Well, once again it is the birthday of a friend, my best friend as a matter of fact! Actually her birthday was yesterday, but we were so busy with 18th birthday festivities that I didn't have time to blog at all! So here's a quick birthday recap: Emily, Rachel (Shel's next door neighbor), Miki (another best friend), Rachelle and me went to the Denver Firefighter Museum around 11:30 or 12:00. Rachelle didn't know where we were going and so it was a fun surprise for her!
The museum was pretty neat actually; it had antique firetrucks and displays with old firefighter outfits and signs everywhere describing how firefighter equipment worked, the history of different styles of firetrucks, and other minutiae of the like. The museum also had self-directed hands-on activities for kids that our group of teenagers participated in as well! We got to step up into the firetruck and we put on some mock firefighter equipment and slid down the pole. It was really fun! We also raided the tiny gift shop and Rachelle and I both purchased a Denver Fire hoodie for a mere $25 each! Score!
After the museum we headed over to Civic Center Park for a picnic lunch (it was still early enough in the day in to evade the creepy park hoodlums). One of the funniest parts of the day was our somewhat frightening encounter with an aggressive squirrel at the park. This little squirrel would crouch down in the grass and creep a little closer and peek up to reevaluate his prey. Then when he was about two feet away from the blanket he started circling us as if he was honing in for the attack. It was just a little creepy!
We headed home at about 1:45, but Rachelle and I turned the wrong way on Colfax and drove about 45 minutes in the wrong direction before we realized our mistake, but no matter--we had a fun hour and a half talk anyway! We watched Annapolis after we got home and then Rachelle and I went to the Gap to look for new jeans. We found out that Rachelle's birthday plans for the evening fell through and I couldn't allow Rachelle to spend the night of her 18th birthday alone, so as an end to the birthday celebrations Rachelle and I got Mark and Ben (Shel's boyfriend) to go play foursquare with us at the local elementary school. We played on the playground equipment for a bit and then hung out at my house afterward. Overall, I think Rachelle's 18th birthday was a big success!
Rachelle and I had a rocky start to our relationship in freshman year. Our orchestra teacher Leah Rolfson introduced us and swore we would be best friends, but that's definitely not how it began. She thought me to be snotty and I thought she was mean and standoffish. A year and a half later we were in the same biology class and ended up being lab partners. We were both in the musical pit together and we roomed together when the music department went to New York City for Spring Break. This was the time when the ice was finally broken and we allowed ourselves to become friends, letting our guards down in order to learn more about the other. The rest is basically history, but I feel the need to add I've never had a friend like Rachelle. We both have strong personalities and sometimes it's hard to avoid clashing, but I feel we complement each other well.
I can tell Rachelle anything. We talk about school, friends, boys, church, clothes, cars, jobs, beliefs, politics, worries, excitements, sorrows, family, each other, and everything in between. We are very different in many ways, but something I appreciate and love about this friendship is that despite our sometimes significant differences, the most important thing for both of us is our God and His Son. We both believe Christ to be our Savior and Redeemer and while our religious beliefs are not identical, we both believe in Jesus Christ and in His saving Atonement. I don't always feel required to defend my choices or my lifestyle because we live in very similar ways.
Rachelle is undeniably loyal. She will defend you to anyone about anything because she knows you and trusts you, not allowing what others say to affect her opinion of you. I appreciate her loyalty and I strive to have that kind of devotion to those I love. Rachelle is stubborn, but she also allows those opinions of those she loves influence and affect her choices. She trusts her best friends, relying on their words and advice, regardless of whether she wants to hear it or not.
Sometimes I marvel at our friendship, wondering how we could withstand the obstacles in each other we've had to face. Then I realize that that is what love is: having the ability and willingness to look past faults and differences and embrace their person. (That may sound cheesy and hippee-ish, but it's the only way I could define my realization). I'm willing to work through our problems because my friendship with her is worth it to me. I believe our relationship to be strong enough so that I don't have to worry about moving away for school. I don't worry about how moving away to school will affect our friendship because I'm not worried that we won't be friends. I think there's always that friend or two from childhood who you will stay friends with forever. That's Rachelle and me.
So, happy birthday Rachelle and know that I'll love you forever--you're my best friend!