I am blessed. I have one of those life-long friends. You know the kind. You might go months without talking, but when you get together you laugh so hard at least once you almost pee your pants. You know the kind. Laughter is there, when life circumstances are delightful and it doesn't leave simply because circumstances become almost unbearable. And when you leave you silently wonder why it's been so long and resolve it will be less time between coffee. Then life continues for you both until you are months along, again. And eventually there is more laughter and coffee. You part, blessed once again.
My friend is known to my girls for her glitter and glam. Her accessories are always so much better than their own dress-up box treasures. Whenever she comes to visit they want to try on her shoes, examine her purse, touch her bracelets and necklaces or the feather in her hair. You can tell they are longing for the day they get to dress up, just like her.
Right now my sweet life-long friend is going through the almost unbearable and I have been thinking of her constantly. Sometimes quick prayers accompany my thoughts. Sometimes long ones. And sometimes there is empty silence and my heart is simply stuffed full of feelings without words. But these days she is always there with me, while going through the motions of everything else... packing school lunches, laundry, sorting mail, planning dinner, photographing lego creations, breaking up sibling squabbles, and telling my family I love them.
The last time I was shopping I saw pink sparkle shoes in my size and impulsively bought them. My girls were delighted. As they examined the sequins with their fingers and begged to try them on I felt like my dear friend. And when I wear them I know I will always think of her and this time right now, the time between one loss and the next. They remind me to pray. They remind me to be brave and call. Even when I don't know what to say. Even though I don't know what not to say. Because she's the friend who has always taught me that people matter more than anything else and I wish her to know how much she means to me.
I am blessed. I have one of those friends.