If you had told me five years ago that I would one day consider Darcie Joy Gudger as one of my best friends I would have said that you were nuts. From a position of "outside looking in", to me she seemed a little weird, and downright annoying. Not that there was really anything wrong with her, mind you, she was just very different from me. She told EVERYBODY EVERYTHING that was going on in her life, she had kind of a funky sense of humor and would push a joke to the very limits, and she was HYPER. When she would worship she would practically dance around and jump the pews. (OK, so that’s a slight exaggeration.) Unlike me, who did not want anyone to know that I was going through tough stuff, not very witty (although I did have a similar sense of humor in that I found the same things funny as she).And I was pretty reserved and afraid of someone looking at me when I worshipped.
Then, a few years ago, I learned that her best friend was going to be moving to Ecuador and felt God pushing me to reach out to her. When I was a young adult, my best friend for life moved from Texas to Missouri and I was so lonely. I knew I could relate to her feelings of loss with Molly moving so far away, so I invited her to have dinner with me sometime. Little did I know that God was about to bless my socks off with what has become most recently one of the most important and precious relationships I have ever had.
Darcie is almost indescribable. There are so many layers to her personality it is hard to put into words all the things that make her wonderful. Things that I thought were "annoying" when I did not know her heart are the same things that endear me to her now.
Darcie is transparent. She is not afraid to let people see who she really is. It takes bravery of heroic measures to have the kind of transparency she has in letting people see her joys and her pains, her triumphs and her struggles. I admire her so much for that, even in seeing that even this has caused her pain as people fail to understand it and miss-judge her often – as I did.
Her talents are never-ending. She is an amazing writer, a beautiful singer, a wonderful mommy and wife, and one of the best friends anyone could ever hope for. I just recently learned she has some skills with a miter-saw, too. I’m definitely going to be calling on her for my home-improvement projects! She was even painting Kyle’s nursery with her right arm practically in traction so she had to use her left hand to wield the roller. That’s talent!
I love her sense of humor – she keeps me laughing. In fact, my best friend who had moved so far away so many years ago had basically the same kind of humor. We laughed the hardest at any kind of potty or bathroom humor, and Darcie just kills me with some of the stuff she uses for her euphemisms both in her writing and in conversations.
I love her generous heart. She is the kind of person that would give you anything she had if she thought you would receive a blessing from it.
I love her naiveté most of all I think. I’ll never forget being at a baby shower for a mutual friend before Kyle came into her life and seeing her pick up a bulb syringe and asking "what do you use this for?" It was especially funny because at the time I think she already knew Kyle was coming soon and that she herself would be a mom and using all those very same items she was asking questions about.
Growing up kind of sheltered from main-stream culture (not listening to secular music, not seeing movies because they were deemed "bad", etc.) has given her an almost childlike way of looking at everything. I can’t wait to "expose" her to some of the stuff I grew up with that she didn’t. Like some of my favorite 80’s movies that make me laugh till I cry and from which I quote so many lines. Just the other night I took over a copy of the musical/comedy "Best Little Whorehouse in Texas" and she picked it up and asked if it was a porno flick. It was pretty funny. One year I had a karaoke birthday party for Kendall and she came but did not know any of the music (which was kind of a shame ‘cause this girl can SING!). It turned out kind of funny, though because I was sure she would at least know "Mr. Sandman" so I had her come up and try with me and another friend as a trio. Since she was not familiar with the lyrics, she would just randomly lean into the mic and go "BOM!". It was a riot! (I still have the DVD.) I plan on making her a CD of some fun music to listen to and take her to a karaoke club sometime soon.
I think her naiveté is what has given her such a child-like faith as well. Her faith is bigger than anything I’ve ever seen. Yes, she gets discouraged. And yes, I have even heard her ponder that maybe God had turned his back on her. Yet, even in the darkness her faith stays true. She may clearly recognize when God is silent, but she never is. She continues to give Him glory for all that comes her way. Even in rough times, she never stops looking for the blessings that are hidden along the way. I admire this quality in her so much.
I am so blessed that God brought her into my life. She is a true treasure and I think we will always be friends. Thank you Darcie, for being such a rich addition to the tapestry that is my life. Happy Birthday, dear friend.