Monday, May 7, 2012

My 3:00 a.m. friend

You know those people you can call at 3:00 a.m. because you're having a rough night and are in desperate need for the familiar voice of a friend. Well, if I'm having a night like that, I know I can scroll down to the "B's" in my contact list until I get to.... Bean.  Others call her Christina...or Chrissy...or Tina....but to me, she is Bean. The more I mention my friends in blogs, the more I realize how prone I am to giving nick names....

I always expect Bean not to answer so late or, if she does, I think it will be in a groggy, half-asleep voice, but this is not usually the case.  Most of the time, she picks right up with a prompt and alert, "Julie-pants!?"  This is her name for me...I'm not sure how that even started...
She is a Princess- and she almost didn't get the chance to live her life. Just the fact that she is here to pick-up my 3:00 a.m. phone call is nothing short of a miracle...

Bean is an abortion survivor. Rarely do we get the opportunity to put a face or a life to what was going to be "just another abortion statistic," but here she friend Bean, and I can't imagine life without her.

Bean and I in black and white
Bean and I are black and white....literally and figuratively...She's African-American and I'm just plain ole' Vanilla ;-) OH MY GOSH.... I just realized that together we are: Vanilla Bean!!! (The most un-boring type of Vanilla ice-cream out there!) Beyond our ethnicity or our ice-cream flavor, we are also black and white in the way we think...all or nothing kind of people...we like to have ANSWERS...something concrete....a cause, or a love to give ourselves fully to....needless to say, we are not fans of the undefinable gray matter in life. Unfortunately....most matters in life seem to be inexplicably gray :-/

Bean's a fighter...for what she believes in, and for the people she loves. I can't even count the times I have woken up to her on her hands and knees praying or crying out to God at any hour of the night.  We've had many adventures together all over the great state of Georgia and beyond.

I remember the first time I saw my little jumping Bean...lets just say the first impression was misleading.  I walked into the room where "Christina" sat, quiet and poised, in a chair with her straightened hair.... Little did I know, on the inside, she was an afro-wearing-fireball of a lady! :-) Don't let her small stature fool you...(even though it fooled the lady in the grocery store, who wouldn't give Bean a sample because you, "have to be accompanied by a parent if you are under the age of 13!")  This happened to us at a Publix when Bean was 28!!!  

I have a memory of one of the more difficult days of my life...and it was pouring down rain and I walked into Bean's apartment completely soaking wet and in despair.  I sat down on her floor and she just held me like a Mama would, or like a sister would (I don't have sisters, but I guess sisters do this?  If they don't, then they should). When I first met Bean she wasn't so much of a "hugger," but I've seen her grow in love and grace over the years and watched her precious heart open up.  She gives me hope.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
That's what I'm talkin' about!! If I could fro it out like that you know I would!
One time I used Bean's shampoo and when I got out of the shower and my hair was matted down to my head and not looking so hot....I realized that I guess the bottle actually meant it when it said, Shampoo, "for women of color..." not for women of no color, such as myself ;-) 
Thankful is not even the word to do justice to my feelings about God intervening that day in the abortion clinic- not just so that I could experience what it is to know her and to love her...but for Bean....that she has been given the chance to make laugh out sob fight learn trust, to have faith, and to love and be loved well...

Thank you God, for allowing Bean to have the chance to experience the struggle and victory that is- this life.                                                                                                 
Thank you Bean, for all that you are.....silly, passionate, loyal, hopeful, caring, child-like, beautiful you.

...And thanks for picking up the phone for me.
Love you friend.