Amber | Portraits & Pirates

"Whoa". 

That's what most people say when we tell them we've been best friends since first grade. The only people we can't beat out are the people who have been friends since infancy--- but let's be real, there's not a whole ton of life for me to remember before Amber. All those memories are pretty fuzzy. 

Our friendship has survived a lot of fun, muck, and boys. We've dated the same boy. We've cried over the same boy. We've hurt each other over boys. We've cheered each other on through all our weird phases, hobbies, and life choices. We've probably rolled our eyes at each other through all our weird phases, hobbies, and life choices too. 

I dared her to make out with a car once. And she did. She dared me to take my swimsuit top off in her backyard once while she closed her eyes. And I did. And I felt so guilty for doing it afterward. We were really bending boundaries back then.

I started my period while hanging out with her and her sister at Six Flags but didn't have the guts to tell her until her Bachlorette Luncheon.

We did theatre together, and, as a result, both know a limited amount of tap dancing we can show off to unsuspecting friends. Went to the same orthodontist together. Cried at each others' weddings. There's probably a lot more I'm forgetting, but it would only take a short scroll through facebook to remind me of how great and deep our friendship is. 

One thing I appreciate about Amber is her heart. Lately, as in the past 5-8 years, we've really started figuring out how to be honest with each other. How to not just talk about the happy, fun, or boy things. How to share when we are hurt or mad. How to talk about our dreams and relationships and Jesus.

And, a few years ago, in the middle of all this honesty, I forgot her birthday. She texted me how hurt she was by my forgetting, and y'all, my heart fell to pieces. Amber, in my opinion, is amazing at celebrating birthdays and I am not. But I missed hers. And you don't just miss your best friend's birthday--- especially if she's so good at celebrating yours. But I'm forever grateful she told me how hurt she was, and even more--- how she felt like we were growing apart and that me forgetting her birthday was just the black icing that turns your teeth black on top of a burnt cake (that's how I view the situation in my head).

I'm forever grateful because it was a needed wake up call for me. A friendship like ours doesn't come around every day, or every few years, or every few decades. This is a lifetime friendship we didn't necessarily commit to, but have found ourselves apart of and you can't drift away from someone who knows you so well, cheers for you, and can call you out when you're being a poopy head. 

Anyway, we had a get together weekend recently and went antiquing in Wichita Falls--- and she let me snap a few pictures of her. Isn't she beautiful? She looks just like her mom, sister, and other sister. I'd know, cause we're best friends. 

I love her. 

Also, that random pirate wall. If I could have, I would have bought it. So weird, quirky, and great. 

Stacie Stine

Design Jamboree, Denton, Texas, United States