Aug 22, 2008

Friendship - Not Always What You Expect

Today is Friday Show & Tell, hosted by Kelli at No Place Like Home. Go there to find a list of participants and many wonderful postings!

When I was growing up we lived in a big old house in an old neighborhood. One day when I was in 9th grade, I walked home from school passing a large brick house at the end of our block. A
tiny, wrinkled silver haired woman called out to me from an upstairs window, "Hey you, the girl with the golden hair! Come in and sit with me." I did so and it changed my life for one special year. Almost every day that school year I heard the familiar call and I was happy to spend an hour or so with my new friend. She made cookies in anticipation of my visits and we had many wonderful talks almost every day that school year. As the school year neared it's end my special friend started sending me home with gifts. One afternoon she asked me to bring my father back with a truck - she said she had a gift for me I couldn't carry home. So my father and I did as instructed. We were on our way home shortly afterward with an antique bedroom set - a four poster bed, a dresser, a desk, and a large mirror. It is the bedroom set my husband and I started our marriage with and I still have the dresser, desk, and mirror - the bed broke beyond repair within a few years - ok, you can stop laughing now!

Here is the mirror, hanging now in my art room.
Not long after the day I received the bedroom furniture my friend sent me home with a lamp, pictured below. As it turns out, it is a German Dresden lamp. I have not been able to find it listed anywhere with an exact year or value.

This is my sweet Dresden lamp.

Within weeks of the day I carried that precious gift home I approached my friend's house for my daily visit and was met by her nephew. My sweet friend had passed away while I was at school. I had never seen him before but he called me "the girl with the golden hair". It seems the wonderful hours spent with my friend were just as meaningful to her as they were to me. I remain convinced that my dear, lonely friend knew her life was nearly finished. I still feel honored that she chose me, an unfamiliar teenager, to share her last year with and to gift with treasured items of her marriage.

I guess the moral of the story here is, never discount a potential friendship not matter how ill paired you seem to be! You may find a cherished friend and incomparable memories.

35 comments:

~Becca~Bluebird Rose said...

Kathy, what a lovely story!! The treasures she sent home with you are precious, but even more so are the treasured memories you have of your special friend. I'm sure you brought much joy into her last year of life....
Thank you for sharing!
:)

Carrie said...

It was so lovely of a young girl to spend time with the lady. You sweetened her last year of life.

REAL ME said...

What a amazing life experience and a blessing.

ceekay said...

Precious story Kathy. Amazing too that you still have so many of the items she gave you.

Pink Slippers said...

What a beautiful story. I just love the details in the mirror too. What a blessed friendship. It is so 'story book sweet'.
Wendy

Anne Fannie said...

Kathy what a sweet story and very precious memories!
Love, Ann

GrumpyAngel said...

This is a beautiful post. I love the story you shared. You must be a really good-hearted person to spend time with a lonely old stranger when you were a teen-ager. Supposedly that's the age of selfishness. Obviously, you were not selfish at all. Thanks for the lesson in this beautiful story.

Jeanne said...

Kathy, that is the most beautiful story. Just imagine how much your friendship meant to her, as well as yourself. She will always be with you ven though she is gone.

Hugs, Jeanne

Hootin' Anni said...

Wow...just wow. What a fabulous remembering of you and the lady friend from your walk home from school.

Happy Show n Tell day

Diane@A Picture is Worth.... said...

Hi Mimi
that is such a sweet story and some very good advice about friendship. I can see where both of you enriched your lives because of each other. Thanks for posting.

Melissa Wertz said...

What wonderful treasures and true gifts. Wonderful memories. What a blessing you were to her and she to you. Thanks for sharing!

Chez Nous said...

How wonderful to have had someone like that in your life. I'm sure you meant just as much to her as she meant to you.

Would our world not be a better place if young people today just took the time to spend a few hours each week with an elderly member of their community? They would learn so much and give so much in return.

A Hint of Home said...

What a moving & loving story. You are so right--don't pass up a friendship when the occassion arises.

Angie said...

What a beautiful story, and what treasures you have to remember it by!

Charlotte said...

Beautiful memory and a beautiful lamp. The wallpaper in the lamp picture looks like the wallpaper I had in my doll room in California. I loved it. You wondered where I kept all my dolls. Most of them are in my doll room. I don't know what I will do with them if and when we move to a smaller house someday. Oh well, I won't worry about that now.

Carla said...

Good for you being brave enough to share you love with her in her last days. I'm sure you think of her each time you see your treasures. Thats what its all about isn't it? Thank you for that beautiful story!

diadsie said...

How sweet of you to share your time with an elderly person. Wish more people would do so as they do get lonely. I grew up with my grandmom and spent lots of time with her over the years. She lived to be almost 97!
The mirror and lamp are lovely.
Thanks for stopping by my blog.

Sweetie said...

Kathy, what a beautiful story. thanks so much for sharing. I can imagine the lady watching for you each day and smiling when she saw the "girl with the golden hair." The Dresden lamp is a wonderful keepsake. You have a lovely family. I am putting your blog in my favorites.
God bless!
Sweetie

Penless Thoughts said...

What a lovely story. How sweet of you, as a young girl, to be sensitive and caring enough to befriend her. I'm sure it blessed her greatly. A good reminder that we should all be willing to reach out to others.
Susan

Jewelgirl said...

Kathy, you are so right! As a younger
person I never thought I would have
friends my Mothers age. I do now and
some are older than my mother!
A wonderful story!
I am glad I didn't miss it! :)

Jean said...

Wonderful story! How fortunate you are to have pieces of her to add to your memories.

Tracy said...

Beautiful story and I adore the lamp!

MyJourneyBack said...

Oh my goodness. What a beautiful story. It sounds almost too fairy tale to be real.
But the lamp and the mirror are gorgeous.
What a sweet child you must have been to become such and important friend to an elderly person. Not many children would do that. And what a Blessing that you had the opportunity.
Can you imagine even considering something like that now days.
What an amazing story thanks so much for sharing. Oh btw thanks for coming by and visiting me too. I almost forgot thinking so much about your sweet story!
Blessings,
Sherry

TJ said...

That is a wonderful story! what a difference you must have made in her life. Imagine if she had called out to someone that just passed on. What an amazing friendship for both of you.

Donna said...

Oh Kathy, this brought tears to my eyes as I was reading it. What a heart-warming story. It's really cool that you have her gifts to go along with the wonderful memories. Thanks for sharing it.

BarbaraLee said...

How blessed you were to have someone like her at a great age.

Teeny Tiny cabin said...

I can't tell you how much I enjoyed and am moved by your story of your friendship with this dear lady.She must of sensed you would cherish her gifts--lovely as they are.
Once again, my day is made!
Thanks so much for the kind words left at the cabin!
Blessings to you!
Claudia O.

Linda said...

Kathy,
What a sweet, beautiful story. How kind of you to share your time with that lovely woman. I always loved to hear the stories of my Grammas, Aunts and Uncles. Do you remember some of the things that you talked about with your friend?

The Berry's Patch said...

What a wonderful story!

Kelli said...

Oh, that is a wonderful story of friendship, Kathy! I know you will treasure the memories and lovely gifts forever! Thank you for sharing such a sweet show and tell with us!
~Kelli

Cori G. said...

What a beautiful story and such sweet memories. It sounds like the two of you shared a very special friendship.
Your post brought tears to my eyes. Thank you.
Cori G.

Sabine said...

This just made my day! Thank you! (I wandered here through Pink Saturdays links.)

Susan Hickam said...

You made me actually cry! I totally agree with you about never discount a possible friendship - most of my best friends have been people that I didn't naturally hit it off with. I know you made a differnce in you friend's life and it is obvious she did in yours as well. Love the header on your blog. Great verse!! I see you love the Mitford series-so do I!

ivoryspring said...

Hi Kathy,

Lovely gift, from such a lovely friendship you have!!!

Blessings!

Reynie said...

I didn't get around to visit much on Friday for Show and Tell and just now getting to visit. I'm so glad I came by to read about your story. It brought tears to my eyes. I really enjoyed it! You were blessed to be able to share that time with the lady and her with you. Angels are among us everywhere--we just don't always know it!