The kind that are hard to find


There are lots of friends in this life.  But some are terribly hard to find.  They are the ones you don’t even realize you’ve found until they are a natural part of your life.  The ones who invite themselves to your house mid-flu-season with a yummy soup and cheerful flowers.  The ones who make everything they touch beautiful.  The ones who wear heart-shaped glasses that make you roll your eyes in love, because it reminds you that they live life with their heart exposed.  The kind that walk through the deep, dark ugly days – yours and their own, and while they may flinch, they don’t run.  The kind who make you laugh but aren’t afraid when you cry.

I am so lucky to have many friends like this.  They are my lovelies.  Some are near, and too many are too far away.

One such lovely is about to board a plane to her new home tomorrow.  We’re excited for her new chapter of life – and the many visits we’ll have to make to Hawaii for visits (I know, I know, we are selfless when it comes to visiting friends).  But also,  “see-ya-later” is not the same as “see-ya-tomorrow”, and it makes you look at the chapter-past, to celebrate the life that has been shared, and take a few deep sighs for what will change as life is now shared long-distance.  What did people do before text messaging, face time and frequent flyer miles?  I mean, seriously.

So today, take a minute.  Look around you and take stock of those friends that are hard to find.  The lovelies in your world.  If they are long-distance already, send them a message or a smile or maybe even an old-fashioned postcard with blue ink and everything.  If they are right next door, run over for a just-because-hug.

And celebrate.  Celebrate that God made this whack-a-doo life to be shared.










Thirty four years ago I was given a gift.  A chance.  The chance to find out what this world is all about.  To learn the cosmic dance of beauty and brokenness.  I was a surprise to my mama, and I think I’ve been surprising her ever since.

I’m not very good at birthdays.  I get self-conscious with all the attention – and I get even more self-conscious with a lack of attention.  So you know, birthdays are ripe for anxiety in this department.

But this year I’m not freaking out.  Mostly.  This year, I’m rather blown away by how full these 34 years have been.   And I’m thankful.

34 years into my story, there are so many things I didn’t know would be true of today.  I didn’t know …

… I’d be married to my best friend.

… I’d have filled two passports and be starting on the next one.

… I’d dance on white-sand beaches with crystal clear waters.

… I’d have twelve nephews and nieces, each with personalities that could fill a book.

… I’d have no children of my own.

… I’d know what infertility can do to a soul.

… I’d own a house.

… I’d be happy about owning a house.

… I’d love a dog who snores.

… I’d know foster children by name.

… I’d love scuba diving.

… I’d understand what “thirty-something” means.

… I’d “feel like I’m still in my 20’s” … until I want to go to bed at 10pm.

… I’d drive a convertible.

… I’d have friends that can beat up your friends.

… I’d still wonder if God knows how to do math.

… I’d have a twelve-year-career under my belt.

… I’d know the sound of someone’s last breath.

… I’d hear my niece’s first breath.

… I’d have friends that really do last a lifetime and across the miles.

… I’d find the deepest parts of my soul through my pen.

… I’d discover my favorite place in the whole world: wrapped in my man’s arms.

I didn’t know how brutal life could be, nor how brilliant.

But now I do.  And THAT is what this 34 year old woman (for real, that number is freaking me out) will celebrate with each Happy Birthday that comes her way.