Vendors, Tattoos and Lifetime Connections

It’s interesting how people come into your life.  If you think about it, most of the people who have influence on our day-to-day existence enter our world through completely random circumstance.

It’s even more interesting how someone randomly comes into your life and because of something totally obscure becomes one of your “people.”

My friend Mel fits both of those bills.

I met Mel almost five years ago.  Shortly after starting my job, we were introduced as she was my advertising rep.

I inherited the firm she worked for, I liked their work.

Mel and I hit it off from the get-go. We have the same sensibilities, both of us are driven and enjoy the creative process.

Over the years Mel and I worked together to shepherd some great work.  Like many other creative types, our “shepherding” sometimes included impassioned discussions of what was best for the project.

Mel and I pushed each other, we pushed each other hard and sometimes we had to come back and regroup after creative “discussions,” but we always came back together.

Mel and I spoke daily and met at least once a week.  Our relationship became much more than vendor/client…. we became friends.

Over the years, Mel and I became trusted confidants.

When she asked me to lunch I knew something was up.  When she showed up at lunch with her boss, I knew exactly what was up.

Mel had resigned her position and would be leaving the agency.  I was happy for Mel, I was bummed out for me.

Her departure was more than two years ago.  I still use the agency for all my work and the rep who replaced Mel is awesome, nothing changed there.

The personal relationship I had with Mel didn’t change either.  While we didn’t see each other as often, we stayed in contact and would “chat” through social media from time to time.

Our lives went in different directions, but Mel was one of my people and in my heart we remained close.

The week of my 50th Birthday, she was unable to attend my party, but showed up for a surprise lunch.

When she met a guy, we met for lunch so that I could hear the details.  When she told me was THE guy, I was thrilled.

When the property sold, she reached out to make sure I was OK.  When my job began to intensify, she sent me words of encouragement.  I did the same for her.

Mel and I have a connection.

Today we met again, this time for a Bon Voyage lunch.  Mel is moving to be with her guy and I am moving to begin the next stage of my life.

We talked, we laughed and then we cried.

After we had eaten our lunch, I made the random comment that we had been through a lot together, the next thing you know we are both looking out the window with tears filling our eyes.

I then reminded Mel what had brought us together from the moment we met.  I reminded her, it was the tattoo.

It’s weird how things connect you to someone for life.  For Mel and I, it was a tattoo.

The very first day Mel and I met, it was shortly after my mom had died.  Sneaking through bracelets, I could see the ink of Mel’s wrist tattoo.

I said to her, Philippians 4:13.  Mel smiled and we said it together “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

In that very moment, I knew Mel and I were together for life, as Philippians 4:13 was the key verse from my mom’s funeral just weeks before and it was the simple inscription on Mel’s wrist.

My angel brought Mel into my life and I am forever grateful that she found a place in my heart through of all things, a tattoo.

Today, Mel and I bid each other farewell.  It’s not forever, although a greater distance will separate us we are forever connected by a friendship that was formed because of a tattoo.

God has a way of putting special miracles in your life when you need them most.  Mel, her tattoo and our friendship will always be one of those miracles for me.

Bon Voyage friend.

Life’s Playlist….. Danny Boy performed by @BYUVocalPoint


Life’s Playlist….. Danny Boy performed by BYU Vocal Point