Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The most wonderful friend...

So I get on MySpace tonight and I see that Lea posted a new blog. Yes Lea blogs but only on MySpace I have tried talking her into joining blogger world because she is a terrific writer, but she insists that MySpace works just fine for her. Anyway little did I know that I would be reading about ME. All I can say is that I am speechless and very emotional, I am so LUCKY to have someone like her in my life. Lea, you made me feel so important and loved. Hope you don't mind I did a bit of copying and pasting. Thanks for being YOU, Love you too!!!!

Happy Birthday Dear Friend(s)
Current mood: blessed

I happen to know of SO many people who have October birthdays (me being one of them). I can't help but feel this overwhelming urge to tell you about a few of the awesome, dear friends I am blessed with who share an October birthday month.

Today, I'm taking the opportunity to share one of my closest friends with you: Shelly. Most of my fellow myspace friends also know Shelly but I'm not certain everyone knows the story about how we met or why our relationship has stood so strong and steadfast over the years.

Flashback to 5th grade - Whitehall Middle School. There I was, in class and in walks this cute, dark haired, dark eyed, petite girl sporting the biggest dimples I've ever seen! (Ok, she was also wearing some pretty big glasses too, but in her defense, they were the coolest things for that time.) I'll never forget the outfit she was wearing: a matching shirt and pants that were both made out of sweater like material, with a pattern that somewhat resembled a bumble bee. I know this may sound strange, but come on - it was the 80's!! And in all honesty, she really pulled it off!! Little did I know that her warm smile and friendly hello to me, was the starting of a lifetime friendship.

It was in that class I discovered so much about her. During Project CHARLIE I learned she was a bit more shy that I realized. She INSISTED I put on the board she liked hearts so she knew which one was her when she came back into the room. (Guess you had to be there to completely understand this one.) Also during this class was when she sought out my advice on whether or not she should kiss a certain boy who was asking (for saving embarassment, I won't mention any names). ;-)

It was her I turned to for boy advice since she always seem to have the right answer. It was her I shared my fears with, my dreams with and even band class with. Yes - band. Boy - those were some fun times!! (NOT!) I believe it was Shelly and I always competing for last chair! HA! We did have fun teasing Mark and Vernonell - oh and Gene, the only guy who played flute. I'll never forget the one band concert everyone was teasing me insisting I called Mark just before and sang him "I Just Called to say I Love You". To this day, I have no clue where that came from or just who made that call. To clear the air - it was NOT me!) By the way - those band sweaters were SO cool!!! (Not!!)

Fast forward to freshman year. Wow! What a change! High school!! That summer, Shelly decided to stay in band ( I basically ditched her, sorry girl). She failed the first semester because she didn't attend summer band camp. That being the whole reason I didn't stay in band - camp was held at Blue Lake Fine Arts Camp that summer. Since I grew up there, there was NO WAY I was going to attend band camp there. (If I only knew about "American Pie" back then!) Thank God Shelly did stay in band because through her being in band, I was able to met Tom.

We shared many good memories throughout high school. Who to date, where to hang out, drama class, Everyday Living class with wearing of the empathy belly (easy A) and who would drive to school (mainly me). During these years, I spent a great deal of time at her house and with her family. Doing so, I always felt more than welcome and I became part of her family. I watched Steph go through her "Darlene" phase and helping to tighten her back brace. I watched little Katie get blisters on her thumbs from playing Mario Brothers on the original Nintendo and twist her hair into tangled messes. We were able to ask her mom any sex question we could think of, and she would give us answers. We talked about how Uncle Jer was so cool - and SO hot!! We had Mary Kay parties at her house, went for walks with boys and had numerous sleepovers. We shared dances and she didn't even yell at me when I splashed steak sauce on the collar of her dress! (I'm still sorry about that...)

We graduate and she ends out in Norton Shores. By this time, she met a "cute guy who drove a Beretta" (that's how she first described John to me) and they get married. They have a beautiful baby boy and I still visit her fairly regularly and we take baby Tyler to eat at Subway. John was working nights and Tom was working a 2nd job at the local hobby store.

In 2000, Tom and I are getting married and we ask both her and John to be in our wedding. She was pregnant with her beautiful daughter Mackenzie and she is supposed to be taking it easy and keeping her feet up. So here it is, my big day and I'm following her around with a folding chair reminding her she is supposed to be "taking it easy". Well, she is more worried about me having a wonderful day. She ends up standing outside freezing during our ceremony, dancing for the bridal dance (even though I encouraged her not to) and making my day all the more memorable because she and John shared it with us.

Shortly after, we were looking to buy a house. There just happened to be one for sale right next door to John and Shelly. Of course I was hesitant to take a look at it - how in the WORLD would Shelly feel if we move in next door?? I should have known she was MORE than thrilled and even was the one to suggest it to us. A few months later we move in and we couldn't have made a better choice for neighbors. We hung out pretty regularly at their house with other couples and their kids (Tom and I were still childless at this point). Shelly was always having get togethers and since John is a big kid himself, he had all the newest gaming systems and a great TV to play them on.

Shelly was the 2nd person I told I was expecting my first baby. She never missed a beat when she offered to watch him for us! Wow - how great that turned out to be! A sitter directly next door who is already considered family. I couldn't have prayed for a better place for our boys to spend their days.

Here it is, 20 years later, and we are still "family". I seriously do not think our kids have the slighest clue they really are not related! And I couldn't ask for it to be any other way! Her mom is my boys "nanny", her grandma is "grandma" and her entire family treats us wonderfully and includes us in EVERTHING!! I know there are MANY other things I am not including in this...but what I've shared are some of the highlights.

My point here is, Shelly is the most wonderful, caring, considerate person to everyone she meets. She has treated us and welcomed us like family and that is something not a lot of people can say. She is a therapist, mom, aunt, sister, wife, sitter, writer, and coach. But most important to me, she is my friend...and a "sister" by choice!!

Love you girl!!
Happy deserve the very best year yet!!!


Theresa said...

Happy Birthday,Shelly! Thanks for sharing Lea's blog! That is so AWSOME!!! Now I have to go and comment on Myspace for Lea!

Hope you had a GREAT DAY!

jennie said...

My plea to Lea...

She is a talented writer and I really think she would love all the support from other bloggers.

You guys are lucky to have had each other for so long and to still be so close(literally and as friends!) :)

Jennifer Witham Buck / Graceful Expressions said...

Thanks for sharing what Lea wrote.. you are very lucky to have her for a friend! Reading her note, I recalled meeting her for the first time in ninth grade (and you too!) What a great story (recalled with such detail!)I am sure you will treasure it.