I met Jess a few years ago through our blogs and social media. We talked about YA supernatural romance and thrillers (unashamed), our families, God, life, boys, and His grace. Basically everything you talk to a friend about, and all through email or that little messenger window on Facebook. Over the years our friendship grew. She moved out of her home and got married to her sweetheart, I wrote and poured my heart into my work. We started a magazine together and talked dynamics and sorted through problems and ideas. She told me first that she was going to have a baby, I shouted and laughed and was on cloud nine and savored this delicious secret and we totally agreed that I was auntie Jo. I graduated highschool, started dating my sweetheart and we discussed talked long into the night about marriage and relationships and this strange, confusing, and wonderful world of getting to share your heart with a person in a totally new way. We laughed together, and cried together and wished we could wrap the other person in our arms and not just in our words.
She's been there for me when I was at my lowest. Has listened and talked me through heartbreak and sorrow. She's shared my joy even when her own life was hard and made me cry. We've prayed for each other, and used up all our data Skyping the evenings away. We made too many inside jokes to count. She's the only person on earth I let call me Jo, the only person who's ever seen my Miranda face. Jess has dirt on me that would make the whole world fall over laughing. Also, I may have a picture of her with a mustache that she sent me for my birthday present. "I will sing you HAPPY BIRTHDAY as a little Mexican man wearing a sombrero and mustache!" She said. She delivered.
There's one major part in our story that people have a hard time believing.
We freely call each other best friends
Without having met in person before.
Shocking, right? People may throw what they want at this phenomenon of social media but the truth remains: if not for blogs, and Pinterest, and Etsy and Facebook, I would have never met my best friend. Boy, just that thought brings tears to my eyes.
Jess and I finally got to call ourselves OFFICIAL best friends in October and November of last year. I got up at 5 AM CT and landed in the beautiful and HOT land of Phoenix Arizona a few hours later. I wasn't nervous somehow. Despite the fact that I was meeting someone most would call a stranger, and her hubby, and baby in the middle of a state I'd never been to with a dying cell phone and about $50 to my name. But when I walked into the airport and saw this precious family waiting at the end, my eyes filled with tears and it was like hugging a dear sister.
So yeah, internet friends are amazing. And this lady just fills my heart with so much joy and love and has taught me so much about living and being part of the Kingdom of God and I love her.
Oh, my heart. I love her.
To celebrate Mothers day next week, I thought I'd share these sweet portraits we did together with the world. I plan on taking many pictures more of that little chub and his mom (and dad, if we can ever get him to pause his work!)
Counting down the days.
xoxo Johanna Grace