ode to friendship…

It’s Thursday afternoon.
The two oldest kids have gone back to school after the Christmas vacation, and the two little ones have just been tucked into their beds for their naps.
I lit a candle on the mostly bare mantle, straightened up the toy room, restocked the t.p. in the bathroom and have propped my feet up for a little reprieve.
The beef stew in the oven smells amazing and I need to ask my mother what kind of flour makes the best biscuits, and then supper is a wrap.
Not that every day is all beef-stew-and-biscuits.
Haha.
No, in fact, I made very basic meals almost the entire time the kids were out of school for the holidays.
The cupboards boast very few options in them right now and I really should make a grocery run.
But, that’ll wait for another day.
Moving on.

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(my camera is in the shop. these pictures are dug up from this fall.)
Last night I was thinking about a conversation from our family suppertime where my oldest daughter was asking her dad and I who our best friend is. It was an interesting conversation and I was hesitant to name names in that context, but three people did pop into my mind faster than others.
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As I was lying in bed recalling a message from earlier in the day, I was moved to tears as I thought on friends and people in my life now and our upcoming move to the Plains.
While we have a contract in the works on our little house here, we feel hesitant to put all of our hopes and future plans into that basket because we have seen enough times where it’s not done until it’s done. And, while it does cause for some moments of anxiety, for the most part, I am really at rest with the process to this point. There are still a lot of unknowns and questions and what if’s as we inch forward in this adventure. And, we expected it to be as such.
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But, what I was not prepared for was how often I am overwhelmed with emotion at the thought of leaving here. It hits me at the strangest times, and the tiniest little thing can trigger a memory or emotion and I feel a huge lump in my throat and tears behind my eyes.
Like last night recalling that supper conversation. The people that came to my mind as my close friends are people that I know will still be my friends even when we are 1,200 miles away. But. I also know that those friendships will change and in time, we will grow apart. This to me, seems like the process that life is. Maybe it’s because it has been part of my life’s long experience and I have accepted it as such, I do not know.
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I do know that while I cannot expect things to stay the same as they are today, I CAN let the people in my life now know what they mean and have meant to me while I have been here during this part of my life’s journey.
And, so, without naming names, I am going to write a little ode to my friend….
As you read this, think of the people in your life and what they mean to you.
I challenge you to let them know it. Let them know that you are grateful and that they have made a difference in your life.

Dearest Friend,
To look at us together, you and me, you would not think we would be a compatible pair.
On so many spectrums, we are at different points.
You are a few years ahead of me on the journey of life and have spent your last twenty years charting a course that you knew. A course that allowed our paths to cross.
The first time I met you, I saw you as a strong person. A person who knew what she was about.
You came into my life on a regular basis and yet, it was from a distance. As time went on, our paths crossed in more personal ways and while my initial reaction was to use caution, you were upfront and told me ‘you were an all or none kind of person.’
I think it was in that moment that I knew a side to friendship that I had never before experienced.
Through the last few years, your faithful friendship to me has held me accountable. It has brought me to places where I looked at complacency and mediocrity within my heart that I didn’t even know existed.
Your belief in me and your not letting me take the easy way out was a gift money could never purchase.
Time and again you have not just said, but lived; ‘I’m here if you need me’ in the most tangible of ways.
You have seen me at my utter worst and yet, been okay with it.
You have supported and encouraged me in my marriage.
You have asked me hard things.
You have dared me to be someone that I never saw myself as.
You have taken me on adventures that otherwise I would never have gone on.
You have accepted and loved my children as your own.
You have been one of God’s greatest gifts to me.
Because of you and the gift of your friendship, I have wanted to be a better friend to those near me.
Because of God bringing you into my life, I know that friends can be the family we choose for ourselves.
Because the seasons of our life change and because we are all only here for a little while, I am so thankful that for this season of my life, God saw fit to give me the gift of you.
You will never know the entirety of the impact your life has had on mine.
But, you should know that you are pretty great and that you are one of the dearest souls I have ever met.
Thank you for being you.
With much love,
Rachel

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5 thoughts on “ode to friendship…

  1. I love this. Moving is so, well, emotional when you go far away! I hope that your friends do stay in touch even though the miles will separate you. 😉

  2. Stacey says:

    I will definitely remember you always and forever and don’t be the least bit surprised if a car shows up in your Kansas driveway – WITH ME IN IT!! This ode made me teary as it reflects so much of the kind of friend you are to me. You have so many talents Rachel. I know that where ever you go, you will be successful and rewarded. Love you to pieces!! Embrace this new journey and just know that your time spent in PA was purposeful and that the seeds you planted will blossom forever. Love ya!

  3. This was so beautifully written and some friends did come to mind when I was reading it. Made me feel quite blessed to be known and loved by people like that. Thanks for sharing your heart.

  4. My heart has a lump in it…
    So many emotions, I can only imagine. The friendships that will change, the new friendships that will form… What an amazing story each person’s life is!
    Thank you for sharing this… xo

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