Sunday, November 13, 2016

A Lifetime of Love and Laughter

Dearest Z,

As I write this you are sitting with your BFF (as you refer to her). You worked hard to earn a reward of going to the local coffee shop to get a cup of cocoa and a dessert. Before we left you told me you had SO many things to talk about. I couldn't help but wonder what 2nd graders really need to discuss at length, but I did smile knowing all the deep and heartfelt conversations with friends that will be in store for you someday. For today, you are content to play an intense card game while sipping on cocoas from your "adult" looking cups.

You probably already know this, but I often pray for you, and today I find myself praying that you always see the beauty and blessings of friendship. This year has been tough for of your best friends moved away, and your other best friend is in a different classroom this year. I know it is hard for your 2nd grade mind to comprehend life beyond today and your two BFFs. I'm so excited for you to walk through life and meet so many new people. Whether God blesses you with a few good friends or a whole crowd of them, I pray you treasure each and every one. If I had to rank my blessings, the friendships I hold so dear would be near the top.

Z, even though at times you bicker with your sister, in time you will grow to see how she really is one of your greatest friends. While other friends will come and go in life, sisters are your forever friends.

Z, different stages of life will bring different friends to you, and they will all mean a little something different to you. They will ALL be special, but each in their own way because those friends were there for you when you experienced hundreds of different things at different times in your life. I wouldn't trade them for the world. My high school college friends...friends I made during my first years out teaching that were almost more like family...former students...friends when I moved back to New club friends here in It Works and school friends....fellow parents, etc. The list could go on. It isn't meant to brag about how many friends I have, but to show you that your two BFFs now will multiply as the years go on. Blessings abound.

Here I am with my college friends at a reunion this summer.
It has been 16 plus years since we graduated, but it was like no time has passed.
We laughed, we cried, we ate, and then we laughed again.

Allow me to share a few more reasons why a true friend is such a blessing...

You know a true friend when it has been years since you've seen them, but once you are together it takes just a minute and it feels like you just saw them yesterday.

 A true friend loves you for who you are, even though you might be quite different from them.

When you are at your lowest, they know whether to just listen and be a shoulder to cry on or give advice.

They help you pick out clothes for a first date.

They pull long study sessions with you in college, and then go grab a bread bowl at Perkins.

They laugh with you.

A good friend swaps clothes with you.

They know all your quirks and find them endearing.

They do your makeup for you on your wedding day.

They support you.

They don't judge you when you wear your yoga pants again and your house is a mess.

They laugh with you.

In a bind they'll watch your kids for you.

They will surprise you with a coffee at work.

They encourage you to reach your goals.

You have secret stories or jokes that no one else will understand.

A good friend knows when you need a girls' night out.

Have I mentioned they laugh with you? A good laugh with a great friend is truly one of the best kinds of medicine in life. Laugh loud, laugh long, and laugh until you cry. 

I could go on and on about the blessings of friendship, but I think you understand the point I'm trying to make. So, go ahead and dive into this wonderful world full of endless opportunities to meet amazing people along the way. You will be amazed when you turn 40 (like I am now) and look back and see how all of these once upon a time strangers are now a vast array of friends that have a piece of you.

Simply put...laugh hard, love big, and be thankful for your blessings.