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{Dear Daughters} Let’s talk about friends because you know how girls can be.

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Dear Daughters,

I want to talk about friendship, not the hey-we’re-Facebook-friends kind, but the real kind. You will have friends in childhood. (And if you’re really lucky you’ll keep a couple of those into adulthood.) You will go to each other’s birthday parties and put your mother’s makeup on together. You will compare loose teeth and talk about how annoying siblings can be. You will learn the fun of experiencing life together.

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You will have friends as a teenager, although the emotions will go through the roof. Sometimes you will feel like you’ve hit the friend jackpot, and sometimes you will feel alone. You will navigate the cafeteria politics, and you will realize some friends are headed down a dangerous path. You will see friends on their best days and on their worst days, and you will realize friendship is hard.

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You will have friends in your 20s when you’re all trying to figure out who you are and what you’re doing. (The answer: arrogant and trying to prove yourself.) (At least that was my answer. Maybe you’ll be ahead of me.)  You will try to amass friends like there is a shortage because you need connections! Opportunities! To know the right people! You will have a blast trying out new restaurants and staying up late. (Because–hello! You can sleep ’til noon the next day!) But the next day you will wonder if you said the right thing, were funny enough, and looked the right way. You’ll look at the selfies in your phone and critique your hair, your oily skin, your arm that you should have held away from your body a little bit so it looked thinner.

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And then toward the end of your 20s you’ll hopefully find your people. There’s a good chance you will find them on your darkest days. Or maybe find out they’ve been there for a while, but you just didn’t know they were your people. They will leave boxes of pastries on your doorstep when your heart is broken. They will call and listen and cry with you and two hours later you will finally hang up. They will let you see their dark day, their ugly parts, their true self. And you will muster up the courage to show them yours. And you will be loved. And then you will know you’ve found your people.

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You will travel hundreds of miles to see them when life puts you in different cities. You will call and text and send pictures daily. You will have inside jokes, TMI confessions, and you will make them promise to delete your text message thread should you die. (Because no one else needs to know you blamed that smell on your newborn baby when you knew good and well it wasn’t her.) You will carve out time and write birthday cards and cheer them on. Your heart will break when they hurt. You will walk through hard days together. You will cook meals for each other and take care of each other’s children. You will swap recipes and pep talks and acne + wrinkle creams. (Because, sweet girls, it is possible to need both at the same time!) You will laugh and cry together. And you will pray and thank God a million times for your people.

Oh, and you will eat. 😉

Pictures are from a trip a couple weeks ago to Tampa with two of my people. (Because one of my people had to move back home to Florida three years ago, a move I’m still mourning.) Two hour meals, fresh seafood, palm trees, and sleeping in. Bliss. But we’re back home and knee deep in laundry and homework and crushed Goldfish crackers so we’re more like this now. . .

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Dear daughters, when you find your people, hold on to them. Love them well. Be real. Be vulnerable. And when it’s been too long since you’ve all been around a table, fly or text or call or do whatever it takes to make that happen. These will be some of the best moments of your life.

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