Would you believe I have a friend I have never met? It’s true and what’s even crazier is that I met her during the first few months of COVID through a social media post. I know it may sound crazy but stay with me. I have to be honest with you. I love to talk and I love to meet new people and learn about them. My gift for gab comes directly from my father and COVID felt like a thief to my social calendar. I had just given a presentation at our local historical society and had three more events scheduled in the months to come. All cancelled because of COVID and I was so disappointed as I had been working so hard to reach this point of teaching and meeting new folks in the area.
My new social media friend was a fellow Ohioan so right there I felt like we would certainly have a few things to chat about. I was bit nervous at first calling someone I had never spoken to, but figured what do I have to loose. I get some quiet adult time and boy did I take advantage of it! One Saturday, I gave my new friend a call, chatted over a common subject and then had to finish up the conversation the next day because the couple hours weren’t enough to wrap things up. Our conversations that followed our initial often times ended up carrying over to later that day/night or following day.
I never expected to have made that phone call and meet someone who I just “clicked with. Neither of us did, but I’ll tell you this I am forever grateful for the friendship that has formed. At the time of our first chat, I was feeling cooped up, cut off from the world, and just overwhelmed by the swirling events that stretched from here in the middle back around the world. I was trying to be a teacher, mom, wife, fur momma and everything in between and it had started to catch up with me. The phone call with my new friend, who I could tell right off the bat was genuine, raw, and real was the kind of transparent friendship I was happy to engage in during a time I knew I couldn’t be anything but me.
I have never been good at making a lot of friends my age, but I’ve always gravitated to making friends who have a lot more life experience than me. I think it’s because growing up I was always a bit more mature but also had decided a long time ago that I was finished getting caught up in the little things and that life was about so much more, and my older friends had figured that lesson out.
I’m pretty sure God has something to do with this new friendship of mine but neither my friend or I have figured it out. What I can say is that we have found through our conversations that while our lives differ, they are in a way a mirror image. We’ve had experiences that are not the same, yet we’ve learned the same or very similar lesson. We’ve traveled unexpected roads that took us to where we are today and we wait to find where God is leading us both as we kind of wonder if our lives will collide into something together. But maybe it’s simpler than that.
Maybe God knew our hearts and dare I say it, used social media to connect us to get us through what was coming our way last year? Maybe he knew we would be able to lift one another up in a way no other person could because in this friendship we weren’t protecting or expecting something from one another? It’s still a puzzle to me but I have to say that over the past year, our conversations that were often stretched between lengths of time helped carry me through the year. The conversations not only gave me something to look forward to, but it allowed me to reflect on who I am, who our family is and a much needed reminder of where we once were in this world and potentially where we may go-strong reminders if you ask me.
Coming out at the end of the COVID tunnel of somewhat of an isolation, I am beginning to pick up the pieces of the past year that are going to shape me for who I am meant to be in the future. Maybe this exercise of being cooped up was a time for a hard pivot into renewing my trust in Him so that I am ready for the plans that lie ahead which are still unknown to me. What I do know is that we must ever underestimate some of the smallest of moments. We mustn’t disregard them as insignificant because they can collectively propel us into the next greatest chapter of our lives.
From the cold + rainy middle…