Okay, so technically your birthday was yesterday, but I ran out of time yesterday, and since I was at your party/game night until midnight last night, I couldn’t do it then. So, better late than never.
Meredith and I have been friends since our early high school years. Neither of us can really remember when it started, because it was so gradual and natural. I think it was 10th grade, in Mr. B’s homeroom. I am not a morning person, but Mer always made me laugh and start my day out with a smile on my face. She was just that kind of person, she still is.
Our friendship grew, and I have wonderful memories of all the crazy stuff we did in high school. Hanging out at the mall (is that man on the roof following us?), driving around with our other friend (another Jennifer) – and Mer driving “illegally”, going to Prom- (is there anything in my braces?). I still laugh over some of those memories.
However, not all of my memories from that time in my life are happy ones. My parents separated and eventually divorced between my junior and senior years. My senior year was incredibly difficult emotionally because of that. But Meredith was one of 2 people that God used to make an oasis for me in their friendship. She listened when I needed to talk. She rarely said much during my rants, but the next day she would hand me a letter she had written, filled with Scripture and encouragement. I still have some of those letters and read them from time to time. You don’t know how much those meant to me, Mer. **tear**
Shortly after we graduated from high school, our paths separated for a while. I got married (she was in the wedding of course) and she went off exploring what it meant to be an adult and growing closer to God. We still kept in touch and would meet up for dinner or lunch from time to time. It amazed me, though, that no matter how long it had been or how different our lives were, God was always teaching us basically the same things, and it usually felt like no time had passed since we had seen each other. Meredith also always sent me birthday cards and anniversary cards, every year. Once our friend, the other Jennifer, got married several years ago, and we were both in her wedding, it seems God started slowly bringing our paths back together. We communicated a lot more via email and seeing each other more.
Now, she lives about 15 minutes away, and we meet twice a week to work out. We also get together with other friends and family once a month for a game night. I mentioned in my post about my brother that he is the funniest person I know. Well, Mer is the funnest person I know. She makes everything funner (yes, that’s a word because I say it is.) just by being there and being herself. She wants everyone around her to have fun and makes sure no one is left out in her quiet, unassuming way. Her relationship with God amazes me and challenges me, and her unique perspective makes me see things in a way I never thought of, sometimes making an “old” concept new and amazing. I not only enjoy Meredith’s friendship, but I also really respect her.
Happy birthday – a day late – my friend. I pray that God would pour out His blessings on your life and that He would grant you the desires of your heart because you obviously delight yourself in Him. I love you, girl!