Life: full of amazing, unforeseen circumstances. How you roll with the punches only reveals your strength.
True friends are like diamonds: bright, beautiful, valuable, and always in style." -Nicole Richie
I remember when I first heard the big news. I didn't want to believe it. My heart dropped. I was worried for you. What would happen? How would you get through this? Nothing we knew would ever be the same. Our world was about to change forever. I recalled the verse Isaiah 41:10, "Do not be afraid, for I am with you." I knew God was with you and would always be. I knew God needed me to be here for you, no matter what.
Turns out, you had this all in the bag. You handled everything with grace and dignity. You were strong even on your hardest days. You were overwhelmed with faith and you inspired me with your perseverance through the hardest times. I could not be more proud of who you became because of the cards you were dealt.
To Meaghan: I love you. I'm always here, no matter where. Hudson is so lucky to have you.
Here's what I learned from you and your sweet baby boy:
1. Contrary to popular belief, it is NOT the end of the world
Start making plans for the future. Pick out clothes, decorations, and toys. Help with all the madness and preparation. She would do the same for you. Plus, 9 p.m. runs to Toys-R-Us just to buy the baby some socks (because you do not know the gender yet) is always a good idea. You have to focus on the big picture. Life doesn't stop even when you want to.
2. No matter how much you want to freak out, remain calm
Getting unexpected news is never easy to hear. If needed, cry. Cry until you cannot anymore. Then, get up and be strong, she needs you. Be flexible (You want to come over to hang out? Right now? No, I'm not in the middle of ten thousand things, come on over). Be available (yes, even for her 3 a.m. insomnia calls just to see "what's up?") "Meaghan, why are you even awake right now?"
3. Radiate positivity. Always.
This is an emotional time. The LAST thing she needs is someone bringing her down. "No, honey, you're glowing!" "You do not look fat in that bikini!!" "You are rocking that baby bump!" "Oh, that's your the third day in a row you're eating a Sonic burger for lunch? You go girl!"
4. Be ready for all the times: happy, confusing, stressful, sad, (but mostly) exciting
Mixed emotions are so hard, but look for the silver lining. With your support, she will be strong.
"Who knew picking out the brand of diapers to buy was so stressful?"
5. This world is a scary place. You never want to be all alone, so don't be.
Like the song says, we, really do, all need someone to lean on. Just being there for someone goes a long way. "Meaghan what the heck are you doing in MY bed? How long have you been here?"
6. Lean on God. His plan is greater than we could ever imagine.
When you don't know where to go, or who to turn to, pray! Pray for the burdens you feel. Pray for the future. Pray for patience. Pray for the ability to not grow weary. Pray for a heart of compassion. Pray. Pray. Pray.
7. Something we never knew we needed.
Some of the best things in life are things we never knew we needed. Who knows where we would be without this sweet face?
"Hudson say Lib. Libby. L-- Come ON!" "CAT!" "Okay, that works too."
8. "Mother knows best"...is accurate, whether you believe it or not
Turns out, seventeen-year-olds don't know how to plan baby showers. Our moms have been there, done that. They want to be involved just as much as we do, so let them! Listen to their guidance. After all, they're professionals.
9. There will *almost always* be a "better way" of doing something...but, be a cheerleader, not a critic
This is something many people struggle with in general, but it is not your DNA, it is not your place to be a critic. Let her raise her own baby. You are there to be a friend, not a mentor. ****Unless she's about to name the baby something absolutely terrible -- for the love of that baby, don't let her name that kid something everyone hates.
10. At the end of the day, it's not what you have or what you know; rather, it is all about who you love and those who love you
Life has adapted, but for the better. We grew up, learned, and became stronger. All the while, we stayed friends every step of the way. We still have the same fun and most definitely, the same laughs.