One of my most precious friends lost her Mom to cancer this past year. It was only days before Christmas and after attempting to find a miraculous way to get down to the funeral, we had no options. I really grieved over not being able to be there with her during that time. And yet I know she holds no ill feelings for me not making it. It is interesting how many momentous things in our lives have happened and we have not had the luxury of being there for one another in body, and yet, somehow I always know she knows exactly how I feel, and no matter the changes that occur in our lives the friendship just gently rolls along with them. I really think that our friendship took root during a time that Kate and I's foundations were solidifying, somewhere between childhood and adulthood, and the friendship was sealed in that foundation and weathers all of our life changes.
Kate is the friend that my soul aches for when I am struggling or overjoyed with something. There are countless letters written to her and even more started waiting to be finished. She is the friend of my youth and one who knows my heart so deeply. We have gone through really good times and some really hard times and found our friendship stronger for it. She is the one that can make me cry by just saying hello after not seeing each other for a year. She is the one who can scribble a note to me on a napkin , send it in the mail, and I will walk around with it for days reading it over and over. She has a beauty that just continues to grow with age, both inside and out. I have always felt her love for me , even when I was difficult to love, and I have the letters to prove it. She has the gift of gentleness and compassion for others that is so contagious. Kate is the one who I could spend hours talking with but could also be alright just to sit in silence with.
We met amusingly enough my first year of college and found out that we grew up only 20 minutes away from each other! Here we had to go 600 miles to meet, the Lord certainly has a sense of humor! But how right the timing was! Road trips home from school together became one of the things that entwined or hearts, 12 hours of conversation both ways, lots of coffee, music and laughter! I believe on one break, her car was not going to make it home and my folks were going to send me the bus ticket to come home -I protested and said not unless there is a ticket for Kate too! We were a two for one deal at that time!
Well, Matt's vacation came to be such a blessing.We were able to go to a postponed memorial service for Nancy today, Kate's Mom. Kate and Jay traveled down here from Minnesota to spend the day with family and friends who were unable to make it to the funeral in Missouri . Nancy was honored in memory today with wonderful stories shared. It was so good to see Kate and Jay and hug our old friends. And I am so blessed to have gotten to know her mom over the years of our friendship and it was neat to see how so many of Nancy's strengths and gifts have been carried on in Kate. I am forever grateful for the love Nancy had for Kate and how she raised my sweet friend! What a fun afternoon to get to hear all the fun stories about Nancy and how deeply she touched the lives of others. It was also a wonderful gift to hear Kate sing a song she had written for her mom before she died. Kate! Do not forget to send those lyrics to me! I wish I could have seen your mama's face when you gave her, her own song! Your sung beautifully, just as always! Some day-we will do our duet!
And despite how hard the loss of Kate's mom has been and will be, it is good to know she is with Jesus,who she had a deep love for. And one day Kate will see her mom again. It was a good day, one I am so glad that I can say, I saw my Kate.
After dinner, I went to dig through some old photos from college, to find some fun pics of Kate and I. What fun remembering those days, with a bit of heartache, wishing we were closer to spend more time together. Here are a few of Kate and I over the years....
COLLEGE DAYS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! IN THE WINTER WONDER LAND OF BEMIDJI MINNESOTA!
THIS WAS A KITTEN KATE AND I FOUND IN A PARKING LOT AND SNUCK INTO OUR DORM UNTIL WE COULD FIND A HOME FOR IT! SORRY PIPER FOR ALWAYS BEING SO MUCH TROUBLE(OUR PRECIOUS FRIEND WHO HAPPENED TO BE OUR RA!)
NOW WE ARE GETTING A LITTLE BIT OLDER-MATT AND I ARE NOW MARRIED AND I AM EXPECTING COLE. THIS WAS AT ONE OF OUR GANG'S WEDDINGS.
AND A FEW YEARS LATER, BOTH MARRIED NOW. I BELIEVE THIS WAS ON A TRIP OF MATT AND I'S DOWN TO ILLINOIS TO VISIT MY FOLKS. WHILE WE WERE STILL LIVING IN MN. WE ARE REALLY FORTUNATE TO DRIVE RIGHT PAST KATE AND JAY'S ON OUR WAY BACK AND FORTH TO VISIT MATT'S FAMILY, ALWAYS GIVING US AN AWESOME EXCUSE TO POP IN ON KATE AND JAY AT LEAST ONCE OR TWICE A YEAR! I KNOW THE LORD EVEN WORKED OUT THAT TINY DETAIL WHEN WE RELOCATED! BECAUSE FRIENDS SUCH AS THESE ARE RARE! NOT ONLY IS KATE PRECIOUS TO US, BUT JAY, HER HUSBAND IS ALSO ONE OF OUR INCREDIBLE FRIENDS FROM COLLEGE AS WELL-JUST KEEPING US ALL IN THE FAMILY! SO WHEN WE GET TOGETHER, WE ALL ENJOY LAUGHING ABOUT OUR COLLEGE DAYS!
AND TODAY! THANK YOU JESUS FOR KATE!
Kate, I found these pictures of you and your mom at your wedding. Thought you may like to have them.