It was a Wednesday night when my husband called me and gave me the news that we had been anxiously waiting for- "He got the job." I honestly couldn't believe it. I got off the phone and cried. I just sat there and cried and cried. Every time I thought I could get up and move on, a memory would flash in my mind and the tears would come streaming down again. My sister's husband got a job out of state and they will be moving far away. I have eight years of memories...when will I stop crying?
She wasn't always a sister-we started out as just friends. I'll never forget the day we met. It had been a few weeks since I delivered my twins, the doorbell rang, and in she walked with her hubby, son, and a meal. She had recently started going to my church, heard that some lady just had twins and immediately knew she wanted to meet me. They came in and were as sweet as ever. I remember when I learned that not only were they going to my church, but they lived just a few blocks from me and a little bud of hope began to form-the hope of a dear friend. That hope has become a reality.
She has five children and I have six. Our children, even though they don't match up exactly in their ages, love each other, and my sister and I, well, we love each other too. It has been amazing to watch our friendship grow. I would never have guessed that we could have been friends. I think some times that we are more different than we are the same. For example: she is tall, I am short. She works out A-lot and thus she is thin. I do not like to work out, am not consistent and thus I am chubby. She LOVES to cook (she has a cooking blog-Family, Food and Fun), I have been afraid of cooking for most of my married life (I do not have a cooking blog). She is originally from Arkansas and I am originally from New York. She enjoys being indoors for days on end, I love to get out and go. Golly, she can read, and read, and read, and well, shamefully I like to stay busy and don't read as much as I should. She is quiet and takes her time to say the right words, I am not quiet and have regretted many times the words that have flown out of my mouth. What else....what else...she has this bravery with delivering her babies, I, although I have gone through five deliveries, have been a complete chicken. She also has this bravery with cooking a meal for any new mom in the church and bringing it to their home. I am not confident that anyone will enjoy my cooking (except my Italian cooking) and am too shy to go over to some one's house to even drop off the meal. Do I really need to go on? We are clearly not two peas in a pod.
So, you ask, how have we become sisters if we are so different. Well, I'll tell you. We liked each other enough to battle through the things where we differ to find the things that are more important that we share in common. For example: We love the Lord with all our hearts, soul, mind and strength. He is everything to us. We have been able to share openly about the Lord and His leading in our lives. We love our children and believe God has given them to us to bless us. We both believe we have been called to home school our children. We love our husbands dearly and are so proud of them. We do enjoy sharing our lives with each other and talking (!) Our husbands have become best friends too. Our husbands are quite different from each other also, but somehow they have managed to become close friends. They help each other work on their cars, building projects, and so much more.
Don't get me wrong, no relationship goes along perfectly and if it's real, it won't. We have misunderstood each other, been so hurt that our friendship was on the brink of ending, but we talked it through, didn't give up, forgave each other, and grew even closer.
I really can't believe it's happening...my sister is moving away! She's going back home to Arkansas. I can hardly type..the tears have so blurred my vision. I have given all I am with no fear or thought of ever loosing her. I can't imagine and don't want to imagine my life, our lives without her or her precious family. I have been challenged to grow up so much in the last few years by her gentle prodding and even by simply watching her life. It feels like a death has entered my life. Everyone says, "you'll talk and keep up through facebook," but I won't be able to hug her, or see her car pull into my driveway, and watch our children with excited squeals hug each other. I won't be able to watch her children grow up. I won't be able to hug them, and kiss them, and have them over for play dates. Simply put- life is going to feel very empty without my sister.
I truly hate that this is happening and I mean that in the most selfish way. I want my life to go on as it has been. I want my sister near me. I want our children to grow up together. I want to get even closer and closer. I don't want this ache in my heart. I want her nearby to call at any time, to drop by and hang out on her front porch while the children play wildly. I want the security of knowing she is right there if I should need her.
I don't know how my heart has a joy for her, but it does. I am truly happy for her to be near her mom and for the kids to have their grandparents around all the time and for her husband to be finally happy in a job where he'll be appreciated. I am glad for them. I guess that's the mark of a true frinedship- even thought I am just so miserable for me, I am happy for her. I really want the best for her.
So, my dear, sweet Rebekah, I will miss you with all my heart. I will miss our talks, and our time together, but I pray that you will find what you have been looking for back home. That you will find a new church and even a new best friend. I'll say goodbye, but know that I'll never let you go.