My friend Jack

My son, Thomas has turned 17 years old. I know, that all of us mommas are shocked when our babies grow up. How does it happen so fast? Well, I’ve decided to change his room from the one he’s had since third grade to a more grown up version. (That whole process deserves its own post later.) 

 I’m boxing everything up. Completely emptying and cleaning out the room. There is a box to donate and one to keep. Thomas says to just throw it all away, but I know that one day, it’ll be fun to look back and remember. 

Geodes, rocks for a cairn, trophies, and a signed Harlem Globe Trotters program are all keepers for now. 

 Snake skins, Sharks teeth, alligator head, shells and lava rocks must be saved. 

 As much as he loved the “Magic Tree House” series, I think donating them to library for other children to fall in love with is the right thing to do. 

 I found these three ring binders, his sweet teachers from elementary school put together for each child. Inside is a collection of the child’s writings and a few pieces of artwork from throughout the year.

 In kindergarten, Thomas was in Mrs. Jones’ class with Jack. They had become friends in preschool.  

 In the kindergarten binder I found some of his journal writings. Mrs. Jones would give the class the beginning of a sentence they needed to copy, then the children would complete the sentence in their own words. I’m not too sure what “fbtj” is, but I’m sure they had a blast playing it.

 Although Dad didn’t have much to do with Jack being Thomas’ friend, it is awful sweet of Thomas to be thankful for this friendship.

I think this is about the time of the cleaning and boxing up process, that I started crying. 

 You see, like I was saying at the beginning of this post, Thomas just turned 17. We took him and two of his buddies to dinner. Who did Thomas ask to celebrate with us? Jack. 

This type of friendship is one that many of us will never experience. In the many years they have been friends, I have never heard an unkind word between them. They encourage one another, celebrate the wins and share in the sorrows. I don’t know what will happen in two years when they go off to college, but I am sure they will find a way to keep in touch. 

Hmm…I wonder what else I will find in this room.

Thanks for dropping by! 

 
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Coffee, Talk and few Friendships Along The Way

Sissy lent me two amazing books by Shauna Niequist.20140721-083910-31150640.jpgOh my goodness! I laughed. I cried. And I nodded my head in complete agreement. Shauna is completely transparent in sharing her life and the short chapters make you believe that you are one of the lucky ones to be a part of her story.

One of the many aspects of Shauna that resonated with me is her determination for real relationships. Sure, we wave at our neighbors when we walk by, but have we ever sat in their kitchen and had coffee? What about the small talk we have with our friends at church on our way out the door, doesn’t that count as “real”? I think Shauna would agree that both of these situations are good starting points, but don’t necessarily fill our need for true intimate friendships.

Shauna has a group of friends that meet regularly in each other’s homes. There are toys on the floor. The laundry isn’t folded. Kids are running around. But the coffee is hot. The hugs are warm. And the conversation never stops.

Ohhhhh…..my heart yearns for that intimacy with girlfriends. I’ve had it before. It is so special. But it’s been a few years and I need it again. I figured I was the only one with this need. Surely, everyone else has loads of friends, confidence and their lives are just fine. So, being a bit self-serving, I started asking around, trying to see if there was anyone else out there in need of real talk, a big heart and girl time.

Well, wouldn’t you know, every woman I asked is craving the same thing that I am…Real Relationships! A few weeks ago, I shared my heart’s change from youth leader to women’s ministry. Where’s a better place to start than with the women in my church? So, I put out an email saying that I was going to be at Barnes and Noble at 7:00 pm and hoped they could join me. I had no idea who would show up. Four of us sat down. And you know what? It was the perfect four. One mom was sending her oldest off to college and the child was acting so defiant, moody and was hard to love right now. The three others of us have had children go off to college, so we completely knew where she was coming from. From our own experience, we were able to reassure her that this was God’s way of cutting those apron strings and letting the child’s wings fly. Four women. One mom worried about her son acting so strangely. And three moms who have experienced the same thing.

The next week, I sent out the same text, Barnes and Noble at 7:00. Three of us showed up. Two of whom, I don’t think really knew each other. One mom is grappling with deep, mixed emotions with the adoption of her daughter. The child was 12 when she came home. It’s hard. It isn’t like bringing home an innocent baby. With an older child, there is so much baggage and unknowns to be worked out. Additionally having two biological children in the home, this can cause some chaos in the household. If this was me, I may even question God why He led me to do this. So here we are, three women at Barnes and Noble. Who knew that the woman sitting beside my hurting friend, was actually adopted herself at an older age. Wow! Coincidence? I don’t think so. No one else needed to be there. Just us.

As Shauna showed me, it doesn’t take a fancy invitation, just a quick email or text. The location only needs to be easy, your house-as is or a neighborhood coffee shop. And an open heart. I found that it wasn’t in the quantity of people who showed up…it was the quality.

20140721-104953-38993659.jpgThanks for dropping by!

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