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The Ladies

January 25, 2009

Part of the reason this move hasn’t been so hard at all is because I’ve already become so accustomed to living hundreds of miles from my best friends. When your parents move across a state and a half, it kind of cuts down on your excuses to go “home” and catch up with everybody. Not only that, but we seem to be inching further and further away from each other as time goes by. Do you know how big this country is? It’s huge!

(me and Em, “Kenny Chesney Weekend,” 2007. Not the most recent photo, but one of my favorites.)

Em (she blogs but hardly ever updates, and I’m afraid linking to her is going to make her even more shy about the whole thing, so sorry… no link) is my best friend from life. I often say she’s more like a sister than a best friend. We’ve known each other since the first grade, when she told her mom she wanted “that Courtney girl” to come to her very first birthday sleepover. Only, it sounded more like “that Coh-tney guhl” because she couldn’t pronounce her Rs correctly, and when she learned how to pronounce them, they became overly exaggerated for some time, so the phrase morphed into “that Courrrrrrtney girrrrrl.” I still make fun of her for this because remembering it is so incredibly endearing. It’s amazing to think that we’ve known each other for most of our lives. We once started a girl band and put all of our friends on the “cover” of the “album” without asking if they were cool with it. She’s the reason I started writing songs. I’ve dated her ex boyfriends and she’s dated mine. We’ve seen inappropriate things happen to each other at the Saturday night show at the county fair (Tracy Lawrence’s entire band and crew? Anyone?). We’ve been known to fight about incredibly foolish things and laugh hysterically about nothing at all. She lives in WYOMING. Which, you know, is nice for her and all, but even when I was in Minnesota, it was so damn far away. Thank God for facebook and cell phones.

(for the record, i hate this picture. i cannot believe this is the most recent one i have.
Em, me, and BSG, Neal McCoy concert 2005)

Big Sky Girl (BSG for those of you in the know) is another one of those hometown hotties I’m blessed to call a BFF. We, too, have known each other for what feels like forever. Our dads both took that oath to serve and protect, and so even though she is a few years older than me, we hung out at least once a year at the annual Christmas party. The stories the two of us could tell about those Christmas parties are almost too ridiculous for mention. She used to pick me up for school early in the morning and we’d go to color guard, and on the way, she’d listen to my incessant freshman whining about that junior boy who just wasn’t treating me right. We lived the real small town life all summer long, driving down back roads to neighboring towns with the windows down and Sara Evans’ blasting on the stereo. This girl (obviously) still lives in Montana, so again, thank God for facebook and cell phones.

(Dee and me, hanging out in my back yard soaking up sun and talkin’ ’bout boys.)

Dee (formerly known as the Caterpillar because of one very endearing photo I have of the two of us) was, and still is, my saving grace. She and I have known each other since freshman year of college, and even though it took me quite a while to warm up to the idea of adding to the short list of people I call my best friends, I’m glad she broke through to me. She is a sincere, genuine, loving person who wants nothing more than to enjoy life and do as much as she can for the people around her. She is bursting at the seams with talent and ambition, and she’s not afraid to just get out there and make life work for her, not the other way around. It’s something I very much envy about her. The majority of our friendship has been spent in long periods of silence when we were both so busy we couldn’t manage to talk, even when we tried, and weekend road trips so full of laughter and honesty and even tears that the time apart never seems to matter in the end. I left this one in Minnesota. It’s lovely to think she’ll be so close when I get to go home to visit.

(Vo and me right before our last test of college, ever. There’s a reason we look so happy.)

Last but not least is a fairly recent addition to this list of wonderful ladies, Vo, and I can only hope our friendship continues to grow and blossom as my friendships with the aforementioned girls have. This is a girl who found her way into my life at one of my darker points. I’ll admit to leading a pretty charmed life, easier until this point than most, but when Vo and I really started to get to know each other was a time in my life when I think I felt more alone than I ever had. We had known each other for nearly two years, and yet it was at that point that we realized we clicked. We began spending all kinds of crazy time together, doing homework, walking up and down the streets of Moorhead, talking about God, school, current boyfriends and former boyfriends, the future and the present. There never was and likely never will be a dull moment when Vo is with you, and that is reason enough to say I love her more than any words could express.

And there you have it. Other wonderful ladies have come in and out of my life– girls who have changed my world for the better–but these are the girls who have been there for everything. For the important stuff. I’d venture to say that if and when I ever get married, these will be the four standing next to me in matching dresses.

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