This is Margaret. She is one of my great blessings and cherished friends. If I could, I’d give all of you a friend as dear as Margaret. If I searched every dictionary out there, I still couldn’t find the words to express how much she means to me. I suppose that’s because friendship isn’t measured in words…it’s measured in memories.
Margaret and I go way back through a lifetime of memories. I was still a teenager when she was my university professor. Then she became my mentor. Then a mother to an orphaned me. And now a friend who doesn’t spare my feelings to let me know what I’m doing wrong and how I can improve.
Margaret believes in me. She prays for me. She calls me to ask, “How are you doing?” (WHO does that?)
A true friend never shades you, never stands in that little ray of light that life’s directed right at you…they step back so you can grow, but stay close so you know you’re not alone. Margaret has not only done that, she’s brought the light when my world was nothing but darkness.
She and I could not be more different. She comes from a different family background, a different economic standing, a different faith, and our politics collide. Her life’s experiences in no way mirror mine. Yet we’ve forged an inexplicable friendship, and I just want to share her wonderfulness with you. With the whole wide world.
When I think of my friends I think of each as a unique flower that makes for a beautiful garden…a sanctuary of sorts where I go to for safety, love, peace and inspiration. Oh, and truckloads of laughter and fun. Friendship is my refuge and my rescue.
Yesterday after lunch at PF Changs, Margaret cracked open her fortune cookie and laughed. It read: The best years of your life are ahead of you.
I cried. You see, even though she doesn’t look like it, and most assuredly doesn’t act like it, Margaret is well past 90. So I’m just hoping beyond hope that fortune cookies don’t lie. And I’m hoping that you’ll take the time and make the effort today, to connect with a flower in your friendship garden…bring it water, bring it light, bring it love. That’s how gardens grow, my friend. And you all make mine beautiful.