It started with a bunch of giggling girls putting on make-up, sipping from Red Solo cups while ready for a night on the town. Our friendship was formed through fun and blowing off steam in college.
Then we took turns throwing bridal showers, bachelorette parties, donning bridesmaid dresses and walking down the aisle. Our friendship was strengthened as we grew from girl to woman to wife.
Our friendship was strained a bit as we struggled to find the balance of marital bliss and maintaining friendships. The strong, true friends grew even closer.
Before we knew it, we were taking turns throwing baby showers. We rocked babies and shared new mama advice. We cried tears of sadness for those of us that struggled to get pregnant. Our friendship was nurtured as we cared for each other.
Careers and life has spread us across the country, but we keep in touch almost daily through texts. And one glorious weekend each summer, we get together. We are once again a bunch of giggling girls only with a few well-earned laugh lines.
Now we are in a phase that we weren’t prepared to hit us so quickly. A time when instead of our texts being light hearted with private jokes and summer plans, they are filled with tears and requests for prayers. Almost half of our group of girlfriends are dealing with serious illnesses with our parents or in laws. As you get older, you know that you will have to deal with the natural progression of your parents aging, but I wasn’t ready to deal with it in my 30s.
Although I hate that we are faced with this phase already, I am so grateful for their friendship. We are all fortunate to have wonderful, loving, and supportive husbands. But sometimes you just need your girlfriends. Husbands have it engrained in them to be “fixers.” Unfortunately, there is no “fixing” this situation. Sometimes you just have to talk it out….cry it out…and even laugh.
That is why God gives us girlfriends.
Because my close friends, Jodi, Nancy and I are all facing similar battles with our loved ones, we are able to support each other unlike no other. Nancy and I sat on the phone last week and just cried together because we understood exactly what the other was feeling and because simply…we could. That is just what friends do. God works through Jodi to call or text just when I need that pick me up. I like to think He does that through me for her too. After years of friendship, we are so in tune with each other that we know when to reach out to each other despite the 1,000 miles that separates us. But most importantly, we pray for each other. We know the importance of prayer for the patient but also the family surrounding them.
Although I wasn’t ready for this phase of life or friendship, I am thankful for my girlfriends that help me get through it sane.
As I write this, I am listening to my own daughter giggle and sing as she and her friend, Bonney, are making a dance video. It makes me smile. I pray that Ella is blessed with girlfriends like mine that will be there for her through all the ups, downs, and phases of life