Back in the early 90s, I was in Girl Scouts with some of my best friends. I loved going camping with them. In fact, camping was my absolute favorite, and sitting around the campfire provided many memories. I still remember the song we used to sing:
Make new friends
But keep the old
One is silver
And the other gold
A circle is round
It has no end
That’s how long I want to be your friend
There are apparently other verses to this song, which I just learned in searching to make sure I had the lyrics correct, but these were the only lyrics we ever sang!
Formerly I had great trouble making friends. I’m the type of gal who typically prefers small groups or even one-on-one to crowds, though I can certainly handle a crowd from time to time. Something has happened in the last several years, though. In 2010 Stephen and I moved here to North Carolina so far from where we’d spent our entire lives growing up. I knew that if I was to survive this move, I’d have to get to know folks around me and make friends. As we attended church at Grace in Wake Forest, the friends I’ve made there are those who know me at some of the deepest levels of my heart and still love me. Still more when I became a Lemon Dropper, I suddenly was thrown into a world where I would have to learn how to get along with a mass group of people and work together as small teams and as one huge team. Eventually I learned to become a leader, but those I lead have become some of my very best friends.
This year I turned 33. gasp! I’d not had any kind of a birthday party in ages, and I’d actually spent several birthdays alone with my wee little children since my husband’s work schedule often had him away on my birthday. This year had to be different, so I threw a party for myself. In all honesty I struggled to do this since I felt so awkward throwing my own birthday party. Do other people do that? is what I kept asking myself. I stopped caring, though, and invited about 15 of my friends (what was that about small groups? haha.) to come with me to The Chocolate Boutique in Raleigh for what I hoped would be an amazing time. I was definitely not disappointed!
These ladies rocked my world when they showed up on Friday night. That they would give up their Friday evening to spend time with me (and chocolate, of course) blew my mind and was a shower of absolute grace upon my soul. One of my friends even drove two hours to come hang out, and she got us a hotel for the night! I stayed up until 1am talking with my best friend, and I didn’t have to make breakfast the next morning (a big deal to this momma).
Oh, and I mustn’t fail to mention the phenomenon that was my mother’s presence that weekend. It had been many, many years since I’d had the privilege of spending both my birthday and Mother’s Day with my Momma. (long story) She was able to manipulate her work schedule so that she’d be in Charlotte for training this week and came out days early just to hang out with us. Amazingness!
I love these ladies, and I can hardly believe that I can call them (even my Momma!) my friends. Indeed, they are both silver and gold to me. What a fabulous way to spend an evening turning 33. I couldn’t have asked for a better gift than if I could have had all of my friends there, including the ones from around the entire US. Happy birthday to me!
Wherever we are, it is our friends that make our world.