Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Reasons, seasons, and lifetimes

I've heard the phrase people come into your life for a reason, a season, or a lifetime, but I had never read the whole beautiful poem. For the past several years, I have paid close attention and watched in amazement as this phenomenon has happened over and over in my life. I have made some great new friends, rekindled some old friendships, revitalized existing friendships, and sometimes regrettfully and often relievedly said goodbye to some relationships.

I wept with joy as I hugged my very best friend from childhood when we reconnected in 2010 after losing touch for 8 years. I can think of few scarier days in my life than my first day at public school after seven years of homeschooling. It's hard enough to be thirteen without that lapse in socialization that left me feeling out of place, out of touch, and out of style. But there was Lori. My soul mate. She's my only friend who knew my brother Chris. In fact, she's the only person in my life besides my mom and siblings who knew him. She has the distinction of having been my dad's favorite among my friends. She's real and true and knows everything about me good and bad and chooses to love me and be my friend. My BFF. She's here for a lifetime.

My friendship with her, though, made me analyze a lot of other relationships to consider whether they were for a reason, season or a lifetime. My friend, Vickie, needed no analysis. She's here for life. Biggest heart in the whole world. Kindest, sweetest, most thoughtful, loving person. She was my gift during a very dark time in my life, and thankfully, I get to keep her even though now God's light illuminates my path.

There are more, blessings all of them, my girls. Friends through my husband's friends, who became my card partners and then my life partners. Those who entered my heart through my kids but quickly took up residence there. The fellow baseball, football, and cheer moms, who became confidantes. Old high school, with whom I've been blessed--often through facebook--to reconnect. Some that I wasn't close to in high school, I now find we have so much in common, and I am grateful for the opportunity to know them again. To meet for coffee and swap stories, book recommendations, family dramas, and chat away two hours as if it was a minute.

There are the reason friends, who turned into more. Several months ago, upon making a new friend, I hesitantly pondered her place in my life. Then my dad died, and I didn't need to ponder any further why God had sent me a psych nurse.

Then there was the so-called friend, who talked behind my back at every opportunity. I tried to make a go of it, but realized it was futile. The reason she was in my life? Maybe to show me I didn't need people like her in my life. There was the acquaintance, who was friends with all of my friends but never liked me. She told lies about me, tried to make others dislike me and ultimately made me search my soul and question everything about myself. Several years later, I realized none of that had been about me but about her own bitterness that she was projecting onto me. Since finding that out, I've become much more comfortable with the fact that not everyone likes me. I am still a good person, and I don't have to convince my detractors of that.

So as I think about my reason, season, and lifetime friends, my heart swells. My soul is nourished by each of you, whether I picked you out and mentioned you, or I simply have written your name on my heart. Thank you for being my friend.

3 comments:

  1. Well said Mary! Thank you for this. :)

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  2. What's ya family heah? Chopped freakin' livuh? Oy, the freakin' pain.

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