Thursday, June 19, 2008

On Friendship

This may sound weird, but I feel like I'm just now learning how to be a friend. For those of you who have been friends of mine for years, please don't misunderstand. I love you all and appreciate your friendship so much! But I've never been the friend that I want to be.

When I was a kid I was homeschooled, and I had one girl, my third cousin, in my Sunday School class at church; the rest were all boys. After we moved, I had NO friends and I played with my siblings mostly. At our church after we moved, I met a group of girls who were totally cutthroat. They were mean to each other, and I constantly came home crying about something someone said to me or someone else. Drama!

Then we changed churches, and I had to start over again. All my friends in middle school had moved by high school. I started over again. I had a good group of friends for one year in high school, and then after two of them dated and broke up we quit hanging out. Then my best girl friend in that group quit talking to me and never did explain why, even after I asked her multiple times and begged for an opportunity to talk it over with her. Years later I asked again and she still ignored me.

After high school, most of my high school friends went away to college. I got a job working full time as the worship ministry secretary. I was in an adult world, and made friends who were older than me. Now the age difference doesn't seem that drastic, but then it did, at least to me. Christina was in that group of friends, hi! There was weirdness between one of the guys and me, so I quit hanging out with them eventually, and then Christina got married to another one of the guys. Somewhere in there, I went away to Bible school.

At Bible school I had terrific friends. We really were there for each other, and we had so much fun. But they all live all over the world. None of them live here. 8 years later, although we still love to get together, we will never be able to be "every day" kind of friends.

Another (rather lonely!) year after that, I went to ORU. ORU requires that everyone live on campus. After one semester of that, they essentially kicked me out of the dorms because they required me to buy a meal plan for their cafeteria, and I couldn't eat what they served. So I had to live on my own. Money was incredibly tight during that time, and I received multiple eviction notices on my apartment door. Then I would go to the "bubble" at ORU for classes, and felt completely different from the people living on campus. They would get upset about classes, or relationships or other things, and it felt so funny to me. I was dealing with just trying to stay there and stay healthy (I had a seizure at the beginning of my second semester) - who cared about a B- on a test? I felt like I couldn't connect on a deep level because nobody understood my world. I met Sarah (and my husband Nick) there, hi! (If others of you from ORU read this, let me know. :)

Then Nick and I came here and got married. We were the first ones of our group of friends from college to get married. Then we got pregnant two weeks after the wedding. Before we knew it, we were kind of in a different world from all of our friends. We love all of them so much still! But we needed people who understood our stage of life. They were no where to be found.

One day at mom's group, a group of us suddenly clicked. We decided to start a small group with our husbands, a couples study. We were all desperate for friends. Suddenly we found them!

I am continually challenged by these women. They offer to clean my house for me when things aren't going well. They send us birthday cards. We trade childcare. We laugh together. We throw showers for each other. My definition of what a friendship is, is being stretched and grown daily. And amazingly most of us have only known each other a few months! God is doing something in us that I almost had given up on.

So, Joanna, Megan, Holly, and Bek, (and your husbands) thanks so much for your friendship. I know Nick feels the same way when I say I hope we can raise our families together, and go to each other's kids' weddings, and grow old together as friends. Love you girls!


  1. We love you too! :) Your blogs always bring a smile to my face. Thanks for sharing parts of your life that might be a little hard to share. I always love hearing about what you're learning and thinking and I'm so happy we're doing life together. :) I thank God for you daily! I really, really do. :) Hugs to you my wonderful friend! :)

  2. Oh my! I"ve been through basically the same thing and just in the past couple of years have found the real meaning of friendship also in my mom's group at church. It kind of saddens me that I don't have any childhood friends to speak of, but I'm incredibly grateful to my heavenly father for putting me where I am today. I don't know where I'd be without my "girls"!!

  3. I just cried. Really I did. I am thrilled to be taking this journey with you. Thank you so much for your sacrificial spirit and open and willing heart. You challenge me every day too. I am excited to see what God has for all of us in the future. :)