Friendship, Allan (the duck) and Cinderella

Last night, I had a lengthy and serious seriously hilarious conversation via text message about ducks. Yep, that's right. Ducks. One duck in particular. This weekend, I house-sat for my parents who live in the country. That means that house-sitting involves caring for their 2 geriatric dogs, 19 chickens + 1 rooster, 2 horses and 20 ducks. I recruited some friends for backup, and we enjoyed a relaxing weekend in the country between our morning and evening chores.

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Henceforth, you can call me Cinderella.

So about the duck. One of them was failing to thrive. We named him Allan. It was pretty sad. He kind of squeaked and got trampled by the other ducks every time. And he was balding. It was depressing.

Allan.

Allan.

There was a lot of singing of the Circle of Life. It moves us all...through despair and hope...through faith and love...'Til we find our place on the path unwinding... I fear that Allan's unwinding path is pretty short.

If we had to pick a theme for the weekend, it would definitely be Disney. Cinderelly and Simba would have felt right at home!

I don't know if I have a point today, but I have an idea. Because what hit me, as I read these friends' text messages about Allan (the duck) and laughed out loud, alone, in my kitchen, was a wave of gratefulness.

These people, who can make me laugh so hard about #duckdrama, are the same people who remind me that God is trustworthy. They are the same people who lend me their faith and borrow mine. We discuss the inner workings of the royal family and Seattle-Grace (Grey's Anatomy) as though we know them. And then we talk about the first time our hearts broke. And then we talk about shoes. And I somehow know God's presence in those moments in a way that I don't at other times.

I think maybe the sign of real friendship is the ability to have meaningful conversations about meaningless things. And maybe God shows up in those moments because He is getting a good laugh out of His girls. I think maybe He really enjoys us when we enjoy those He's given us. And He has, in this season, given me some really good friends.

They know me. And I know them. They have shown up on my doorstep with soup when I was sick. They have made me laugh about things that I didn't know I could laugh about. They have let me cry about things I'm embarrassed to be sad about. They have told me to cry about things I should have been sad about. They have laughed and cried and shared and joked. They have been in bad moods and let me be in my own bad moods.

They let me be myself, and they are themselves, which is perhaps the greatest gift of all--the making room for realness just by being real.

Friends do that.

They know us and let themselves be known.

They laugh with us. They laugh at us until we join in.

They listen to what we need to say even when they already know the story.

They aren't afraid to challenge us, to question us, to tell us we are being ridiculous.

They know when we're faking it. And they will play along. Until they call us out.

They get annoyed with us.

They say stupid things, and we get annoyed with them.

But ultimately we keep them, and they keep us.

Because we know too much. And because we can't imagine this crazy life without them, even if they are the reason it's crazy at times. Because we are the reason for their crazy too. And there is a kind of comical security in that.

So here's to the friends who know when to be sweet and when to be sarcastic. Who know when to show up and when to give space. Who stumble and fall right alongside us. Who sometimes trip us and who sometimes trip over us. Who help us back up or just lay there in the dust and laugh at the absurdity of it all. Who make the mundane a little more interesting. And who make the interesting a little less scary.

Cinderella may have had her mice and a fairy godmother. And that was pretty convenient. But I think I'll just keep my people.