Life's little adventures, accompanied by a running watch

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Friends are gifts

Last week, my nieces’ friend/classmate/fellow athlete was killed in a car accident.  She was driving with two other friends in the car, apparently lost control, and hit a tree.  She died at the scene.  Fortunately, her two friends, though injured, are expected to survive.  Unfortunately, it is believed that none were wearing seatbelts.  A beautiful young 16 year old….gone in an instant.

This terrible tragedy brought some sad memories flooding back for me.  Back when I was about 22 years old, I lost my friend Ellen in a car accident.  Driving home alone, she hit a tree located in the highway median strip.  This bright, bubbly, beautiful, funny girl was gone.  I looked up to Ellen.  She was a few years older than I and was just so great to be around.  We worked together, but we laughed together more.  On that Friday, I remember waving goodnight to her and offering the casual, “See you Monday!” It was a week before Christmas and it was far from festive, with Monday never arriving for Ellen.

I have friends who have come and gone through normal situations that are a part of life.  I have friends who I’ve reignited the flame with; I have friends I had to let go of because the relationship had grown toxic.  I have work friends, running friends, puppy friends, and of course, Facebook and Blogger friends.  I smile at the unexpected text from a friend that simply says, “Hi” or “I miss you”.  Through my old and my new friends, I feel truly blessed.  Friends like Ellen were perhaps only meant to come along in a short, but meaningful way.  Others like my nieces’ friend will stay frozen in time as a youthful 16 year old.  Both were gone too soon, but I believe both packed such a punch, that even though their lives were short in length, what they brought us was something big enough to remember for a very long time.


The other night, we had a surprise visit from a friend and her children.  Actually, we technically never saw them.  They knocked on the door and fled.  But before fleeing, they left this –


They made our night.  And I think we made theirs….by not catching them!

When we give ourselves wholeheartedly to friends and receive the same back, it’s such an amazing and satisfying feeling.  Gifts are meant for giving, but with friendship, it is meant to be given and received – at the same time.

Friends are truly gifts. 



14 comments:

  1. What a wonderful post!!! Friends are definitely gifts and sometimes we need a reminder of that because it is so easy to take them for granted!!
    I hope your niece is doing OK processing the loss of a friend at such a young age!

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    1. Thanks Kim :) I'm sure my nieces (all 3 sisters) will support each other as only sisters do, but I imagine this will leave a mark.

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  2. Oh man, that is so tough for a 16 year old to process. Luckily, none of my friends or I ever got in accidents in high school, but sometimes I look back on that and think it is a blessing given some of the dumb (though not terrible) things we did. I am going to see friends and family this weekend back home and I am looking forward to it!

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    1. It is amazing how some of us survive our teenage years!!! I was also fortunate in not have to deal w/ death til I was almost 20, but it sure is never easy.

      Enjoy your friends back home this weekend :)

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  3. What a beautiful and teary post. Friends are indeed a blessing. Life is fragile and is a gift. This is a lesson I try to instill in my daughter...to cherish each moment and know each moment is a gift. Each person was created for a special reason and they will achieve what they are meant to achieve. Losing my dad is still devastating to me...losing a child is so hard to imagine but yet something I face on a regular basis at work when donations come in in memory of a young person. Breaks my heart each and every time but makes me remember how blessed and lucky we all are.

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    1. Thanks Erica :) I know we get so busy and caught up in "stuff" that we forget what you worded perfectly, "Each person was created for a special reason and they will achieve what they are meant to achieve." Amen to that!

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  4. Very nice reminder of how precious life is and how we all take it for granted.

    I love the BOO gift! So cute. I may start that around here. :)

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    1. Yes indeed MIchelle! I've already planned a BOO to someone else because of this :)

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  5. Beautiful post, honey. I remember that time as though it were yesterday and I believe that it was one of life's defining moments that helped you develop into the true and loyal friend you are.

    I love you ~ Mama

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    1. Aw thanks Mama :) You're the best!

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  6. Your friendship is the most precious thing I've ever received..... Love you !!

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  7. Great post. I've had a lot of friends and co-workers it seems like who have been struck by tragedy lately whether it's losing someone they love or being hit by a terrible illness. It all serves as reminders that we are never guaranteed tomorrow - not ourselves and not our family and friends. We don't want to dwell on this stuff, but just gentle reminders that we should be better to people in general.

    The "Boo" thing hasn't seemed to have caught on in my neighborhood, I've seen tons of people posting about it on FB...maybe I should start it, but kind of late now.

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    1. Thanks Michael. My feelings exactly! And we just paid it forward to another neighbor, though I'm sure the goodies we stuck in there will totally give us away :)

      I bet "Boo" could come in different forms.....so many holidays, so many ways to say "Boo".....:)

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