Saturday, February 20, 2010

Old Friends

There is just something about having a friend you've known more than half your life. Even at 10 years old, having a friend for five years would be pretty great. I'm sure at 80 years old, having had a friend for more than 40 years would be amazing. As I am 31, having a friend whom I've known since I was 11, which makes it a 20 year-long friendship (and counting), is pretty super. Having moved a lot as a kid, which I explained in a previous post, surely explains my fascination for knowing someone for very long and continuing to be friends. I have so many people in my memory who live all over the country and were important to me at one time, but became memories almost as soon as they became friends. However, we all have people like that in our lives. Don't you remember every school year - you were in a different class and almost had a whole new set of friends every year? What ever happened to those people??? Ahhh... the wonders of Facebook! :)

Anyway, I wanted to write some thoughts and give props to my friendship with Leslie. I walked into Sunday School at a new church, in a new town, in a new state, in a new region of the country one morning, looking for a girl named Leslie. Her step-dad worked with my dad in his new job and Larry had invited our family to his church. Leslie was my age and I was going to be her guest (she was set for a prize for having a guest in SS:). That was it! Almost instantaneously we were best friends. We were in fifth grade. I've never had a friendship like I had with her during those years. This is mostly because of the time of life we were in. Junior High is brutal! We didn't go to the same school, as the church we attended together was in a different town from me. I lived and went to school in Clayton, NC, and she lived and went to school and church in Garner, NC. But we talked for hours on the phone every night and spent just about every weekend together. I didn't do anything without Leslie by my side.

Boy, what an amazing security for a junior high/high-schooler to have - a best friend who is totally loyal, totally committed to you?? With everything that's going on with your body and brain, to know you have a friend who absolutely adores you and loves you to the core? Someone you know wouldn't want to spend time with anyone else, rather than you? I'm sure it had a huge influence in shaping who I am today. I can only pray that my daughters have friendships like that someday. I believe encouraging selflessness in friendship right now, teaching how important it is to be a good friend, and exampling good friendships in my life for them to see can help them toward that goal.

I was remembering recently the night Leslie and I said goodbye as I was moving again, this time from NC to Oregon - literally one coast to another. It was over Christmas break of my junior year in high school. Talk about SAD! Our friend Velvet was also there and we just sat for hours in my empty bedroom, talking about memories and crying. However, we still have a beautiful friendship. It isn't what we dreamed - rooming together in college, living next door as wives and mothers... But we still love each other and talk regularly. We both got to see each other get married. I went to visit her in NC a year and a half ago right after the birth of her third daughter. I actually held my beloved friend's baby girl!
What a gift! We had such a wonderful few days together as I bonded with her sweet children. Now it's her turn - she's coming to see me in April! Boy, do I have plans!! I can't wait for her to meet my daughters (funny, we both had all girls) and see my life up close. I love you, Leslie!

1 comment:

  1. Oh!!! So, I have tears steaming down my face now and I just can't wait to get my arms around you!!! A giant hug right now is just what I need. You are such an awesome friend and I can't wait to see you in April!!! God has blessed us with such a special friendship - one that is hard to find between friends who live so far away from one another. I always think that it's so great how we can pick up the phone and talk after two months of not chatting and feel like we never missed a beat! Oh!!! I can't wait to meet the little Rowzees!!!! Haley talks about them like she knows them and it will be a very special day (later on) when all of our girls get to meet in person! For now, I am just looking forward to April 7th!!!! I love you girl!