During this season of gratefulness and thanksgiving, I felt that it was only right that I took some time to recognize some of the people that have really made an impact on me. For this blog entry, I am going to focus on three people that have been on my heart lately. I really want to continue making entries dedicated to “my people” and while they will be sporadic, this is something that I want to do to honor the people that God placed in my life during the very season that they needed to be there.
First, I want to start with my freshman college roommate, Courtney. We first met in 2007 and I honestly did not know how or if we were going to get along. So, before I proceed with whether we got along or not (lol), I must give a little backstory of this particular time in my life. When I was in high school, I was known as the quiet and shy girl that was smart and was always somewhere with a book. I wasn’t popular and I just quietly made my way through high school. I don’t know what happened but when I got to college, I became a social butterfly and really spread my wings. I guess that it was a time that I could re-brand myself because nobody knew me, and I could create the image of myself that I wanted to be. There were no ties to my hometown and that made this time critical to my self-awareness. I wanted to start with that backstory because Courtney was the observant, quiet, spiritual, and intelligent person that I truly needed to have in my life being away from home for the first time.
Courtney and I became friends and when I reflect on our time together, we really had some great laughs and we had some wonderful times at the basketball games and other places around campus. What I didn’t understand about Courtney that I understand now is the fact that she was wise and used her discernment quite a bit. The times that she would correct me when I called her “shy” by saying, “I am not shy, I’m just observant.” I didn’t realize what she meant until years later but I am happy to say that I now know what she meant.
Courtney taught me that you do not have to be the loudest in the room to get attention and that there is beauty in observance, a functioning relationship with Christ, and discernment. She didn’t say many words at all but the ones that she said, she made them count. The way that she took the time to get to know me (and others) to know what our favorite candy, color, and items were (and still are) unmatched to this day. When I was younger, I never understood why she was so quiet but now, I understand. Courtney prioritized peace over chaos, quietness over loudness, Christ over the world, and kindness over rudeness. Courtney’s friendship was one of the genuine ones that I had when I went away to college and I am thankful that God placed her in my life when He did.
The next set of people that I would like to start out with are the Mitchell’s! Vess and Latonda. Now these two…they are my people!
I’ve got to break up the time periods that we were first introduced to each other because I met Vess quite a few years before I got the privilege to meet his beautiful wife and now my sister, Latonda.
Starting out, I met Vess back in 2007 when they put us in a remedial math class together (lol). As funny as it sounds, we definitely did not need to be in that class and we took every moment we had to let the teacher know that we didn’t need to be in there. Vess was a cool and confident dude that just had such a pleasant disposition about himself and it was like we had been friends for our entire lives. We have had some great times together from playing spades, Uno, hitting the dance floor, basketball games, bowling, and the list goes on and on. Actually, Vess was the first friend that birthed my nickname, B.Webb that stuck to me like glue. Anyhow, unbeknownst to me, my future husband and Vess were also friends and it just made it sweeter to have all of us connected to each other.
The first time that I met Latonda was at my own wedding and she hugged me so tight and it was also like we had known each other for years. We laughed and talked for a little bit and then we hit the dance floor for a little bit. I knew when I first met her that she was a jewel and a true Queen. One of the instances that will forever be burnt into my heart and mind was in April 2022 when my husband and I went to visit Vess and Latonda. We hadn’t seen them in person for over five years and it was long overdue. I had been going through some personal issues (quite serious ones) and I remember my bro Vess asking, “So, how have y’all been?” and I skirted around that question by saying that we had been good and then asked how they had been doing. Bro wasn’t having that so he worked back around and asked how I had been doing, and that’s when my levy broke. I crumbled because for the first time, in a long time, someone genuinely cared about how both my husband and I were doing. My brother, sister, and husband all rallied around me and gave me the biggest and best group hug and let me know that no matter what I was going through, God loved me and they did too. I will never forget that day and anytime that I talk about it, I tear up because that is what friendship is about.
It’s not about “turning up in the club” all the time and calling every single day to gossip. It’s about those times when life gets hard and unbearable and you can call up your people for a good prayer, joke, outing, and you know that they are going to be there for you. I know that my people will never go back and repeat anything that I may share with them about my personal battles that I am overcoming. I know that I can go weeks, months, and sometimes years without seeing them and we can pick up like it was yesterday. I thank God for my people. I thank God for my Courtney’s, and my Mitchells’ because those are good people that you can always count on. During this season of thanks, I want to thank them for being a part of my life and for loving me just as I am.