I have lauded the benefits of female friendship for years now. I’ve even told my sad tales of girlhood friendship heartbreaks and grown-up friendship betrayals. I cannot sing the praises of a good friend enough but I’m going to try again right now.
I turned 40 on Monday. I am not the woman that I thought I would be at 40. And my circumstances are not the circumstances I thought I would be living in at 40. I’m a bit more rough around the edges and a bit more angry than I would have predicted. But I’m also a lot more loved than I would have guessed too.
My closest friends know me well. As in, they know my darkness and have not left me to wade through it on my own.They also know my love for words and they gave me the indescribable gift of letters telling me what they love about me.
In these letters I was told that what they love about me is that I am striving to be better, that I’m stronger than I think I am, that I have parts of me that just can’t move on yet and that’s okay, that I could mess everything up in my life and they still won’t walk away, that they see Jesus being formed in me, that they know I’m going to make it.
I’m surrounded by love. Jesus loves me, this I know. And Jesus knows me well enough to know that I need and crave human companionship. He knows that I fear being left behind, that I fear being rejected for who I am, that I fear not being liked just because I’m me. He knows that I love being alone but that a talk with a good friend can keep me riding high for days. He knew that I’d walk through the fire and deep waters in this life (most specifically in this past decade) and so He surrounded me with love in the form of other women who, for some reason I can’t put my finger on, think I’m something special.
So thank you to Aunt Liz, Charlotte, Deb, Erika, Kate, Keely, Kelly, Linda, Michelle, Missy, Mom, Parker, Ruthie, and Sheli. Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you. My life is rich, my soul is healing, my heart is full.