How did I even meet her? To be honest I don’t remember, and I’m not sure it was anything extraordinary, like she dropped out of the sky during an event I attended or anything.
I just know that over a couple of years we’ve gotten closer, and even closer in the last 18 months. And I couldn’t be happier. There’s nothing more assuring than having a friend who you know ‘gets you’, and always has your back (even when she doesn’t agree with everything you do).
This girl? Stellar. I remember when I had a really difficult time believing something I thought had a bit of life in was really over. That Sunday, I rang her and I could barely speak, I was crying that bad. And she listened, not sure I made a lot of sense but she listened, and then she asked if she could pray with me (see my razz friend forming posh). And she prayed. And her prayer was simple, heartfelt, and I knew God listened. I just knew. And of course, I was wailing by the time she finished because she’d made me laugh earlier. She doesn’t know how much that call/prayer meant/means to me, and she probably never will, but I’m eternally grateful (and it is the reason you’re getting actual gifts for your birthday Missy, nothing says I couldn’t have given you a handmade card!! :)
A must–have quality for my friends (well not really but it helps… a lot) is that they should be able to cook. This one? Yes! Yes! Yes! And she cooks for me, even when she is fasting (never mind that she’d probably be cursing me the entire time she’s cooking o, and to my hearing. Sigh.) Her darling brother (wink) and I put in special requests for jollof rice on Sundays, and when the Spirit of the Lord is upon her, she complies. Otherwise, she’ll scold me into forgetting I wanted rice in the first place!
Thank you for giving me a home in Lagos babe, thank you for always making me laugh, thank you for driving like a
crazy gorgeous, black woman, and telling me things like, “you will come down from my car now if you don’t stop (whatever it is you want me to stop per time)”. Thank you for always being there. Always. I hate that I cannot be there for the birthday do today (which you’ve been talking about since January, S-M-H), but I know you will have a fabulous time, and if this gets read at the dinner, this is the point where everyone who came without a gift should either stand up and leave, or write you a cheque (not playing). *Insert stern face here*
As you turn the big 30 today baby, God bless you. I bless you today with everything I’ve got, everything that is in me, every bit of me beseeches the Lord to bless you. And give you peace. And make His face shine upon you. And bring you into your own Canaan, your own land flowing with milk and honey, overflowing with the bountifulness that you desire. May the heavens continually be open for you, and let God (even today), stand in battle against anything/anyone standing in your way. You will excel, you will stand high above your peers. People will look at you and see God, His glory will never depart from your habitation. Amen.
Thank you. For being you. I love you lots.
Happy birthday Francesca!