I've been a mom of teenage girls long enough to know that they don't need any help magnifying a small problem into a catastrophic event. Just a conversation between two 15 year olds can fuel the smallest of fires. But...every now and then...there are things that happen in a teenager's life that require a little introspection and some serious attention. This was one of those things.
Megan and I pondered and prayed all day yesterday, together and separately...while she babysat and while I went to lunch with a dear friend (who helped me ponder out loud.) She decided that she needed to step away from her friendship and make some changes. But she didn't want to do that without telling her friend exactly why she was leaving. I watched her walk into that house yesterday afternoon focused and concerned for her friend's feelings, and then walk out confident that she had done what she needed to do, but devastated by the loss of a friend. I know what that loss feels like. We talked about how it would creep in at night when things were quiet, and how it would sometimes come in floods when she least expected it, and how it would make her doubt ever leaving the friendship in the first place. But that the courage she exercised yesterday would be a turning point in her life. It will mark the point in her life when she realized she has a choice in every relationship. That relationships require work from both parties and that you can't base one on potential or obligation. And mostly that she's capable of hard things.
I looked at her this morning after knowing the agonizing decisions she made yesterday, and she looks different to me. Not so much a little girl anymore, but more like a trustworthy, compassionate, competent young woman. I'm so grateful for the little life lessons that help them (and me) catch glimpses of themselves like that.
Thank you SO much to all of my friends who sent love and texts and bloggy support and prayers from afar. I'm telling you, they carried me through the day and made up the difference when I was out of advice and ideas.