Wednesday, November 19, 2008
Good friends make such a difference in our lives. I've been blessed with many good friends throughout my life. Joan was my best friend from first grade, all the way through high school. We shared just about everything together for twelve years - all of the silly things, fun things, semi-tragic things, secret things, wonderful things that children and teens share. After high school, she went away to college and I went to work. We remain friends to this day, although in recent years it has become the occasional letter and a few pictures, a much less personal sort of thing.
In my twenties there were two very good friends, Nancy and Eileen, with whom I became very close. Interestingly enough, they were not friends with one another. They lived in very different worlds, and I was privileged to share both. I am very grateful to have had both experiences. Eileen was to become maid of honor in my wedding a few years later. And yes, I am still close friends with both, but long distance. One is in Arizona and one in Hawaii.
Early in my marriage I met Pat. She was the best friend among many during the years when we were raising our children. Mutual support with other mothers of small children can mean so much as we struggle with the myriad of problems and questions we have as we learn how to deal with these little people who are so dependent on us. Sadly, I am no longer in touch with Pat She moved far away and has chosen to cut off communication with old friends, following a family tragedy.
Two years after my husband's death, when we moved to New Jersey, it was like moving into another world and another life. The first real friend I made here was Wyetta. She has remained my closest friend for the past thirty-one years. I am constantly amazed at how much we have in common, despite our vastly different backgrounds. I miss having her nearby. She has been in hospitals or convalescent homes for two years now. I visit as often as I am able. I took this picture a couple of days ago.
Some years ago - I'm not sure exactly how many - Lisa came to work in the same office with me. We liked one another, and found that we could work together very easily. We became good friends, and remained so after my retirement, despite our age difference. Lisa is the same age as my children. Our relationship is somewhere between best friend and mother-daughter. I call her my "other daughter". We now live on the same street, and she looks out for me, worrying over me if my car is gone from the driveway too long or if I forget to turn out the outside light in the morning. She calls me every day, and I look forward to her chats. (And she keeps me up on the gossip from the old office.) We enjoy nature walks together, and she asks me to join her on lots of little expeditions. Every so often I manage to do something stupid, like locking myself out of the house, or locking my car keys in the trunk when I'm far from home. (Yes, it's true. I've done that.) But I can always call Lisa to come to the rescue.
Last night she came over and put up a new curtain rod for me. It's frustrating not even to be able to get up on a little step stool to do something like that, but she hung the curtain for me. I have no idea what it would be like for me if I did not have a friend like Lisa now. No - not "like Lisa". Just Lisa. She's one in a million.
And when she got up on that step stool, she said, "No pictures!" Oh well.