Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… it has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.
I unloaded my baby boy from the car and walked my way into the crowded grocery store, child on hip. Only after carefully applying hand sanitizer to my little one’s hands and wiping down the shopping cart with a disinfectant wipe, I placed him in on top of the colorful cart cover I laid out, so he was sure to avoid ALL germs. We walked the produce aisle, grocery list in hand, carefully inspecting the bananas.
Just a typical day. A typical trip to Fred Meyer. But not typical at all, because it was at that moment… that moment, that God answered my prayers.
“Is that your car with the Young Life bumper sticker on the back?” I heard a breathless question from another shopper standing next to me. I looked up to see a friendly, warm face smiling at me. She too, had a young child in her cart. She too, looked the very essence of a first time parent who was just starting out on the journey of motherhood, much like myself.
I was drawn into a quick conversation with her amongst the tomatoes and lettuce, discussing my affiliation with a beloved ministry and her interest in it, an introduction of our babies and each other, and ending in the exchange of emails. I walked away thinking how nice she was. How much we already seemed to have in common.
Fast forward six years later and a friendship unlike any other has evolved. Play dates turned into once a week co-op, phone calls turned into walks to the park with our babies and a small group with three other amazing women, and family meals shared together have built a foundation of lifelong friendship. We have experienced life together in all it’s bounty, laughing and joking. And we have shared loss, catching each other’s tears. We have worked together, served together, and played together, raising our kids in a community that is so very rare. A community that I have never known and had prayed for for so long.
And, God knew. On that day, many years ago, what this mama heart needed… friendships with women that were real and authentic. He knew I needed other mamas to do life with. Side by side. Together. Through all of the beauty and all of the ugly. And, He provided it extravagantly.
This family is the epitimy of fun. Their girls are beauties, inside and out. They live life to the fullest, giving of themselves to others over. and over. and over again. D is the first person to offer a home cooked meal, to offer to watch kids, to pray fervently for her friend’s needs. This family has shown up in our life time and time again. And, I am forever grateful. I know the Lord has AMAZING things in store for them. I am excited to see His plan unfold.
Baldwins, my heart was to capture just an ounce of your family’s love for one another through these photos. Love to you all.