Encourage Our Girlfriends - 1010 Park Place
— Relationships —

Encourage Our Girlfriends

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While unpacking the last wave of boxes from my storage units, I found a letter from my friend, Marjorie. She printed it on thick card stock and brought it to my house when it was my turn to host our girlfriends’ group for dinner. At that point, Marjorie and I had been friends for 20 years.

Marjorie’s been there through the death of my first husband and my second. When she gave me this letter, 14 years ago, I’d been diagnosed with breast cancer the day before.

I met Marjorie through my friend, Rob, who’s been in my life since we took college geology together. Like the early Spanish explorers, Rob and my first husband and I embarked on dozens of expeditions to dig for Mayan treasures in the Yucatan jungles or to look for minerals and crystals in abandoned silver mines. Some were easy trips. Others… Let’s just say we survived by the hair of our chinny-chin-chins.

Marjorie’s letter reminded me how important it is to be there for the women in our lives.

“There are some things you learn best in calm, and some in storm.” Willa Cather

Brenda dear… into the storm you have been thrown, and how painful, wretched and unjust. But from this chapter of your long, bright, adventure-filled life will come new strength and resolve, and how fortunate for us that we will be here to share it with you. We will curse and bless with you, flail and pray with you, and watch joyfully as you begin to discover the gifts concealed by the storm. Then, in the calm, will you find peace.

“You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you cannot do.” Eleanor Roosevelt

Brenda dear… you have looked into the face of fear on many occasions. You have conquered and vanquished the evil and laughed at its retreat, and you will do so again. This may be the big one, the thing which you thought you could not do, but you can and you will, and we will watch with joy and admiration as you prevail victorious.

“When I look into the future, it’s so bright it burns my eyes.” Oprah Winfrey

Brenda dear… and when the dust has settled and you are restored anew, you’ll see sights and hear sounds and feel passion and dance to music that you never noticed before, loving this life and all its multitudinous beneficence.

“Hospitality is one form of worship.” Talmud

Brenda dear… who else among us would beckon her friends to celebrate life, friendship and communion in the midst of such news? Who else but you… and we share gladly because such hospitality is a form of worship.

The women in our lives are more precious than diamonds. Do you have a girlfriend who needs your support… who needs to hear from you?

Love, Brenda

13 Comments

  • Lorna Wight January 7, 2017 at 12:40 am

    Brenda you are blessed,thank you for sharing,what a beautiful letter.
    Lorna Australia

    • Brenda Coffee January 8, 2017 at 6:20 pm

      You’re right, Lorna. I’m blessed in more ways than I can count, and I have great friends. Thank you! Brenda

  • Esther Zimmer January 7, 2017 at 2:44 am

    Brenda, this is so precious but also such an important reminder to hold our girlfriends close. I have some phone calls to make today. Thanks for sharing, I believe you just sent a little ripple of love around the world. Essie xx

    • Brenda Coffee January 8, 2017 at 6:21 pm

      Thank you, sweet friend… One of the girlfriends I count on to love and support me. xoxox, Brenda

  • holly January 7, 2017 at 10:40 am

    Thank you for sharing this loving letter. I have two friends battling “the Big C” – one at the end of her battle with stage 3 breast cancer and she is winning BIG TIME. Another with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, just beginning her chemo journey. I will be reaching out to them while sharing your girlfriends words of love and strength. You have nudged the world to love…xx-hb

    • Brenda Coffee January 8, 2017 at 6:23 pm

      As someone who’s gone through breast cancer, I know what your friends are facing. They need little “nudges” of love and support. You don’t have to “do anything.” From time to time just let them know you’re thinking of them, and if you’re a woman of faith, that you have them in your prayers. xoxox, Brenda

  • Leisa Hammett January 7, 2017 at 5:52 pm

    Tears. So beautiful. So true. All of it about life. And from what I know, about you. So heart-felt lovely. Sharing. Thank you. Thank you for gracing my Saturday evening with a bounty of beautiful words in your blog. Love you even though most of our exchanges are through online.

    • Brenda Coffee January 8, 2017 at 6:26 pm

      And I feel the same way about you, Leisa. Online relationships between women–don’t know about men–have a way of cutting to the core and the essence of a person. We know if they have a good heart and if they’re genuine. I’m glad Marjorie’s letter spoke to you. It’s so very special to me. xoxox, Brenda

  • Philippa Decuir January 8, 2017 at 4:31 pm

    Brenda, thank you for sharing such an inspirational and powerful personal story!
    It’s another confirmation to what I’m in need of and fortunate enough to have someone willing to be that special girlfriend?
    Thank you for adding value to so many of us!
    Love & Blessings!

    • Brenda Coffee January 8, 2017 at 6:27 pm

      You’re a treasure, Philippa, and an example of a woman who’s always reaching out to others to lift them up in any way you can. I’m proud and fortunate to have gotten to know you. Love, Brenda

  • Diane January 10, 2017 at 9:07 am

    It truly is those friends in our lives who keep us moving forward through darkest challenges. God bless them!

    • 1010ParkPlace January 10, 2017 at 9:46 am

      Amen! What would we do without them? I have the best group of friends, especially women, who’ve lifted me up several times. I can only hope I’m there for them in return. Thanks, Diane.

  • Laura Dennis January 10, 2017 at 10:26 am

    Love this especially the Willa Cather and Talmud quotes. Precious friends should never be taken for granted.

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