Friday, June 8, 2012

When we can live next door.

Recently I observed the following interaction between two people's Twitters (yeah, I was on Twitter briefly. It has since been deleted. Too much stimulation for this girl's ADD brain.).

One friend commented on missing the other- something along the lines of "You live too far away!!!".
The other friend wrote back, "I know!! I can't wait til heaven when we can be next door neighbors!!!".

Oh man did that strike a chord.

I sent this card to Tamara for her birthday last fall.
I drew in a little Starbucks between our imaginary houses.

I have been actively, achingly missing my friends lately. I am feeling a deep longing to be doing regular life with them.

My trip to Wheaton last month was wonderful, and the best part was lots of casual time with my close girlfriends. I went shopping and drank coffee and talked for hours with Tamara. I took meandering evening walks through the neighborhood and cuddled on the couch watching Modern Family and talked for (more) hours with Christine. It was just what I needed, the perfect time with them.

And at points I could barely shake my sadness.

I was super surprised- and then I was SUPER irritated with myself! What kind of a jerk is so ungrateful as to feel sad over something like an awesome trip and lots of time with people I love?! When I love my life in Oregon and CHOSE IT and they love their lives there and I am SO SO lucky to have such great friends near AND far?!

Yeah well, unfortunately (as I would tell anyone else who tried it)- lecturing yourself about how you should feel (whether or not you're right), while so much fun and all, really is not all that productive.

I love where I live and I love the life I have chosen. I love my friends and where they are and what they're doing. I am grateful, and I would not change anything.

But I just miss them. Last year was just... life. Christine and I were involved in each other's daily lives, talking about work and relationships and what to buy at Target- as it all happened. I could stop by Josh and Meghan's apartment and go for a run or grab a bite of whatever delicious thing she'd just cooked on any random week night. A Friday night of Thai food and wine and a long conversation with Tamara happened regularly, and did not require a plane ticket.

I did all of those things in my eight days in Wheaton. It felt like being home- like the most normal, natural thing in the world. And somehow, this time, it sunk in that it's not. This past month since coming back, as I've realized it more and more- that those moments are not my daily life, and more than likely never will be again apart from a few occasional days of vacation...

Well... I've been sad.

I don't regret one bit of this decision, of pursuing this degree and definitely not of putting roots down in this community.
And I am so thankful for my friends' lives, for the blessings filling their Illinois worlds. For rhythms which are joyful and healthy, for jobs and church homes and husbands that love them so well.

Mostly, I am just so thankful I have these friends. Near or far, they are so life-giving for me. Every time I get off the phone with one of them after an hour of laughter and chatting that feels like we might as well be in each other's kitchens, the multiple times a week I send or receive a quick text for prayer over anything from a long day and a crabby attitude to paralyzing fear or deep pain- I feel filled up to the brim with thankfulness and joy. How blessed am I, to have such deep relationships with such wonderful women?

I just really hate not living near them anymore.

And I can't wait til heaven when we can live next door.

Talking to Tamara while I drink coffee on my couch... as she drinks coffee 2100 miles away on her couch.
(Actually, I think she was in her car. Pretty sure there was coffee, though).

 Vegging with Christine last month. A best friend and a purple fuzzy blanket... How life should be.


joy.meeder said...

EMILY! STOP STEALING MY THOUGHTS AND THEN WRITING THEM PRETTIER THAN ME...But seriously I literally just got home and got super anxious thinking about leaving Argentina and certain friends here and I told myself, "But one day you'll be in heaven and see them again-this isn't the end so just freakin' calm down, Joy." And it helped a little bit but I know I'll still miss them a ton. Reading this was God's gift to me in helping me to process this all a thanks for being awesome :)

Lindsay said...

You sent me that card once, too. :)

I know how you feel... I can't believe we're leaving Bolivia in mere days. Even though it is hard to leave and it makes me sad to know a significant part of our relationships are ending (Skype just doesn't cut it all the time), I am thankful that I have the sadness. It's a lot better than never having met all of these wonderful people before. If I still lived next door to old friends, I never would have made the new ones.

Miss you, friend!

Unknown said...

GAAAA I miss you so much!! I am so thankful to have you in my life ... We need to start planning my trip out there to see you! Giant hugs and snuggles ... xoxo

Unknown said...

lol that was from me, Christine, i didn't see where to leave my name and with the number of friends you have who miss you, are thankful for you, want to come see you, and would send you hugs and snuggles, i don't think "unknown" is going to be very helpful ;)

Human Needs Global Resources Covenant, 2009

As fellow travelers on this journey, we commit to this covenant before God. Lord, in Your mercy, hear these our prayers:

When confronted with scarcity, need, and inadequacy, may we be nourished by the Bread of Life and the Cup of Salvation. Abundance overflows from Your table, sustaining all who come in faith. Father, help us.

When monotony blurs our vision and dulls our senses, may we encounter others as Christ did, through intentional presence in daily life, submitting as clay to be formed into vessels filled with the Spirit. Christ, guide us.

When wounded by the fractured condition of Your people, may we be united by Your Lordship in faith, hope, and love; seeing, as through the facets of a diamond, the beautiful spectrum of Your light reflected onto Your holy Church joined in praise. Spirit, empower us.

When all Creation groans, afflicted by injustice and driven to despair, may the promise of redemption root us in the hope of Your Kingdom: "Behold, I am making all things new!"

Holy Trinity, send us now into the world in peace, and grant us strength and courage to love and serve You with gladness and singleness of heart.