I met them in 1997. Some of us weren't even 18 yet. We were tall, excited, diverse freshmen propelled by our height to try something new. We had no clue what going out to that faithful lake on the outskirts of Carrboro would mean for our lives, both in the few short years at UNC and for the lifetime that lay on the other side of graduation.
I'm not sure exactly when in that first year these girls became an indelible part of my firmament. Perhaps it was in Pam's van at 4:45am or at the bridge with Ports to row and Starboards to back or maybe in the kitchen at Vance Street. At any rate, it happened and we've somehow managed to see each other almost semi-annually since graduation, despite being on opposite coasts with insanely busy work schedules. Through showers and weddings and graduations and now babies, we just pick right up where we left off and the hours fly by unnoticed.
This weekend was just such an occasion. The stars aligned and we were all able to meet at Lake Lure for a very brief but amazingly soul-soothing and much-needed weekend.
We've grown a bit since we met 12 years ago. There were nine of us this weekend...well ten if you count the newest and still-forming addition to our happy menagerie. Between us we have a photographer, an SF medic, a paleontologist, two engineers, a pediatrician, a family practitioner, an (almost) attorney, two insanely energetic but amazingly well behaved canines, two very quirky felines, and a snaggle-toothed 9-month old fondly referred to as 'Green 11.'
The topic of blessings came up this weekend, as it so often does when we four get together. We do a very good job of appreciating the momentous gifts we've been given and enjoying the love and laughter and happiness we all share. But, sometimes, one does have to wonder why some seem to have it so exceptionally good. Have we been given all of this to serve a higher purpose or is this a reward from past lives well lived? Have we unknowingly cultivated the foundation and are now reaping the harvest or were we just lucky enough to be born at the right place in the right time? Does one get a blessings limit, so to speak, or does one beget another like a glorious snowball?
My mother used to say "Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out." And while I think this is a brilliant observation, it does seem like the four of us have been bestowed an incredibly well-stacked hand. The purpose of this I have yet to identify, but I figure as long as I enjoy the heck out of my life now, it will all become clear at some point.
In the mean time, blessed I am and grateful I will always be.
Thank you Heather, Steph, and Rae (and Andras, Dan, and Matt).
Time with you always recharges me.