I guess I’m in the season of life where I’m so occupied living life and keeping up with all my projects and everything I need to do as a mother, caregiver, teacher, and wife that I just can’t seem to find the time to write blog posts and letters to friends about myself.
It’s not like I never miss it, though. There are times when I just want there to be someone who knows what’s going on, who can laugh with me at the funnies, smile at the kids’ new accomplishments, give an e-hug and encourage me through the new challenges, someone I can tell the daily struggles and updates to, who is “on the same page” as I am. There’s a difference between telling someone who’s trying their best to listen—but not really getting it—and someone who really, really knows exactly what you are feeling and expressing, and what level of importance something you’re saying holds in your heart.
Growing up, I never had many friends. My biggest lament as a teen was that I didn’t know how to make friends. In a way, I’m glad I got used to being a loner, to the point that now I don’t seek out or crave big social events and partying, but in my own way, I enjoy the rich and full life I am blessed to have.
I have the best husband I could have dared to hope for and love being with my children more than doing anything else in the world. I can tell my husband lots—and try to, in the midst of the busy life we both lead. We try to listen, encourage, and be the friend the other needs. But our areas of expertise, and our focuses, wavelengths, dreams, and all, are different—and need to be, in order to cover everything that needs to be covered in our home and family, making a well-rounded base for our children’s growth and care.
Once upon a time, I opened a Facebook account … but don’t bother looking for me! Even if you find me, you’ll just be disappointed at my blank, empty space! It was an attempt to hook up with old friends I’d lost contact with during a few years of travel, followed by marriage, beginning a family, and moving to a new country. But instead of feeling a sense of “home” and excitement at reigniting fun, cozy friendships, I had the unexpected reaction of tinges of depression. The glimpses I got of my friends’ lives were like splashes of cold water. They had all moved on and were doing quite fine without me! No matter how close we had been, and all the secrets and dreams, fun times, laughs, and tears we had shared, it was all water under the bridge, as life flowed along.
Thankfully, within the next day or two, unexpected sources of friendship poked their heads up, all at the right time to lift my spirits. A few unexpected emails and phone calls, a couple of visits, and even a handwritten note. Someone “up there” knew, and timed these right. I pulled through and am back to my happy self again. I also rarely—if ever—visit Facebook.
The thing is, I realized that the fact that we’re not in touch much doesn’t mean the friendship I had with these people is ended. If any of my seemingly long-gone friends were in need and asked me to help and be there for them, I absolutely would, and I’m pretty sure they feel the same way. I saw I needed to adjust my thinking and not have it so centered on, “A friend is only someone who is always there to listen to me, and makes me feel important to their happiness.” Our friendship is just in a different phase from where it used to be, and there’s nothing wrong with that.
Then the most encouraging thought of all came this morning: God keeps a blog of my life! Even though I don’t have time to write a diary, a blog, or heaps of personal letters with a play-by-play account of my life, He knows it all and is keeping track. My every move, thought, action, word, decision, tear, smile, emotion, illness, adventure, scrape, thrill, idea, and dream has been and is being recorded. It could be an uncomfortable thought in some cases, I suppose. But today I’m glad for it.
Even if I never get around to writing a book about my life, that’s being taken care of. And I have a friend 24/7 to talk with and listen to, who knows how my heart feels every moment of the day. Jesus is the best!