Monday, September 9, 2013

Friendships that Stand the Test of Time

Hi friends, Lorie here!
When I think about my oldest, most enduring friendships, three people spring to mind. These girls stuck by me during the awkward years of Middle School, the angst of high school and even after we went our separate ways in college. Looking at us on paper, you would never believe that we’d bonded in the first place.

I met Jen when our moms were co-teaching a Sunday school class at our church. It was one of those “mom orchestrated” friendships. You know how it goes: “Lorie, Jen is your age and goes to your school, you should be friends!” With a groan, I agreed to talk to this girl I’d never met. First impression—she was a 5’10’’ ball of curvy, blond energy, and she scared me. I didn’t think I’d ever met anyone with so much enthusiasm, but she was exactly what this shy, not-so-adventurous girl needed.

Lisa and I met later that year. If I was cautious and introverted, Lisa was the opposite. “You think that boy’s cute? Okay, let’s go.” And she would proceed to drag me, shaking in my pegged jeans and Eastlands, to talk to my current crush. Inevitably, he would focus on the blond, Madonna look-a-like at my side. But I didn’t mind, I couldn’t really blame them. Lisa was a force of nature.

Sheila and I became friends when I moved to our large suburban middle school from a catholic school in the inner city. You can imagine my culture shock. Sheila was smart and strong, and she was my anchor in a sea of madness. Like me, she was introspective and enjoyed books and movies. With the patience of a saint she’d listen to me drone on about the latest boy I was meant to spend eternity with. And I stuck by her too, even when she’d signed up to be a German exchange student and stopped shaving her legs a few months early.  Did I mention that Sheila is one of the bravest people I know?
High School Christmas Dance

You might be wondering who I was in this mix…I was the dreamer. The girl with her head in the clouds and her nose stuck in a book. Now that I think about it, even throughout all life’s ups and downs; marriages, kids, career changes, and lost parents, not much has changed.  On some level, we’re still those same girls we were in high school, but through all our challenges we’ve become better versions of ourselves.

You want to know how I know this?

Because two weeks ago, I stood in front of over a hundred family and friends for the launch of my debut novel, and saw three precious and familiar faces in the audience. Jen, blond and gorgeous, her boundless energy now tempered by refinement. Lisa, her battle scars making her more wise, but no less vibrant. And Sheila, all the way from San Francisco, her beautiful smile and steady presence still my anchor.

To say it meant a lot to me to see these three amazing women there at one of the proudest moments of my life, is an epic understatement. Their friendships, individually and collectively, have shaped me into the person I am today—unashamed to share my enthusiasm, more bold and a lot more courageous!

Lorie, Sheila, Jen and Lisa at the DOON launch party

Now it’s your turn Honest readers. Do you have friendships that have stood the test of time? Tell me about it. 

Lorie Langdon is the author of DOONinspired by Lerner & Loewe'sBrigadoon, co-written w/Carey Corp. Now available in hardcover and ebook from BLINK (a new young adult imprint of Zondervan/HarperCollins).
Join the DOON journey:


Pintip said...

Lorie, what a wonderful post. My favorite part was the photo of the four of you at the end. How truly special to be friends still after all these years. And you're right -- no matter how much life changes, we're still ourselves at the core, only wiser. I'm so glad you were able to have your oldest friends with you on such a special night. :)

Lorie Langdon said...

Thanks, Pintip! It was fun to be able to write about these amazing women! I feel very blessed. :D

Sheila Kappeler said...

Holy mackerel! My mind is blown by the dance picture :) Throughout my adult life, my "test" for sizing up new acquaintances is finding out how long they've known their oldest friends. I count myself so lucky and proud to have known you all so long--"years" are gracefully giving way to "decades." (And, fortunately, 80's hair has gracefully given way to something more akin to what nature intended.)

It was such a joy to witness as you brought your dreams to fruition! You can see how proud we all are.

Kimberly said...

Aw, Lorie! What a sweet, sweet post about friendships and dreams and the amazing overlap of both of them in your life. I'm so happy for you that they were able to be with you on your special day.
I'm all teared up now. Thanks a lot. :-)

Lorie Langdon said...

Hi Sheila! Agreed on the hair...I do sometimes miss those chicken-claw bangs though. ;) Yes, decades as friends is quite the accomplishment!

Lorie Langdon said...

Thanks, Kim!
I'm sorry to make you cry!! When I wrote this, I cried like a baby. Didn't cry at the book launch or even when I realized I had three of my oldest and dearest friends by my side. It's funny how we process things through our words. ;D

LisainOH said...

I'm beyond proud of you! I've heard it said that God's path is always clearer in the rearview mirror & your personal story couldn't align any closer to that proverb! It's an honor to call you my friend <3
I'm beyond excited to share your novel with my fourteen year old daughter & watch how your work inspires & intrigues her. She can't put DOON down & is doing some marketing work for you among her girlfriends. As a fellow "Girl with Guts" (IBD patient), God is using you to reach out to other young ladies to demonstrate the power of persistence in following the talents God has blessed them with. Much love, Lisa

Lorie Langdon said...

Thank you so much, Lisa! Your words are always so uplifting and tonight this was exactly what I needed to hear. Guess that's what old friends do for each other. :) Love and hugs!!

Kristi Cook said...

Aw, Lorie...that just made me cry!

Lorie Langdon said...

Kristi - Made me cry when I wrote it, so good to know my emotion translated to the page. :)
I'm very grateful to these lovely girls. :D

Anonymous said...

Wow what a beautiful post. Not all friendships last forever we wrote “BFF” in each other year books not really knowing what that meant. Friendships are living things that grow together and apart over the years but we are rooted together. I will always stand beside you in happy times and sad. That’s what a forever friend is, someone who can celebrate your successes and morn your losses. Someone who can pick you up and keep you grounded. I could not be happier for your success. That’s what I want for my children to find friends like mine. BFF

Jen Egbert said...

I need to sign that post.....That was me Jen

Lorie Langdon said...

Beautifully said, Jen. :D It's pretty awesome to have a "forever friend". Love you!
(Think I left my flip flops at your house after hot tubbing on Sunday...guess that means I need to come back on the next cool night and bring my suit. ;)

Jen said...

Any time girl the hot tub is always hot and the wine is always chilled

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