But let me back up.
In 2008 Brent and I graduated from our colleges, finally got married, and then traversed hundreds of miles away to the big, scary city of Louisville, Kentucky.
I was horrified at the thought of living in a city. I was lonely. I was scared. I was starting a new job. I was starting a new marriage. The friends I had spent four years pouring my life into in college were now scattered across the country like a tube of spilled glitter.
This went on for quite some time. I cried many a tear. And then we played on a little co-ed softball team with some of the interns that Brent was getting to know, meaning I actually was going to get to SPEAK TO PEOPLE! It was excellent. After our first ball game, we were all sprawling on the grass, stretching or pretending like we were stretching so the others would actually think we used our muscles [ha! I fooled them]. That's when it happened: This girl who spelled her name with an extra "A" came over to me [she wasn't even going to go to the trouble of fake stretching…I liked her already].
"Hey," Meagan said "…" I don't know exactly what we talked about next but somewhere in there she said, "I know we haven't been married much longer than you guys but if you ever need to talk to someone when like, ya know, he leaves the shower curtain outside of the tub instead of inside or whatever, let me know."
A week later I was driving home from school and Brent called, "Let's invite Meagan and Shane over for supper…tonight." My brain freaked out a little, thinking about figuring out what to make for supper and how to clean the apartment in the 2-3 hours I would have if we did invite them. But then, I thought about how lonely I had been in our little one bedroom apartment, how stressed work was, how big the city was, and I said, "Okay. Give them a call and let me know if it works."
Two and half hours later, fettucini alfredo was on the table, with some sliced apples and apple dip and there was a knock at the door. In they walked, and though it may sound terribly cliche to say, our lives haven't been the same since.
I pretended to ignore Shane picking the onions out of the pasta, and we talked and talked and realized how similar our hometowns were, how much we had in common. We talked about WWII, and books, and then we cleared the table and walked the three feet to the living room. We were going to watch a movie, but that never happened because we were too busy talking. I laughed until I cried that night. At at one or two in the morning when they left, Brent and I knew we had found our "lifers." [I wrote about it the next day, because it made such an impact on me.]
Since then we have gone on vacations with them, we helped them move from Louisville, then we said goodbye as they moved the Delaware and we moved back to Missouri. We've celebrated holidays with them, we've traveled many hours to see them, and played many, many a card game with them. We've sat, rather cozy, four across on one of our couches to watch a movie and share a bowl of popcorn. We've crashed their hotel rooms when they travel anywhere near us, and we've held back the tears [or not] as one of us has always had to drive away.
It's strange to realize we've only actually lived in the same place for a period of about a year, and half of that time was unfortunately wasted, not knowing the gold mine of friendship waiting for us on the other side of the city.
We've grown accustomed to the distance, and it's amazing how it hasn't hindered a thing. We can go months without talking, just staying connected via blogs*, and a few texts here and there. And then one of us will get that aching feeling and we need to skype or do a marathon phone call.
We've always pestered the other about moving closer, or next door, or just moving in [though this could pose a little issue because Shane isn't sure about babies, though he is smitten with Blythe, and I'm not sure about dogs, though Elliot and I have an understanding].
That is why last fall when we got a phone from them, we weren't sure if we could actually believe them. They told us they were moving. This part was not a surprise as they move quite often [see above ;)], but then they told us where: the Kansas City area! They would be a little over an hour away, practically neighbors for all we cared, as Shane had taken a worship position at a church there.
Last week they packed up their uhaul and drove and drove and drove. And now they are here. HERE! We thought it would never happen. I never wanted to live in Louisville, but it birthed several great friendships, and gave us Meagan and Shane forever. When we left we never thought we'd be able to just hop in the car and visit them for just a day. When we left we thought we were stuck with phone calls and long distance drives, and packed suitcase trips to maintain our friendship.
God has a funny way of knowing what you need, exactly when you need it, does He not?
And so tonight, I am going to make another little pasta dish for old time sakes, and we are going to hang out with our lifers that God dropped into our lives almost five years ago!
|Last July at their place in Kentucky [though Elliot, their dog, is not in the picture, you can see the love in Blythe's eyes as she looks at her]|
*Meagan's blog HERE