I have some amazing friends. Today I'm going to write about one of them. You know how there are those people who seem to keep the world spinning on the tip of their finger? Then they roll it down their arms across their shoulder onto the other hand where it continues its spin? Like a Harlem Globetrotter with a basketball, these people juggle life and make it look like a no-brainer. I would say they make it look effortless but I KNOW there is so much effort they put into it that I don't want to even hint at it being an easy thing for them.
That's my friend, Kristen. I have had a lot of friends in my life. Friends I treasure and who have been there for me, and who have in no way let me down. But Kristen flat out amazes me.
She's the mom of four beautiful, spunky girls...all born within a six-year window if I remember correctly. Can you imagine four girls under the age of six under your feet? She made it look like child's play. Can you imagine four girls within the teen years all at once? She can't either but it's coming!!! ha ha (Sorry, K)
She worked nights for a couple years so she would be there with them during their waking hours. Then as the number of girls increased she became a stay at home mom. Now many moms with four kids would consider keeping the kids alive and the house in one piece enough. They would do what they needed to make it each week...keep a step ahead of life, and that would be great. Who could really ask for more? But that's not Kristen. She mommed her kids, cleaned her house, cooked wonderful meals, headed the PTA, organized major anniversaries from a state away (single-handed for in-laws), made every child's birthday every year a celebration for the books. She took the girls on meaningful outings, major vacations, and handled the shopping with four apprentices regularly. I can't even recall all the things she has done but every time I talk to her (and that would be daily...and multiple times per day, thank you... even though she's never lived even in the same state as me), every time I talk to her she is planning something for someone. And here's the clincher...she does it all 200%.
I'm a survivalist. I find 200% to be awe-inspiring...especially when it's how she approaches EVERYTHING.
And when my dad died, though she lived multiple states away and had four little girls to care for, and had every excuse in the book for just offering support over the phone...she came. She was physically there for me, for my family and knowing no stranger she jumped in the middle of everything and did all she possibly could to relieve others of any duties they were tending to.
You know what that is? Don't just call it friendship. It is love in action. Everything she does, she does with quality and she knows no excuses and makes none, because she doesn't find a need for any. She shows up. She completes things. She loves anyone who walks into her life who gives her half a chance.
And yet, this wonderful amazing woman does not realize that she is a success. Top of the corporate ladder? No. But a success. Coming from a background where everyone of meaning to her has let her down, she has been a stability to four beautiful girls and a force in my life, too. (And I'm quite sure that her other friends would say the very same thing.)
K, you are a success. You live and you give of yourself completely. I love you. And I want to be like you when I grow up. ;)