Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Sniff. Sniff. Cue the Sappy Michael W. Smith Music.....

My best friend is moving six hours away tomorrow. Carrie, Ashley, and I had our last girls' night on Monday. It really wasn't super sad, like I had anticipated, and I kept my emotions in check, which, as I'm sure you know, is NOT my strong suit. Really, things felt pretty much normal.

But, today I'm having a bit of a hard time. I'm such a sap and I just have a really hard time with these things.

It's just hard for me, because I feel like I've had some really significant friendships in my life, but as life changes and people change, friendships change. I'll be really honest and say that, with one exception, I have been really disappointed to watch some relationships that I really valued fade into less than what I had hoped they would continue to be. I'm not saying that I'm not partially at fault or that circumstances aren't somewhat to blame, but it hurts nonetheless. And I just don't want to go through that again.

Whenever this happens (like when I graduated from college, or when Ellis moved away, or whatever) I always hear that ridiculous Michael W. Smith song, Friends. Does anybody else have background music for life's major (and minor?) events? I actually strongly dislike that songs, but you don't get to pick what's playing in the jukebox in your mind, you know?

The thing is, I knew when Ashley and I became friends that she'd be moving within the year. I also knew how easily I can get attached to people. So, as mean as it sounds (and truly, was) I told myself not to invest too much. Well, I'm going to call that a fail. Not only was it misguided and mean, but I'm not sure it was even possible on a practical level. I just don't do friendships that way. Life is too short for it. I want to give people my all or nothing. I think that's why it hurts me so bad to see those close friendships that I've had deteriorate into just a level above acquaintance status. I am at the point in my life where I'd rather have a few close friendships with people that truly understand me than an arc full of people that are "fun to be around".

And that's just it. Although Ashley (and Carrie, of course!) are fun to be around (almost to the point of ridiculousness at times), the friendship that the three of use have shared over the past year runs so much deeper than that. I really just need to back up.

I have said several times on this blog, that around the time Peyton and I started talking about marriage, I started praying for bridesmaids. Not because I cared about having people that would be there and stand beside me on that special day, but because when I did try to plan how it would be and realized I had no one, save my sister, to stand with me, the Lord used that to prick my heart to see the need for close friendships with other girls. He answered me above any expectation I could have had and I honestly contemplated putting of our wedding a year so that I could live with my friends in an apartment.

When I got pregnant with Ann Peyton I felt a similar emptiness in my life. Within my circle of friends, I did not know a single woman my age who had a child or a single woman of any age that was staying home with their child or children. I knew that Peyton and my family were hugely supportive of me, but I craved a friendship with someone my age who was doing exactly what I was planning to do.

Fast forward for a minute. Monday night, as Carrie, Ashley and I sat in Ashley's living room at almost midnight, we talked about (what else?) blogs. The subject came up of those blogs that you just love. The ones that you get so excited about when you see a new post. The ones where you are just fascinated with the people and just wish you could know them in real life. We all compared our favorites, and I admitted that Ashley's had been one of those for me [I met Carrie in real life REALLY soon after we started reading each other's blogs, so we never really had a true "blog friendship". I always considered her an "IRL" more than anything else.]

The way I first came across Ashley's blog is really a story unto itself, and it's CRAZY to remember that and think how the Lord really orchestrated the whole thing. What's important though, is that around the time she had Evy (I still had about two months until AP's due date), I just became fascinated with her blog. I thought, here is this new mom, who is my age(!), who is staying home with her child(!), who is documenting her life, and who is already mentally trying to prepare for how to raise her daughter to love Christ. Here is the neat part, the part I haven't even told Ashley herself. When we finally decided to meet, I remember praying for our friendship, much in the same way I prayed during my college years for bridesmaids. Even more than I needed a group of girls to stand by me on the most important day of my life, I needed friends to stand beside me on the most important journey of my life- the exhausting, emotionally taxing, amazingly beautiful journey of motherhood.

Still, in my mind I was thinking it would be a very superficial frienship, and I was okay with that. I just needed something. But, once again, the Lord BLEW ME OUT OF THE WATER. He provided me with not one, but TWO amazing friends. And these friendships were anything but shallow. They were two of the most important ones I have known in my life. Because we were doing the most important task of our lives together, and encouraging one another in it. I take comfort in the fact that that bond will be the glue that continues to hold mine and Carrie's friendship with Ashley together, no matter what the distance is between us, and that this frienship will be different from the aforementioned ones because it has such a strong foundation.

So, Ima let myself be moppy for a little bit longer, but then I'll be fine. Because God has been faithful again and again, and other friends who I had no idea were in "family planning" mode have since had babies. Because, I still have an amazing best friend that I know I can count on seeing on a weekly basis. And because I know that

..... a lifetime's not too long to live as friends.

Thanks, MWS, for saying it far more eloquently than I ever could. And thanks, Ash, for being such a blessing in my life.


Carrie said...

Awww, SD! Sweet, sweet post! Our friendship really is a precious gift, and I couldn't be more thankful that God brought us all together :)

Ashley said...

So, so sweet. My heart is so full!

Tiffany said...

This was really beautiful! -a lovely tribute to your friendship. :)