Saying Goodbye to My Work BFF
When I first met Siobhán, I didn’t even know how to pronounce her name.*
We met our company’s San Francisco HQ in December of 2013. She was in town from Dublin for a global meetup of all the people on our team. I knew about her because her profile photo was of her with a T.A.R.D.I.S.–and I loved Doctor Who, so I figured we’d probably have stuff we could talk about. She knew about me because I’d organized a holiday gift exchange for our team.
That picture on the right? That’s is one of our first selfies (of so, so many).
When I met Siobhán, she was wearing a skirt that had a repeating pattern of the T.A.R.D.I.S. and I was holding a mug that was shaped like (you guessed it!) a T.A.R.D.I.S. From that moment on, we were basically best friends.
I had never had a Work BFF before. I had work friends, but no one who shared all the same interests as me the way she did. People joked that we were like sisters, and they assumed we’d known each other a lot longer than we actually had. We outright said that we were like soulmates–two halves of a whole.
We quickly discovered that we were both registered for the same Harry Potter conference that summer–and why not go together and make a full vacation out of it? She’d never been to Disney World, I hadn’t been there as an adult. We could go to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter.
Best vacation ever for two huge nerds, right?
It will definitely go down as one of the greatest trips of my life. This isn’t because it was Disney World or the Wizarding World of Harry Potter or LeakyCon–I’d been to all of them before. These were made great because I was sharing them with Siobhán, who, in the span of only a few months, had become one of my favorite people on the planet.
I got to see her face when she saw Cinderella’s castle and Hogwarts for the first time. I was there when she met Anna from Frozen… while she was dressed as Anna from Frozen. Because we dressed up in polka dot dresses and Minnie Mouse ears, we were invited to a special dock to view the fireworks in EPCOT. It was a truly, wondrously magical trip, and I can’t imagine sharing that with anyone else.
When I met Siobhán, I had never left the U.S.
But she was there in 2015 (waking up, groggy but still excited to see me) when I arrived in Reykjavik for a week-long adventure in Iceland ahead of our team summit. She stood and argued with the guy at Enterprise in San Francisco when he was giving me trouble about a car we were trying to rent for our weekend road trip to Monterrey (she’s more assertive than me–we balance each other out). When I arrived in Dublin for the first time, she helped me conquer jet lag by dragging me out into town to see all the touristy things that I didn’t want to go to by myself until I was nearly delirious with the need for sleep. We hung out in Portland when she was here for work, and we went to Seattle (with a pit-stop in Forks to meet the vampires). In 2015, I saw Siobhán in real life at least once a month for the majority of the year–all while we lived in different countries!
Together, we saw Taylor Swift’s 1989 tour on two continents. And then, just a few weeks ago, she joined me in Berlin for one last week of working together from the same space. I got to watch her do her thing–train a class with the shining enthusiasm that I don’t think anyone in the world but her possesses.
We had so many adventures in the two and a half years that we’ve known each other. I can’t even imagine what we’ll come up with next. It’s definitely been a ride. 😉
So thank you, Siobhán, for always being there for me when I wanted to rant about work, catch up on six episodes of Doctor Who in one night, fangirl, talk about boys, spam your Facebook messages with 200+ messages in one night, fangirl, and everything between. I like to think that you’re not actually leaving me behind at work, you’re just getting a promotion from Work BFF to Real-Life BFF.
It’ll be grand.
* It’s Shiv-awn, by the way. Not See-oh-buh-haan. Good effort, though.