When we think of Valentine’s Day and Hallmark moments we generally think of our spouse or partner, maybe if you have them you think of tender times with your kids or grandkids. It isn’t usually your brother who conjures that tender moment, yet one of mine did when he sent me a Valentine. It wasn’t just any old greeting card he picked up but one with a sentiment that pulled at my heart strings that he clearly picked out for me. . It struck me as so true of our relationship, adult siblings. It was a Hallmark moment and found a tender spot in my heart and made me a wee bit emotional. I have written before how lucky I am to have the wonderful guys that they are as brothers, and they continue to show in lots of little unexpected ways.
If you are a brother or a sister, take some time to call your sibling, drop them an email, comment on their blog or Facebook page, and maybe even send them something via snail mail. I promise it will brighten their day in ways you can’t imagine.
Now that Christmas has come and gone there is no question what was the greatest gift for me. It was the gift of friendship.
We have our Montana family friends. The friends who welcomed RangerSir and I into their home and treated us just like family. Though they have lived in Montana almost their entire lives they get what it is to move and live far away from friends and family. They have taken us in and treat us like family and include us in holiday activities, birthdays and graduations. We have attended funerals and met their extended family. They are who we call in an crisis and we hopefully provide support when they need it as well.
My lifetime friends now live far away. The amazing part of this friendship is though we don’t get together often when we talk it is just like we saw each other just a few days ago. When we get together we can chat for hours or sit in silence either works and both are OK. My lifetime friends know me better than I know myself some times and provide the moment of clarity when I need it most. We have been through lots together, some of life changing, but most of it just plain fun. A connection like that has last years, no matter how long the distance, no matter the changes in our lives we are their one another and their friendship makes us whole.
The like a sister friend who lived with me years ago and 20 years later is still like a younger sister to me. We worry about her and cheer her every success. Just like I imagine I would if I had a sister.
I have a large collection of social friends as well. Some are co-workers and former co-workers. Others are family and old neighbors. Folks who I exchange cards with during the holidays, catching up with them and all that has gone on this past year. Some we don’t hear from but once a year but we look them up when we get in their neighborhood.
They are part of what makes my life so rich and I am so thankful for their friendship.
Yesterday I got a phone call in the middle of the day from my brother, because he had received a box of cookies. He called because he was thrilled because he got the gift of a box of cookies from his sister, me. He talked how anyone can make chocolate chip cookies, but a box of Christmas cookies from me was a like a treasure chest. The cookies were special cookies from recipes that not everyone makes. He told me that each one was a different jewel. He told me how special he felt when he received that box I sent to him.
My brother and I were close as small children, but life has taken us on so many different trails and different destinations. We no longer live geographically close and I see him only every few years. In spite of that all his call made my day. I may have given him a box of cookies, but his phone call to me was the best gift he could have given me. It reminded me that the gift of time and love is priceless. We need to make sure we recognize those gifts when they are given and embrace them.