Monday, February 4, 2008

From A Friend... that Touch that warms...

This is a paper that was turned in by my daughters best friend. It touched my heart so much that I wanted to share it with you.Just enjoy as my daughter and I did. Darrel

My best friend Shannon and her family mean the world to me. Shannon and I met when we were in college for culinary arts in 2003. We were both on our own for the first time and both more than 3 hours from our parents. Shannon and I lived together through a student housing program and after a couple weeks Shannon and I went on our first road trip together. That was the beginning of our lasting friendship.
Shannon lives in Iowa and doesn't drive so I told her I would bring her to her family's to visit. At first her parents hated me. They could not understand why Shannon liked me, or would have brought me home. As her parents got to know me and I them, they started to understand why Shannon liked me so much. Shannon's parents are wonderful people that I fell in love with and they became a surrogate family to me. Shannon's grandma and grandpa treat me like I'm another one of the grandkids, and I'm like another daughter to Shannon's parents.
Shannon and I both left college at the same time, she went back to Iowa and I went back to Minnesota. Shannon and I hardly ever get to see each other anymore but when we do it is just like old times and we just talk a lot more to make up for the months we missed. Shannon tells me about the things that happen in her life and I tell her about mine. Shannon and I talk occasionally on the phone but as we lead busy lives it's not as often as we would like. When Shannon and I talk she can tell if something is wrong, without me telling her anything. Shannon is always willing to listen to me, and give advice when she feels it's needed.
When Shannon's mom died Shannon called me at 6am to tell me. I hadn't slept yet so I slept for 4 hours and left for Iowa to be there for her. Shannon's family is so strong and they did very well. But it was hard for everyone to lose Sheila because she was such a wonderful lady. But Sheila had suffered many, many years with different illnesses and disabilities. But the beauty of Sheila is she never let it stop her from doing a single thing. She was a strong wonderful woman that led a wonderful life and blessed many people with knowing her.
Shannon's dad is also a wonderful person. When I call to talk to Shannon I always talk to him too. He understands my mind in a way that no one else I have found does. When what I say sounds abnormal or crazy to me he understands it, and a lot of times has been in the same situations. Sometimes I call just to talk to him because he helps me not feel crazy.
I was blessed the day I met Shannon and she will be my best friend for the rest of my life. Even if we only see each other twice a year and only talk on the phone once a month, Shannon and her family will always mean the world to me. I would do anything for her and I know she would do the same for me.

Things I know about the power of a touch

Strange when I sit and think about things that have helped me through out my life. There have been people and places and sounds and experiences that have all changed my life in some way. Some of them for the good and some just for the learning of it all.
The people of course being those that have entered my life, some for just a season and caused my world to change. Their advice or just lending an ear often rook me away from a scarey place. Places like beautiful British Columbia Canada, a place that held beauty and learning that I may never see again. Experiences of course almost always teach us something. If they don't then as the saying goes... "History will repeat itself" until you get it right.
Sounds? How could a sound change your life? I was walking in the woods one day and I heard a branch snap loudly in front of me. A black bear was crossing my path, uninterested in me, thank goodness. It wasn't the bear that changed anything for me. It was the sound of that branch snapping. I had written in a previous blog that I wanted to be an Oceanographer since I think I could walk. But life took a change and off to Canada and away from the ocean we went. But it was there that in hearing that "sound", I knew what I wanted to do with my life. I went back to my cabin, found a pencil and paper and began to write. From that sound, I wrote a 300 page novel.
These are things that touch our lives almost daily. Their touch brings to us opprtunities or new walks in our lives. Journeys that will take us around the world and back again. but thinking about the most wonderful touch, I think that would be this. You are sitting at the table drinking coffee. The love of your life is up doing things. Your mind is searching for answers and you can't seem to find one. You are a million miles away from anything. Suddenly, she comes to you and brushes her hand across your cheek. The warmth of her heart is transfered from her hand to your heart. For a moment, nothing else in this world matters but that touch. You reach up and take her hand in yours and all worries seem to disappear. A simple touch to a loved ones hand, a gentle carress that says all you can not. A caring hand on a friends shoulder. These are the touches that truly can change ones life. They can stop the saddest of sads and make you forget the thoughts that wer bothering you.
Sometimes, for no reason at all, reaching out to touch a friends hand or cheek or rub their back for a moment can mean the difference between staying... and going. That is some of what I know about the power of a touch.

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