Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.
~ Psalm 30:5
For all your troubles I give you laughter. ~ Francois Rabelais
Tomorrow morning...very, very, early... I am leaving on a jet plane. I am headed down to sunny Southern California to meet up with over a dozen old college friends. Some of these friends are women I have stayed in touch with and have seen at reunion gatherings over the years, and some are women I haven't seen in 20+ years. Truthfully, some of them are women I had no reason to think I would ever see again. But thanks to one special friend we all share in common, we are gathering together to celebrate the gift of life and old friends.
As excited as I am about this quick getaway and time spent with dear friends, I know the entire weekend will be touched with the sad reality that the friend responsible for bringing us all together is conspicuously absent. It shouldn't surprise any of us though that our friend Sharon... ever the hostess, ever the uniter, ever the organizer...has managed to reach across the boundaries of time and pull this off. And because Sharon wouldn't want it any other way we will celebrate. We will laugh. We will cheer when we hear her name. And even through the tears, there will be joy.
It's difficult for me not to carry into this event the regret that I didn't find the same motivation to attend this run/walk a year ago when Sharon was still with us. And there again is one of the lessons loss teaches us. Don't wait.
But I have learned, Sharon, and that is why I have moved mountains to leave my family for this whirlwind weekend trip that is sure to be filled with unforgettable memories. I have learned and I promise to relish the opportunity to laugh and reminisce and talk into the wee hours of the night with these lovely and amazing old friends. I will be fully present to this moment and leave all of the worries of home behind me.
So many of my days are dedicated to being a mom and a wife and, of course, no matter where I go or what I do those roles are always with me. I treasure those roles. But this weekend, I am going to wear my friend-hat loud and proud.
Hold down the fort, Superdad.
This weekend is just for the girls.