Dear Whole Foods,
I shouldn’t have to introduce myself but hello, I’m Emily. To say I’m your biggest fan is an understatement and while you should be thanking me for my financial contributions, today I want to thank YOU. While you’ve been attacked in the media for your products and prices I’ve stood by you and been vocal in my support. Why? It’s not that I think your prices are the lowest (they aren’t) or that your staff is the most knowledgable (some don’t know what gluten-free means), it’s because for the last 3.5 years you have been a safe haven for me. Let me explain…
Two weeks from today I’m graduating from college, a college that just so happens to be right across the street from a Whole Foods store. I won’t go into detail on my deciding factors for schools, but the convenience of the store was a big plus. You might have figured this out but freshman year was a rough one for me. I was homesick every day, I felt out-of-place at a diverse, liberal school, I thought I was weird because I didn’t want to party and drink. There were more tears and sleepless nights than I want to remember. However, in the midst of all my emotions YOU were always there (along with my amazing cousin, to whom I owe my diploma. That’s a different post).
You were there on nights when I felt lonely and days when I had too much time on my hands. You were there for coconut water after runs and on Sunday mornings for breakfast when this early riser couldn’t wait until the dining hall opened at 10 a.m. for breakfast. You let me wander the aisles for hours, just killing time. You let me eat dinner at least 2x a week in a comfortable environment. You gave me access to delicious, nutritious and gluten-free food that dining services couldn’t provide. You let me cry, laugh, read, eat, people-watch and just breathe.
Even after freshman year you have remained a place of happiness and warmth. Yes, I know this is cheesy but living away from home has been tough (for me) and I’ll take any comfort I can get. The 17-year-old freshman who first walked through your doors has come a long way. You have seen her at her worst (read: all freshman year) and at her best (basking in a runner’s high after her first marathon).
So, thank you. Thank you for being there for the highs and lows. Thank you for not judging me (to my face) for wearing yoga pants and t-shirts every.single.time. Thank you for having sushi, a smoothie bar, cut-up watermelon and ALL the salad bar options. Thank you (I think) for feeding my kombucha and expensive almond butter addiction. You are the real MVP.
As I get ready to leave school my days at this location are numbered. But don’t worry, your most loyal customer isn’t gone for food, just relocating a few hours north.
Peace, love and kale,
*Linking up to Thinking Out Loud. Thanks, Amanda!*