chronic illness · Friendship Friday · jesus · Uncategorized

Friendship Friday: with a twist

Happy Friday! Sorry for missing you here on Wednesday – someday you’ll here about the roller coaster I’ve been riding this week. But in the mean time, I want you to meet one of my favorite people: Jenna!

Normally on Friendship Friday, my friends answer 4 questions to give you an inside look at our friendship and all of it’s quirks. This week, I’d rather introduce you to little J myself. Our friendship is so much different than most, and our relationship is one that definitely can’t be summed up in 4 questions.

As you know, I have a disease called Complex Regional Pain Syndrome…. So does Jenna. Back in the winter of 2015, I was sent to the Cleveland Clinic Children’s Hospital for Rehabilitation to be admitted to the Pediatric Pain Management Program… So was Jenna. That’s right: we met in the hospital because we were both fighting a seemingly impossible battle against an ugly disease.

We spent only 3 weeks together in the hospital before I was discharged and sent back to Texas. She stayed in Cleveland another 6 weeks before heading home to Canada. We’ve only gotten closer since that day, through texting and social media. Jenna and I share life’s ups and downs together in a way that no one else understands.We’ve literally seen each other go from wheelchairs to running, and every milestone in between. Not a lot of people can say that – and there’s no one in this world I’d rather do the rehab life with than my J.

Here’s the biggest secret to this friendship: Jenna is 8 years younger than me. When we met, she was the age that I was when I got sick. The reason our little hearts are so bonded is because she is the image of Little Ally. Our lives are pretty parallel – from our pre-sick days as dancers, to our post-rehab days as advocates and passionate dreamers. Jenna is simply 8 years behind me on this life journey, and I’m so honored the Lord chose me to hold her hand through it all.

Jenna keeps me laughing. She keeps me thinking. She keeps me hoping. She’s a bundle of joy, wrapped with a ribbon of grace. Bonded by pain, but secure in Jesus. That’s our friendship in a nutshell.

I want the world to know that friends like J exist. Age is just a number, and this friendship is forever.

I want to share a J story real quick: The last time I saw J, I surprised her at the Clinic during my 6 week follow up. She had no idea I was in town. Together, we walked down the hospital hallway hand-in-hand…. Something we never thought would happen. Forever my favorite walk with my girl. 

A year and a half after meeting: J & I are both doing so well. The Little One amazes me every day with the things she accomplishes (homegirl plays badminton and jumps into swimming pools!!!!). I’m a full time college student (I was a dropout during my treatment). We love life, but more importantly- we love life together.

With all the love,

A & J

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