We had some special visitors this last weekend. It is a long story, but I will give you the cheat sheet. Way back in 2000 and 2001 I was doing a lot of fabric swapping on the Internet. A bunch of us realized that we all lived about an hour-ish from Albany, NY in different directions and decided to meet up for a shop hop. This is where I met my dear friend Jen Gray who continues to be one of my best friends. There was another Jenn in the group at that time and we became good friends.
The other Jenn lived several hours away and our worlds couldn’t have been further apart. She lived in an old farmhouse in 160 acres, I could barely manage Maddie with corporate job in NYC. Despite the odds we became fast friends and spent a lot of time together. I really cared for her kids. We sewed, we drank, we laughed. They helped us move. They came for Thanksgiving, then Easter. And then they didn’t. I never knew why she stopped being friends with us. She never said. She just didn’t show up for Maddie’s birthday party one year. Her daughter Kelly called one time and tried to re-connect us, and Jenn wouldn’t take the phone. That was about 11 years ago.
Fast forward to 2016. Her daughter Kelly is all grown up now. I remember a smart and headstrong teenager who had the usual battles with her mom but who I always understood. Honestly I usually thought Kelly was right but never said it. She has parted ways with her mom and tried to get in touch with me on Facebook 3 years ago, but I didn’t see the message until late this summer. Kelly and her family visited this weekend and that sassy (in a good way) teenager is now a beautiful, hard-working, impressive 29 year old wife, mother, woman. She has experienced more sadness in her 29 years than many experience in a lifetime, but to me, it seems that it is fueling her to be a great mom, work for her family, and get her degree. Nothing will stop this kid.
It was great to see Kelly and meet her husband Dave and three adorable and well-behaved children. I am looking forward to seeing them again soon. We have a visit planned for December. Life takes lots of crazy twists and turns, and I am so happy that Kelly made the effort to reach out!