Friday, July 25

BFF: Thirty-something Years & Counting

Growing up can be tough. There is learning to share, surviving mean teachers, managing arguments with peers and siblings, and the dreaded teasing and playground politics. Then comes puberty - navigating fashion trends, enduring new and frightening hormones, and all those important firsts: first bra, first period, first major crush. A little later and there's discovering a personal faith, fighting body image issues, relating with parents, learning to drive. Which job? Which college? Which sports? Which boy? Which party? Which standards?

Three people in particular helped me navigate these years. Our friendship started early in elementary school, and we stayed close by each others sides until we donned our caps & gowns. Through those turbulent years of childhood and adolescence, these girls had more influence on making me who I am than anyone else outside of my immediate family. And their influence? Golden. Godly. Strong. Feminine. So very, very funny.

One evening in early 1990, we sat on the beach in our cheerleading uniforms and dreamed of our future, which included a white picket fence in front of all four of our houses, all lined up in a row; our children were to grow up together and marry each other. It was to be quite idyllic.

We spent this last weekend together, close to that same beach. This was the very first time that the four of us had gotten together by ourselves since high school. We came with a little bit of nerves and a whole lot of excitement (and Three Amigos!).

Our high school dream didn't, or at least hasn't, worked out. But reality hasn't turned out too bad. All four of us still live in the Northwest. We all entered into the helping professions - social work, teaching, nursing, and counseling. We all four are married to wonderful, Godly men. So far, there are ten children (six boys, four girls - so we'll need to figure out that arranged marriage thing) who are healthy and bright and beautiful. And most importantly, we are all still deeply in love with Jesus.

Friendships really do make a difference. If you have children, involve yourself in their peer relationships from an early age. Guide them, as much as you are able, to friendships that are positive and will lead them closer to the Lord. I would not be the ____ (amazing? fabulous? insert positive adjective here) person I am today without these three girls walking alongside me for so many years.


rebecca marie said...

i like those girls. all four of them.

and i like their (i can't really say prom dresses, can i?) banquet dresses.

i was ever so delighted to get a friend suggestion for two of them on facebook from you.

i'm glad you got away with them.

phyllis said...

There is nothing like having some 'forever friends' in your life to bless and enrich you. Knowing these cute girls as you each grew up and blossomed--and now see you as mature, lovely women--how wonderful! Your bond is special, hang onto each other.
Love to each of you,
Mom Cash

suzylu said...

What a blessing that you all have remained close and still share in each other's lives! I glad you had a great weekend with these "girls" =0)

Randy said...

Nice hair!