I am sitting on the beach with two childhood friends as I write this. We planned this little vacation several months ago. We have been friends for thirty-two years and we have all had ups and downs in our lives. We all three have been in some sort of abusive relationship that varied in severity. We all three eventually married wonderful men. Two of us had children and one didn’t. We call ourselves the Hyster-sisters as we all three have had Hysterectomies.
As I am sitting writing this post, Paula is reading a magazine, and Nina is collecting beach grasses to make a little wreath or basket or whatever it ends up being. We are all creative in some way or another. I write, Nina makes different creations, and Paula puts together really cute outfits. We have different talents, ideas, beliefs, lifestyles, and I’m sure many other differences.
But one thing we do not differ on is how valuable our friendship is to each of us. Paula has become a young widow (this is the reason for our little trip) and she didn’t want to spend her first anniversary without him, by herself. Nina’s kids are grown and moved out to live their lives as adults. Her husband took a little trip of his own on a camping adventure. My husband is holding down the fort at home with our two kids ages eighteen and sixteen. My daughter (the sixteen-year-old) is starting her senior year of high school and will be seventeen in just a few short weeks.
So, we are all three at different stages of life. It’s hard to imagine being a widow at my age and it’s hard to imagine being an empty-nester, but this particular phase is closer than ever. We each bring something different to the “table” so to speak (pun intended). Our little cottage we are staying in is a perfect tiny “she-shack” with a fire-pit, brick patio and patio set to have our coffee in the morning, a fountain, and plenty of birds to hear singing.
Well there was a pause in the writing for more fun, so I am actually home now finishing this post. I come away from this trip with the knowledge that friends can have a bond to spite their various differences. If there is a mutual respect for one another, a true caring for each other’s’ well-being, and a shared desire to remain friends no matter what, then you have the ingredients for a life-long friendship. We shared laughter, memories, new experiences and yes, a few tears on our girls get-away. I come away with wanting to value my husband more, make more time for my kids while they are still at home. Because this time will pass far to quickly.
I’ve learned more about what I want out of my life, cared less about portraying a certain image to those who don’t know me. Realized I have work to do to break the stigma that blind people (or anyone with any sort of disability) can’t have the same new adventures as anyone else, and have had a renewed passion for the Lord and praying for others. My heart longs to reach so many more people for Jesus that sometimes my eyes brim with the tears that God cries for His children. Romans 10:15 reaches my soul with these words… “and how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the scriptures say ‘how beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news’” NLT. We painted our toenails on our weekend getaway and they turned out pretty. But you know what? If I can bring God’s message of free love and forgiveness to everyone I can… no pedicure in the world could make my feet more beautiful then carrying that message to them. Oh Father, give me the desire to share You with others always. Let distance, restrictions, time, nor any other obstacle get in the way of that.
Will you join me in this prayer?
P.S. If you need something brought to the Lord, please don’t hesitate to ask me to pray for you. It would be my honor and privilege to do so.