Owlhaven asked in her Opinion Saturday post, “Who do you miss the most? And why?” I thought I could skip this one. I thought I could just keep reading and not respond, because clearly it’s not on-topic for my blog. But my thoughts keep coming back to the question and the answer that quickly follows it, and I need to answer this question echoing in the blogosphere.
Who do I miss? I miss my best friend. Every day. She lives 200 miles away and we haven’t seen each other in years, and I really miss being able to just stop by and have coffee and talk about our days.
We grew up together in Mississippi (of all places) and were pretty much inseparable during our high school years. We were best friends who dated best friends. We got ready for homecoming together, goofing around with her big brother or my little brother, and giggled when our dates both showed up at the door together. When the inevitable happened and one couple broke up, we stayed close and the boys had to figure out how to manage the awkwardness. We wrote songs together and belted them out for our friends on Saturday nights. We laughed together, we cried together.
We went to college 3 hours apart, she to an all-female school and me to an all-male school that had just begun admitting women. We got new boyfriends, made road trips, and kept talking as we changed, as I wish now I had with so many former friends. We reached milestones at eerily coincident times, and each time we fell out of touch, one of us would call, we’d catch up, and we’d laugh about it. We never held a grudge.
We have one of those great friendships that has endured through high school, college, graduate school, first jobs, second jobs, weddings, a baby, infertility, a divorce, remarriage, overwork, and careers that were wildly divergent. We stood up for each other in each other’s weddings, and she kept me company the night before mine by playing a song that she had written just for me, just for then, and it made me cry.
She introduced me to coffee houses and drinking wine late into the night. I kept her up-to-date on the latest advances in astrophysics, and kept her husband amused thereby. She took a nonprofit job in addition to her teaching; I went into government work. We both got really busy with husbands and family and work and dog rescue (another accidentally shared endeavour), and yet, every time one of us picked up the phone or sent a card saying, “It’s been so long,” we would find that it really hadn’t been very long after all, as we were still best friends.
We are still best friends. And thanks to the blogosphere, we now talk online every day or two, and keep up with each other through postings even more often than that. For that, I am grateful. It’s been wonderful having her back in my life, not that she really ever left, and now that we’re both expecting spring babies, I can’t wait to see what happens next!