Monday, March 7, 2011


Here is Sukie wrapped in the gorgeous blanket that my bosom friend, Crystal, sent her from a world away. Crystal calls it The Tiffany. Having knit an afghan once for my mother, which I calculated based on my hourly rate as a P.A. would have cost me about 1400 dollars, I am highly appreciative of knitted gifts.

The Tiffany got me thinking of how blessed I have been with wonderful friendships with godly women who support me, inspire me, pray for me, love me. There's Janice, who saw me through tumultuous college years and has shared with me in the biggest sorrows and joys in both our lives. There is something about a friend of your youth and as my mother's beloved Miss Read says "No matter how long their partings, on meeting they fell together as sweetly as two halves of an apple." There's Crystal, who thinks nothing of packing up a family of seven and moving to Kuwait and still finding time to send care packages to me. She's preternaturally curious about life and theology and our mutual love of books and bonding over breastfeeding our baby daughters in the church nursery cemented a friendship that withstands thousands of miles of distance and many missed Skype calls. There is Cam, who is moving away from me in the next few months, taking with her the only person who has ever cleaned my toilets other than its owners and a friendship that is deep and solid enough to enable us to ask forgiveness of one another. Though she has thought through a range of people to take her place ("now the interesting thing about her, Saskia, is that she never had a cavity in her life until she got pregnant and then she had seven of them. You can't tell me there's not a connection there, Saskia."), but it is a futile enterprise. And then there's Carley, the unflappable mother of three who bears my burdens while I bear hers and who pours out her love for our family in ways ranging from Cheeseburger soup to insisting an additional three children for four hours at her house is nothing. And somehow I believe her.

There are other friends. There are the built-in, whole-other-can-of-worms-wonderful relationships I have with my mother, my father, my sister. But I am especially thankful for these women because they don't have to love me, by accident of birth or circumstance. But they do. It is no coincidence that each is a believer in Jesus Christ, indwelled by the Holy Spirit. He is the third party in each of these friendships, the One who makes them not just fun to be with, but people who stretch me and challenge me and make me a better wife, mother, friend.

I am grateful. I am thankful.


Whimsy-ma-blog said...

Wow, Saskia, I love your friends!

My sister-in-law was just asking me last weekend what helpful thing she could say to help a friend of hers who has lost a baby. I said, "If you really want to help, you should be exactly like my friend Saskia who I can call at any time and share whatever lunatic-like, tragic, un-Christain, or scandalously inappropriately funny thing I was feeling and she would never judge. In fact she would insist that my psychoses seemed perfectly normal and assure me that were she in my place, she would have done/said much worse. And it has helped me more than she could ever imagine. I will never be able to repay her for the help she's been in keeping my sanity."

susanswenton said...

You are truly blessed.

SDK said...

I think that's the nicest thing anyone's ever said to me. I had no idea my helpless fumbling was of any assistance; I just know how privileged I was to be a listening ear and to meet Jack. I also know your humor has been helping me navigate rocky terrain for over half my life (can you believe we met seventeen years ago?).
You know I love you.

SDK said...

Oh, and Janice?
I think scandalously inappropriate is to call your friend you who lost her baby and complain vociferously about how much you hate being pregnant with a perfectly healthy baby. And not think twice about doing it.
And then not judging is for the friend not to bat an eyelash. (And I am waiting for your call about how much you are hating being pregnant with your own perfectly healthy baby. Because that is how we do things.)

Whimsy-ma-blog said...

My ultrasound is on the 23rd at 9:45am. If all goes well and it's healthy, expect a call around 11:00 with at least a 25 minutes long continuous stream of verbal diarrhea detailing every minute discomfort I've had. And if not, well expect a call at 11:00 regardless. Your services will be required no matter what direction my life takes next.

And I feel fat and crabby.

And you know I love you too.

Whimsy-ma-blog said...

And in response to my blog (clearly I'm not the one to explain blog comment etiquette...) I'm fairly certain I partially squished the baby I was laughing so hard about painting the chest. Good times.

Carley (and Ed!) said...

I'm so glad I became a BSF Children's Leader - otherwise I'd still be that woman from church who doesn't let her kids say "poop." How far we've come! I love you!

SDK said...

How far we've come indeed, Carls. I just dreamed last night that our families bought a house together. We even had a master bedroom with a partition and it was within walking distance of Target.
Start looking in the sale ads.

Crystal said...

Sask, It is not fair to make me cry! I pray for you everyday and I still have conversations with you in my mind : ) Some would say I'm insane, I say I am looking forward to our conversations in Eternity!

I hope sweet Susannah is snuggly in the "Tiffany".
I can't wait to see you all this summer. Please clear your schedule we will be camping at Hoffmaster and you will be camping next to us, or at least Dean will with your two oldest ; )

Please come to Africa!! I'll take you on a Safari and take you to volunteer at an orphanage. If you can't make it to Mali, because you are a BUSY wife and mother, just know that I will continue our ongoing conversation and making plans for the book club in heaven!!!! You are indeed a Bosom friend and I am honored to be loved by you~~~~

hmell75 said...

This is beautiful, Saskia, and you are blessed indeed. :) So happy that you have so many wonderful women in your life - it's so important, especially when raising three amazing little girls to become strong, wonderful women!