Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Girlfriend Guide: Sunshine

Good morning!  Welcome to this week's edition of The Girlfriend Guide!  This week I
present to you my lovely friend, Sunshine.  Yes, her name really is Sunshine and
her personality speaks that name through and through!  We met in college while slaving
the days away to obtain our nursing degrees, forming study groups that turned into
giggle fests.  Our friendship grew over our shared love for all things family and nerd
related and I quickly learned that she was someone I could always depend on.  Sunshine
 is a mother of three and I have always looked up to the way she so graciously parents
her children, her never ending supply of patience and understanding toward her little
ones serving as great inspiration to me.  She works as an ER nurse and is passionate
about serving as a nurse educator and patient advocate.  She has an amazing energy
and I hope you enjoy reading her perspective on friendship. 
1.  What is your personal definition of friendship?
My definition of friendship can be summed up in a quote from Aristotle--What is a friend?
A single soul, dwelling in 2 bodies.  A true friend understands and accepts the good with
the bad. They are encouraging, loving, have similar interests, and delight in their
differences. Always respectful, always present.
2.  What qualities do you look for in a girlfriend?
I look for loyalty, personality, charisma, joy and strength in a girlfriend.  I need the
balance from the people around me. I look for someone who's personality can do that. I
tend to be more uptight, too cautious sometimes. I love having those close friendships
that can bring me back to enjoyment. I look for compatibility, similar interests,
differences that bring us together so things are never always the same.
3.  How do you balance spending time with friends and fostering relationships with work and family?
Family is most important to me. My personal philosophy is never bring it home with
you. Being a nurse means that we will never see a patient or their family at their best,
but since being a caregiver is my calling, I know and accept this. I work because it's what
I feel led to do, and because I have a family to support. I'm a mama by choice. Those
babies mean everything to me so when I see their faces, the stress, the hardships of the
day melt away, until there is nothing but family time. I know I need down time to myself
and make sure that happens every day, whether its reading a book in the bath, sitting
outside with lemonade or making jewelry. Keeping my soul alive makes me a better person
all around.
4.  What advice would you give other women about having healthy, happy friendships?
My advice to other women is DO NOT COMPETE! Life isn't a race, it doesn't matter who
has the best house, job, clothes. Love yourself, love God, love your life, happiness will
happen. Cherish what you have, because you are not guaranteed tomorrow. I learned
the hard way that having the clean house, clean clothes, orderliness can come at a
price. Remember what is important. Making the right choices isn't always the easiest thing
to do, most often, its the hardest, but oh!!!! The blessings that will happen!
 5.  How has having strong friendships enriched your life?
Having strong female friendships has given me strength. They have shown me God's love
by giving me true friends. Persons to talk about struggles, troubles, babies, husbands,
work, school. A place to vent, trade secrets, improve relationships. A place of safety,
and acceptance. No one can go through life alone, you need Him. But this isn't a perfect
world and sometimes you cant hear Him through the chaos. That's when you need
your friends--the lifeline of logic or a partner in crime.
6.  What is your favorite girlfriend memory we have shared?
So hard to pick a favorite memory! One of my favorites is the sleepover at your house,
sitting in the hammock, staying up all night, playing the signing video game. Sitting
around the table, telling our true feelings of the other, laughing until we almost peed.
Another favorite was calling you at 10pm just to talk, and talk and talk. LOL! I love the
way you hear what I'm saying even when I'm not saying anything.
Girlfriends like Sunshine:
Girlfriends like Sunshine are understanding and patient.  She is always just a phone call
away, willing to listen when I need a shoulder to cry on and always accepting of where I
am.  She is dependable and responsible but has a carefree spirit.  She is the kind of friend
you can always count on for a deep belly laugh, enjoying the simplest pleasures in life,
like waiting in line at the movie theater for hours to watch a movie about vampires or
hanging out at the bookstore collecting new finds.  She has given me invaluable advice when
it comes to motherhood, serving as one of my biggest mentors and inspiring me with the
way she constantly gives of herself to her children.  Every woman should have a friend
like this: a friend whom you feel like you can always be yourself around, a friend who
makes you feel comfortable and accepted.  I love you, Sunshine, oh so much!  I look
forward to many more nights cruising around in the mini van, blaring our favorite
tunes, enjoying life to the fullest.  Thank you for all that you give me just by being you!


Hilary@BabyMooHoo said...

i love this feature, it's so sweet.

Leslie said...

Thanks for your sweet comment on my blog!

What great friendship advice! It seems like a lot of girls have a hard time with keeping friends and your post would probably help them to break that. Best friends make life easier.

Ashley said...

I love this post! I have been wanting to post about my friends for a while now and haven't had the time to do it right. What a wonderful tribute!

KimBerly said...

Oh I want Sunshine to be my friend. She seems like an amazing person.