I used to shop at Bebe and Arden B.
I know, I know – hard to believe but it’s true.
The fall of 2004 I saw this Bebe gold chain metal hobo bag (yes, you read that right) in a magazine and just HAD to have it. Never mind that it was cheaply made and overpriced and completely impractical – it was flashy and looked like I was wearing a disco ball on my arm. Sold.
This bag greatly mystified the guy I was dating at the time. A very kind boy – but completely wrong for me in every way. I’m sure he had NO idea what to do with me and my Studio 54 bag – no, scratch that, I KNOW he didn’t know what to do with me, hence the reason we only lasted a brief two months. All of that being said, if it weren’t for that boy and that purse what happened next might never have occurred.
The boy and the purse both accompanied me to a birthday party. I don’t remember who it was for anymore – but I do remember this very stylish girl walking up to me and asking me what “her” name was – meaning, yes, the purse. Well – I thought, “Who is this lovely person and why haven’t I met her before?”
Honestly, I was so smitten by her bubbly personality that I just had to get her email and proceeded to pursue her. I’ve done that a few times in my adult life – you know when you just instantly “click” with someone and it’s really effortless and easy and you just HAVE to be friends? That’s the way it was with her.
I have a million and one stories about my dear friend Emily…
How we sat on countless back porches and front steps ruminating over dating and our Christian faith and everything in between.
How she was the person I called after my first date with Vann. A date I wasn’t even sure was a date because I’d never been taken on an actual date before. Picked up the phone in the middle of the night so I could discuss the play-by-play.
How she was the person I called after we got engaged, seven months later, and then helped me plan my wedding, co-threw me the most charming lingerie shower ever, took me honky-tonk dancing for my “last night out” (and wore cowboy boots), and flew to Texas to stand up next to me as my Maid of Honor (sharing the job with my Matron of Honor, my dear friend Liz).
How she kept me sane by sharing a room with me the night before my wedding, yelling at the people in the hallway to “keep it down because the Bride is trying to get her beauty sleep”. How our mutual love of makeup and her natural talent led her to graciously agree to do my makeup for my wedding.
How we flew halfway across the world to Italy for our honeymoon and I was so overwhelmed/exhausted by the entire wedding extravaganza that I called her just to chat (and cry, ‘cause that’s how I roll, although not because of Vann – he always wants me to make that clear)…from Rome, Florence, and Venice.
How she was there with me through both of my pregnancies – brought sugar-free candy to my house when I called her sobbing, having just found out I had gestational diabetes and had to DIET while pregnant, stayed with me in the room before both surgeries, held my babies when they were hours old, and brought in sushi and champagne to celebrate our growing family.
It would take me hours and hours to tell every Emily story – there is so much more: showing up for each and every milestone in my young family’s life, every graduation, every baby dedication…she has cut up pineapple for a baby luau and stirred punch at a 2nd year birthday party.
All of this with the most loving, most giving, most gracious heart I’ve ever known. She has never complained, just shown up. She has been there, through everything. Through a cross-country move to Texas and saying goodbye and miles between us that make it difficult sometimes to connect.
I could go on about my selfishness and how difficult it is to be my friend sometimes – she knows it all too well. I look back over our 8 year friendship and I know I have failed her many times. But she remains a constant, someone who never keeps score or says a bad word about anyone. She loves my family, adores my children, and I’m so happy to say that she and my husband are very dear friends.
I am so thrilled to write that my dear Emily is getting married…and my heart is filled to the brim with joy!! Because there really is no one who deserves it more.
Congrats, my love, from our whole clan…