It’s been said that everlasting friends go long periods of time without speaking and never question the friendship. These friends pick up like they just spoke yesterday regardless of how long it has been or how far away they live, and they don’t hold grudges. They understand life is busy and love is there.
What would life be like without friends, right? I’m a huge fan of the TV show FRIENDS. A couple summers ago, I got all down in the dumps over a stupid guy who will remain nameless, and decided I wasn’t leaving my apartment until I’d watched every episode of FRIENDS starting at season one all the way through season ten when it ended. And I am here to report that I did just that. Now, I did have to rise from my slumber from time to time for the necessities such as food and drink and occasional shower, but other than that, the cast of FRIENDS and I became very well acquainted with each other. I also watched every single episode of Gilmore Girls that summer. I love Lorelai and Rorie Gilmore as though they are two of my closest real life pals. And don’t even get me started on FRIENDS. I’m taking an Earth and Space Science class this summer and we had a guest speaker visit our classroom a few weeks ago. He just so happened to be a paleontologist and without even thinking, I raised my hand and asked if he knew Ross Geller. I can’t believe I just admitted that, but whatever. No shame.
I often ask myself where on Earth would I be without friends? And especially my girl friends. I’m really one of the luckiest people I know because I have the best of the best when it comes to girl friends. It’s so hard for me to just rattle off a couple names because once I get started, I realize how long my list of friends really is.
I’ve got Julie. We met close to five years ago at the gym. She started out as my personal trainer and then we developed a friendship that, to this day, can not be shaken. Julie was able to get me to do things that I never imagined possible. I ran my first 5k with her and she ate her first slice of triple chocolate cake with me. I’m probably not as good of an influence on her as she’s been on me. But whatever. I love Julie and don’t know where on earth I’d be without her. She’s the best listener.
Sam is my birthday buddy. We share the same day of birth. The other day we were talking about zodiac signs and she looked at me and asked, “What’ your zodiac sign?” I just stared at her. I couldn’t even blink. We have the same birthday. Our signs are the same. I didn’t say she’s the brightest of my friends, but I love her anyway. HA. I’m kidding, Sam. She’s actually a really smart person. She’s carried me through the entire teaching program, if the truth be told. I was one of Sam’s brides maids and that was such an honor. We have the oddest sense of humor and there’s not a whole lot of people who get it, but we do, and that’s what matters. “Live outside the burple.”
Christin and I have been friends since elementary school. I think I met her in second grade. So, almost 20 years ago. I feel like the ancient of days when I say I remember stuff from 20 years ago. I think I found a gray hair this morning. I’ll be checking myself in to a nursing home soon. Ugh. Anyway, Christin and I talk just about on a daily basis. Sometimes, it’s quite a bit, other days, it’s just a quick, “Hey, how are ya?” and then we’re on our merry little way. Either way, I love love love Christin. We joke around sometimes and say that we are each others logic. For anyone that knows both of us, this is a scary thought. But she is full of so much wisdom and insight. And I have to say that my favorite texts that I receive from Christin are the ones where she’s been Facebook stalking our old high school classmates and they’ll read something like, “Rach, have you SEEN _____________. How did they get married before us?” HA.
I’ve got the group of people that I grew up with in church. Jess and Joey, Nasty (as we so affectionately call him), Seth (my brother from another mother)……the list could go on and on. I don’t see these friends that often but when we do see each other, it’s as though we haven’t missed a beat. Honestly, some of my best memories of growing up are with these people. I went to the Philippines with these guys, and endless youth group trips to the Barn Swings (only in SW Missouri), and countless nights at Jess and Joey’s watching movies and playing tag in the hay bales (again, only in SW Missouri). Ah, the good ol days.
Then I have Amanda and Heather, or Bird, as we like to call her. Okay, you guys wanna hear about some good times, well then, grab a chair and get comfortable cause I could go on for hours about stories with these guys. My favorite memory is when Bird and I got the bright idea to sit Amanda on the roof of Bird’s car and drive her around on the church parking lot. It was all fun and games until Bird got nervous and hit the brakes and sent Amanda sailing through the air. When she landed, we couldn’t see where she was laying and we just knew that Bird had run over her and we’d murdered our best friend. I’m laughing so hard as I type this because I have the visual of Amanda in the air. Anyway, we threw the car in park and ran around to the front of the car where Amanda laid, the contents of her purse scattered all around her, and she looks up at us and says, “Am I dead? Where’s my lipstick? Oh my GOD. My mom is gonna kill me. I just ruined this mini skirt and it’s my mom’s!!!!!” At this point, we knew she was gonna live. So, I bent down, scooped her up and ran to our friend, Josh’s, Jeep (because I no longer trusted Bird to drive Amanda anywhere) and I tried to throw her in but I couldn’t quite get her through the door of the Jeep and she slammed her head on the railing and honestly, I don’t know how the three of us made it out of our teen years alive. Some days I want to go back and relive them, but I’m honestly afraid we WOULDN’T live through it another time.
I met three of my best friends in all the world while I lived in Dallas for two years. Jen, Jess, and Ariana are three ladies that, no matter how far apart we live from each other, will always be my favorites. We’ve been through so many chapters in our friendship of seven years. I’ve watched each one of them become wives and two of them are mothers now and it has been such a wonderful treasure to see how life changes but our friendship remains constant. I love the time that Jen broke her nose and wasn’t supposed to laugh because the pressure made her nose bleed, and anyone who knows us knows that when are together, we laugh. A lot. So, I was standing on the coffee table showing off my new shoes and I slipped on a towel that was laying next to a wine glass and when I slipped, I kicked the wine glass that just so happened to be full and it splattered all over the wall and Jen started laughing so hard her nose bled everywhere and I felt so bad but I couldn’t stop laughing either. I have so many memories with all these girls….I could write a book.
I met this lady named Shontell a few months ago on Instagram. Yes, the photo app for iPhones. I can’t remember exactly how it happened but I think I “liked” one of her photos of the sign hanging in Luke’s Diner and then she “liked” one of Anne of Green Gables on mine and one thing led to another and the next thing I knew we discovered that we are literally so much alike, it’s scary. For real. I swear we were separated at birth. She gets me. I get her. It’s creepy. We even text back and forth asking for “teacher advice.” I love her. She lives in Reno, though, so we don’t get to each others houses often.
When I was 10 or 11, there was this brown kid named Barry that always made fun of my laugh at school. To this day, he claims that he could hear me laughing clear at the other end of the middle school. Well whatever. My laugh brought us together, and to this day, he is still one of my very best friends. He was home on leave from the Marine Corps about a week ago and I swear, we had the best time. We got tattoos together ( I got his zodiac sign and he got mine), we stayed out all night being crazy like we were in high school, we rented movies from Redbox and looked at hundreds of old pictures. He’s back in California now and I miss him a lot. I love that he’s one of those friends that just picks up where we left off and never asks a question.
I could seriously go on and on. Like I said, I’m a lucky girl to have so many friends in my life. I’ve got people from West Africa and the Philippines that I consider dear friends that I keep in touch with very regularly. I make friends everywhere I go. You can never have enough friends. Friends are a gift from God. They’re the family that you get to choose. And I love each one of mine more than they know. Thanks for putting up with me, ya’ll!
I’ve never met a stranger,