I hope you have someone like Danielle.

July 17, 2008 at 12:25 am 17 comments

Last week we had the pleasure of hosting some house guests—my best friend Danielle and her husband Dave, from Erie, PA (my hometown).

I’ve known Danielle since first grade. She and I were friends in elementary school, and then her family moved across town in fourth grade, so we didn’t see each other for a few years. Where I grew up, there is one high school for the whole district, and all the middle school graduates get dumped into the vast sea to sink or swim together. That’s where Danielle and I reconnected.

We were in the same section of Chorus in 9th grade (incidentally, the class my dad taught). She remembered me before I remembered her, but once we re-met, we were pretty fast friends. We laughed a lot, passed notes, auditioned for musicals, ate Cheetos before play practices, etc.

In 11th grade, December of 1995, I became a Christian. Danielle was always “religious” in the sense that her family attended Lutheran church, like mine. But neither of us knew very much about the gospel or the Bible. After lots of conversations with her and God working in her heart, she became a Christian in March of 1996. That took our relationship to a whole different level.

We were pretty much inseparable during the last year and half of high school. We attended youth group at a Baptist church together (much to our parents’ chagrin) and started growing in our relationships with the Lord.

College came. I went to Penn State, three and a half hours from home, and Danielle went to a smaller school about an hour from home. That ended up not working out for her, and the next year she remained in Erie. That meant that I got to see her every time I came home from college, and we spent pretty much all the time we could together. We’d often get house-sitting gigs together or something like that to entertain ourselves.

She eventually became an employee at the church we started attending in high school, as a youth worker for lots of years and now the Director of Communications. Danielle is extremely gifted in all things graphic. If you need wedding invitations or a logo design, or really anything, she’s your girl.

Danielle was the first person I called (after my parents) to break the news about Felicity’s death. I didn’t get her on her cell, so I called her husband’s, and he answered. She was with him. I didn’t know how to get the words out, so I just blurted it out as soon as she got on the phone.

She in turn got on a plane and came here for five or so days, pouring herself into every imaginable aspect of planning a funeral for a baby daughter. She designed our programs, edited our photos, constructed photo displays for the general public at our service, made a scrapbook/guest book for people to sign, made sure I was getting enough rest, managed the crowds and phone calls coming in—pretty much made herself indispensable. That’s kind of what she does.

I loved having her here with me. We played games, where we laughed so hard we couldn’t breathe; we cooked dinner together, which is so much more fun when you have a partner; we bowled, something neither of us are good at but our husbands love; and we worked on Felicity’s book some more, mounting pictures from my pregnancy and clippings from church bulletins. This is a task that has paralyzed me all year. But as soon as I mentioned that I could use her help doing it, it was good as done. She’s amazing like that.

So thanks for listening to me brag on my friend. I hope you have a Danielle in your life. I also hope you’re being a Danielle to someone.

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Entry filed under: Life.

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17 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Nanette  |  July 17, 2008 at 6:26 am

    Molly, I am so glad you have a friend like Danielle. It is nice to have those friends to whom you can mention Felicity for the rest of your life and still feel perfectly comfortable. Five years after losing my Natalie, I still like to be able to speak of her with my friends. Praise the Lord for taking perfect care of you through your dear friend. It was good to hear you brag about her, because it is jus like bragging about God’s abundant help and grace.

    Reply
  • 2. Pam  |  July 17, 2008 at 6:51 am

    Molly,
    You made me cry this morning! I have to say that I mostly go at this job of mothering my 4-year old and 2-year old twins alone. My husband is amazing but I often wish I could have a “Danielle” in my life. I have peace about it because I think God is teaching me to trust Him alone but I often wish he could give me at least one person to lean on. We don’t even have a church family. We attend a church and have visited countless others looking for a Christ-centered place to raise our kids but so far, we have not found and English-speaking one in our city. We are praying…

    I have actually been reading Danielle’s blog for a few weeks now and have enjoyed it (especially seeing her lovely work!). She sounds like a wonderful friend and God’s gift just for you. Isn’t it wonderful when people we enjoy and love in our lives point us to the grace and wonder of God? I love hearing about how one person serves another and causes them to glorify and magnify our heavenly Father.

    Reply
  • 3. Courtney  |  July 17, 2008 at 8:27 am

    I can pretty much just say ‘ditto’ to Pam’s comment. I too am in tears as I read your tribute to your dear friend. I really hope you realize how amazingly blessed you are to have her. We homeschool our 4 & 7 year old, live in a very rural area, attend(not a memeber) a church comprised of about 20 very old people because it’s the only church within a half hour drive that isn’t Catholic or Lutheran. There aren’t kids, there aren’t young couples and life is very lonely. As hard as it is for me to not have anyone but my dear sweet amazing husband, I know that God is enough. My kids don’t yet know that though and I really feel for them. I want them to have friends. I went them to begin developing those “Danielle” relationships so they have someone to love and lean on forever.
    Praise God for your amazing friend. She is truly a gift. May you continue to love and bless one another to the glory of God.

    Reply
  • 4. CarolinaMama  |  July 17, 2008 at 8:33 am

    Thank heavens you do hae Danielle and you believe in Him. Thanks for sharing your story, Felicity.

    Reply
  • 5. citystreams  |  July 17, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Danielle sounds amazing. I’m so glad you have such a great friend. I hope I can be like Danielle for my friends, too.

    Reply
  • 6. Courtney  |  July 17, 2008 at 10:35 am

    I have two “Danielle’s” in my life. There names are Andrea and Steph.

    thanks for the tribute, Molly. It was really sweet.

    Reply
  • 7. Kelly @ Love Well  |  July 17, 2008 at 11:11 am

    Beautiful tribute, Molly. The friendship between you and Danielle sounds like the body of Christ at work.

    My Danielle actually goes to your church. We have been friends since the 4th grade, and through peaks and valleys, we’ve always been there for each other. She’s really more like my sister than my friend. We know each other intuitively.

    Reply
  • 8. Erin James  |  July 17, 2008 at 12:41 pm

    This brought tears to my eyes… not about having a Danielle, but the part about being a Danielle. Do I give of myself enough? Do my friends know that I will be there whenever they need me. Sure, I tell them, but do they know in there hearts they can count on me no matter the day, or hour?
    Thank you for the reminder, Molly. I thank God He gave you a friend in Danielle.

    Reply
  • 9. JenR  |  July 17, 2008 at 1:55 pm

    I am so glad that you have an “Amber” in your life, which is the name of my “Danielle”. We moved here over 3 years ago. Within 2 days, there was a knock at my door-it was Amber, my neighbor, bringing cookies. She saw my Anne of Green Gables DVD and said “I had hoped you were a kindred spirit”! We found out a week later that her and her husband are believers and have been inseperable since they moved 2 weeks ago.

    Amber and her husband took care of me during Andy’s first deployment, and for that alone I owe a huge debt of gratitude. They helped me get through those 6 months in a way that no one else could. They had me over for dinner every night b/c I wasnt eating on my own (I am SO bad about that!), and they have been such dear friends during the good times and hard times.

    Reply
  • 10. jahber  |  July 17, 2008 at 2:57 pm

    Thanks for sharing about Danielle! If I may brag for a moment, my Danielle is my sister. Although we didn’t get along when we were younger, we sort of found each other as adults. She and I are very close, and we’ve walked side by side through the loss of our mom, after my sister’s miscarriage, and while she was on bedrest at my house as we did everything in our power to keep her third precious baby safe in her womb (four months to go!). Now that she’s at her own home, we’ll talk on the cell phone as I’m driving to pick her up to hang out, and we’ll chat until the moment I knock on her door–thank goodness for unilimited mobile-to-mobile! If you don’t have a Danielle, I hope God will provide one–maybe even in unexpected places like your family ;).

    Reply
  • 11. Mozi Esme's Mommy  |  July 17, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    Sounds like an incredible friend. Thanks for the challenge to be one ourselves!

    Reply
  • 12. jennapants  |  July 17, 2008 at 6:20 pm

    yeah. you know i love your danielle. i love reading her comments and checking out her blog now and then. she’s clearly a fantabulous person. i am so glad you and danielle have each other. and i love hearing people talk about their friends. this was a fun post to read!

    Reply
  • 13. Ter  |  July 17, 2008 at 9:31 pm

    I would love a Danielle. Where do I order one?

    Reply
  • 14. Elizabeth  |  July 18, 2008 at 10:12 am

    I had a best friend from high school that I’ve lost touch with. I’ve been thinking about her a lot lately. Just like your Danielle, she is irreplaceable.

    Reply
  • 15. kait  |  July 21, 2008 at 9:13 am

    Friends like that are hard to find. I think my Danielle must be my mom. Lutheran rebels unite!

    Reply
  • 16. deb t  |  July 21, 2008 at 10:28 am

    Thanks, Molly! You say it so well. My “kindred spirit” is your neighbor Nancy’s sister. Her name is Sonja. She has been more than a friend to me all these years, through thick and thin. Through laughter and tears. They truly are a gift from the Lord. PS(My daughter is also, becoming a dear friend. She blesses me often)

    Reply
  • 17. Ming-Wai Ng  |  July 22, 2008 at 8:42 am

    This was an amazing. Thank you.

    I have 2 Danielle’s their names are Lauren and Mrs. George.

    I want to be a Danielle.

    Reply

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