My first JitterbugI know I’ve talked about my birthday FAR too much than anybody should on the internet, but it’s been celebrated in bits and pieces with various people – much like Christmas was for me with divorced parents and heaps of extended family.

As I stated last year, I like to spend my birthday with The Girls, because even though I’ve made many NEW friends in the sixteen years since landing in this city, the day still symbolizes the beginning of Steel Magnolias-type friendships in my life.

Previous to attending college I was the only girl amongst a pack of guy friends, finding that girlfriends were high maintenance and catty. But once I was dropped into the middle of a girls’ dorm for two years, I found a smattering of kindred spirits.

I’ve always thought it was Providence that brought me to Seattle, since I insisted to my parents that I move here, applied to only one college in the area, and had no logical reason for any of this to happen. I even dropped out of college eventually. But it was through my college experience that I met my lifelong friends, and subsequently began a journey of growing up in my Christian faith.

Over the years those first girlfriends have taught me how to be faithful through disagreements, compassionate through struggle, patient through wandering, and joyful through tears. And as I make new friends, I’ve learned that the pieces of me that I shared with only a few actually multiply like fishes and loaves as I offer them to others, and I become full in the bounty of friendship.

The other night I went out with many of The Girls (click on the photo above). Not all could make it, but I know they were there in spirit. Jenny wrote about it here, and for the record, mom – I was NOT drunk.

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