Friend

This was the year when I developed a friendship with God. This was the year when I let people in.

I am a solitary, contemplative person. I have always had a small circle of women friends – a handful, five, eight, at a time – women whom I’ve cherished but have kept at a discrete distance. (And stopping to wonder whether I have chosen the incorrect form of discrete, discreet??? is just a distraction, so forgive it, if it’s wrong.)

Then, this year, as my heart was cracking open, as I was being scourged with a love so rich, so thick and hot and sacred, everything and everyone in my life also, came rushing in. After years of holding love at arm’s length, I saw – and I felt – what real love looks like, feels like, is.

The experience was crushingly painful – burning and visceral; it was body-centered, actual, grounded.

It was real.

I saw, with eyes that had not seen, the priceless beauty of each individual soul of each woman – and a few men – whose hearts happened to have linked up with mine somewhere along the way.

In a rush, I remembered:

  • the countless cups of tea, and the stories we shared – and wrote – as we sipped them.
  • the times when they kindly didn’t tell me the truth
  • the times when they, equally kindly, did and though it stung, it changed my life
  • the wisdom, the giggle fits, the text messages when my mother collapsed
  • the rush to NYC to help, to visit, to take me out to lunch
  • the knowing me ‘then’ and ‘when’ and reminding me, when I need it, who I was, and still am
  • the knowing who I could be, who I will be, and gently pushing me up the mountain
  • the yoga classes, sleep-overs, hand squeezes, and rueful smiles

Their beauty, grace and their love dissolved me, leaving me jelly-limbed, breathless, taken apart.

They didn’t mind – they pulled out the combs and compacts that they, always more prepared than I, always carry; they straightened my clothing, smoothed my hair, helped me reapply my lipstick -

what I mean is, they put me back together

They changed me – by letting me change – and loving me, as they always have, any wacky way I turn out to be.

PS This goes for sisters, daughter, son and husband, too.

{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

Megan

eloquent. beautiful. touching. REAL!

Thank you Amy – you are a true inspiration and gift to all the lives you touch.

All the best,

MC

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Stereo

This took my breath away, Amy. The way you write so openly, I would never have guessed that you can be guarded! I’m so glad that true love and friendship caught up with you and outrun you; you deserve nothing less.

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Debra

This is really beautiful. So glad I found your blog via #reverb10.

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Kat Jaibur

Again, you get me thinking. Grateful for the friends who have inspired and uplifted me during this year, who come to give and not just take. Grateful that you and I met and shared a room and tea and that you let me turn on Modern Family and laughed with me (and didn’t pooh-pooh that I wanted to watch TV while on our mini-retreat). Grateful for all of your wisdom and your absolutely soul-stirring writing. And most of all, I’m grateful for good timing… that we would connect during the year you let people in. You have this amazing ability to be humble and open while being strong in who you are, and I love that about you. You also make me realize that I need to ask for help more. This was a really hard year caring for my mom, and I envy you for the friends who came to the rescue for you when your Mom collapsed. I will work on it in the new year.

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Cherry Woodburn

I’m with you Kat.
Wishing you help with your mom. Cherry

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Sally G.

Hi Kat. It’s not easy caring for a parent as you presently are. Complicated emotions can really take their toll.

In addition to continued prayers of strength and hope ~ I also offer you this: instead of ‘working on’ letting others help you more ~ try, instead, to Allow. Often, we’re so capable in all that we do that it never occurs to others how very much we’d appreciate their assistance. Open to receiving ~ and I’ll bet the help and support will flow in abundance.

Much love …

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Amy

Kat – if you haven’t yet read Sally’s comment below, I hope that you do. There’s wisdom there – for both of us. As for you and me, I am so grateful we met- shared a Neti pot (thank Heaven!) and connected IRL

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Kat Jaibur

Thanks, Cherry, Sally and Amy. Sally, such wisdom there… and my favorite word. Allow. Thanks for reminding me. Love to you all.

amanda

powerful stuff! loved it.

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Candace

Beautifully vulnerable Amy :)

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Jenifer Olson

Thank you, Amy, for this wonderful reminder about friends. And special thanks to Rick, Janet, Stephanie, Bob, Laurel, Margaret, J Paul, Jim, Kerry and so many more friends (some of whom I’m still waiting to meet IRL) who’ve reached out and sustained me this year with their love, laughter and light. It seems we all really do “…get by with a little help from our friends.” My prayer is simply that I am the friend that you have been to me…

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Sally G.

Nothing compares to earthly, human friends. Not enough can be said about them either. You’ve expressed your feelings beautifully …

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Tracy Mangold

Terrific. I know I need to do that and I have not really opened myself up this year. You give me hope. Thank you and bless you!

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Amy

:) You – and all the people who came by to leave a comment this week, give ME hope. Big hugs!

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Amy

Big hug and love right back atcha. :)

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