Tuesday, April 14, 2009

My Indian Princess

I used to tell people that I wouldn't like myself if I wasn't me. Take a second. Think through that statement. Got it? Okay. Basically, I thought that one loud, obnoxious, attention-starved drama queen was more than the world could handle anyway, so why would I ever want to compete to be, well, me?

Then I met Jackie.

And my whole world changed.

I met Jackie when she was dressed as Babe the Blue Ox. You know, as in Paul Bunyan's friend. I was Juno, so we both had pillows in our shirts while rollerskating at Young Life's Halloween party. That night we were really loud together. We dove all over the skating rink on our padded bellies. We took ridiculous pictures together.

And the rest, my friends, is history.

My friendship with Jackie is unlike any other in my life. I have never met someone so like myself, yet so different, but whom I loved so much so quickly...does that make sense? God brought Jackie into my life at exactly the right moment, and He has used her to round out a missing piece of my heart. This girl has truly impacted me in huge ways.

So in case you couldn't figure it out, it's Jackie's birthday TODAY. And I have never been more excited to write a Top 10 Post, so without further ado:

Top 10 Reasons Why I Love Jackie

1. I love Jackie for the ways in which we are alike. We both love Beyonce. We are both huge birthday divas. We both love to cuddle...with each other. We both value words. We are both ridiculous and loud and competitive and memorable and obnoxious. I love that she can relate to me on so many different levels, both deep and superficial.

2. I love Jackie even more for the ways in which we are different. Jackie and I don't see eye to eye on everything. We have different hopes and goals and different ways of going about pursuing our dreams, but I get to learn from Jackie. She is fierce and aggressively follows God's will for her life, and it is beautiful to see her grow and learn.

3. Jackie has incredible passion. When I asked her what she wanted to do with her life, she smiled and said, "I'm going to Africa to hold babies." And she is. Her passion for God, her love for others, her desire to get to Africa, and her loyalty to her friends all paint a telling portrait of what an incredible woman my best friend is.

4. Maybe because of her crazy passion, Jackie is strong. She's gone through hard things and come out better for it. She is flawed and imperfect, but she is the first person to tell you that -- she doesn't let her past affect her future, and I respect that more than I can say.

5. I love how much Jackie loves to laugh. Her sense of humor is one of the best things about her. She is goofy and does not care about what people think of her; she just wants to have fun. She is light-hearted, but deep...and did I mention that she is hilarious? Because she is. Jackie can make me laugh at any situation, at her, and at myself. I love that about her.

6. She spends a nearly obsessive amount of time on YouTube. Why is this on the list, you ask? Because, thanks to Jackie, we have these classics which just never get old. Ever. In fact, most of the time, they only get better when you watch them 17 million times. Dog Lover is the original, of course, but Kittens is sneaking up on it. Nicole and Miranda are pretty cool, too. See what I mean about the ridiculous sense of humor? In her own words, "I AM DYING!!!"

7. As much as it infuriates me, Jackie's awkwardness has a distinct charm to it. "Oh, heeeey...." and "NOPE!" never had any true meaning until this friendship blossomed...what?

8. Jackie is painfully, obnoxiously creative. We have effing craft nights, okay? It's sickening what Jackie [and Allison and Jessie, for that matter] can do. Photography, painting, random little crafty things -- she just knows how to make things beautiful. I don't, unfortunately. I try to learn [and by learn, I mean copy], but to no avail. Beyond just the general artistry, though, Jackie is creative in the way that she thinks. She thinks of great things for us to do [stars on the beach, anyone?] and even better ways to prank people. The mailbox dioramas and quarters glued to the mall floor kill me. If I had a drop or two of her genius, I could be an award-winning novelist by now...alas, I am stuck with creative nonfiction. Sorry.

9. Jackie supports her friends in a very unique way. She has a still confidence, which can almost be unnerving in its intesity. I want to be a writer, and Jackie has just accepted that from day one. She called me once when we were still in the very early stages of friendship, and emphatically talked about what kind of books I should NOT write [consequently, our conversation sparked this]. It was never a question of if I would write, but when. She reads my blog faithfully, something that means more to me than I can say; also, it was one of the reasons I was so excited to write this post. She stops into the Writing Center frequently, for no apparent reason other than to say hi. While trying to figure out what was going on with my summer, Jackie just shook her head and goes, "Here's my question: Why aren't you going to Brazil?" She says what is on her mind and she encourages her friends to be who God created them to be. Her nurturing support helps everyone close to her to be more comfortable with who they are meant to be.

10. She refuses to make a normal face for pictures...

Now, for a while this bugged me...all I want is a couple of cute pictures of us so that I can prove to people that I am, in fact, friends with one of the coolest girls on the planet. I realized, though, that Jackie is exactly who she is. In the same way that she encourages and fosters individuality amongst others, she is creative and original and distinctly her. She is beautiful, she knows it, and there is no need to glam it up for every single camera, because guess what? She's Jackie. And that means something. Besides, she loves doing things that piss me off...she gets some sort of sick pleasure out of annoying me. Yet another reason to make STUPID FACES.

Just kidding, sweetums. ;-)

Basically, I love Jackie a lot. God has used her in my life to teach me so many different things, things about myself, about the world around me, about friendship, about strength, about Him, and about love. Jackie makes me think differently and see the beauty in everyday. Happy Birthday, Jackie. You are one of my favorites.


E.E.King said...

HA! hahahahaha....
those YouTube videos were just too much.....
I'm glad you've found a great friend! :)

Not Furrow said...

Why AREN'T you going to Brazil?? That was well played on her part. But she seems like a very.......unique.....and logical person, lol.