Day 11 comes from my beautiful friend, Ashleigh. Ashleigh has been my friend since the ninth grade; at a time when I didn’t have many other friends she quickly became one of my best. In fact, you could say that Valentine’s Day is our friendship anniversary. (You can read about our first Galentines and why I fell in love with Valentines Day HERE.) She is so upbeat and hilarious and whole-hearted about all that she does. Ash is always down for whatever, and she makes even the every day delightful. She brings a happy light wherever she is. She is understanding. She is selfless. She is meek. She is incredibly smart and sees the world in such a unique, beautiful way. I can’t say all the greatness she is. So I’ll stop trying. Basically, she is the best person in the whole world, and I am forever happy that she is one of my people. I love what she says about friendship love.
“C.S. Lewis wrote a book called “The Four Loves,” which I am currently reading and it’s absolutely beautiful. In it, he talks about affection, friendship, Eros, and charity. And as I look back on all the times I’ve felt love or given love in my life, some of the most profound moments have been with friends.
My freshman year of college, I had a really hard year. I hadn’t made many friends, and while my roommates were awesome, they were never really at home. So for the most part, I sat alone in my apartment all year. I was lonely. It was not what I was expecting college to be like and I was disappointed. I remember one Sunday night, I was sitting alone on my couch, feeling pretty miserable about life and just desperately wishing I had a friend to talk to at that moment. And just as I was wishing for that, I got a call from one of my very best friends. And she didn’t call for any reason, just to talk. And it touched my heart in a way I’ll never forget. It’s a story that I tell often when I’m asked for examples of ways God has shown me His love, because though it was simple, it was deeply meaningful to me.
“[Friendship] is the instrument by which God reveals to each of us the beauties of others.” -C.S. Lewis The love of a friend shows itself in many different ways. Sharing in laughter, sharing in tears, a phone call, a surprise visit, a simple gift, a note, a conversation, giving needed advice and so much more. I have countless examples of times when friends reached out to me and showed me love, and also countless examples of when, by just being who they were, without any direct action towards me, they changed me. C.S. Lewis highlights something in his book about friendship that I have always thought it beautiful but was never able to fully articulate. He says that while the other loves come from basic human desires and needs, friendship doesn’t. We don’t need friendship to survive, and biologically, we don’t need it either. It’s something we choose to make a part of our lives. And the honest, pure love of a friend can change our lives and change our hearts. It has done that for mine.”