… But different.
Yes, I know that things are “physically” different lately … especially as to my actual location these days. Lots of new things to discover, lots of new routines to learn. For instance, I’m still trying to figure out exactly what time I need to leave our place in order to catch the train to make it to work on time. (And notice I said “place” and not “home“!) Because if there’s one thing I’ve learned is that there *is* a difference when leaving 15 minutes earlier or later from the previous day.
Hubby and I realized around Christmas that this year would be his 20th high school reunion. Which meant that next year would be mine. While I know Hubby will most likely not go to his, I’m still on the fence as to whether or not I would want to go to mine. That is … if we even have one. Because, quite frankly … we never had a 15 year one (which most other graduating classes from my high school have had one). And also because finding people I graduated with on Facebook is much easier to do than I ever thought. Plus, going through social network websites like that afford you the opportunity to only contact those people that you genuinely want to catch up with.
I’ve been rather lucky. My first golden contact happened almost 10 years ago, when a good friend (let’s call her E) from high school contacted me through classmates-dot-com. From her, I managed to get in touch with yet another one of our good friends, G. And while we all live in different parts of the US, we have managed to keep in touch these past 10 years, seeing each other separately at various times. There has only been one opportunity for the three of us to gather together one time in all those years … but in true “girlfriend fashion,” it was a “slumber party!” And no, there were no “light-as-a-feather” seances or incidents of frozen of underpants. It was just simply good ole “sit-in-front-of-the-TV and eat chocolate” girlfriend fun.
Last Wednesday night, I received a phone call from G. She has been a rock for me these past few years; especially over the past two years. And even though we might not talk on the phone or email as often as we’d like, she had this knack for sending snail mail at the times I needed it most. Now, whether that was intentional … I’ll never know. But her words always managed to soothe me; remind me that she was there for me when I needed her, even if that wasn’t physically written in the letter.
In any case, G’s phone call that night was to deliver some news. And yes, it was that news; the news that she was pregnant. And not only was she pregnant, but she was more than 7 months along and due at the end of March. She didn’t tell me sooner, she told me in our conversation, because she knew that I was not in the best shape emotionally at the time she found out for herself.
I honestly could not be anything more than excited for G. Truth be told, I was waiting for the day that I would be the receiver of such news. It was only a matter of time, as G and her husband have now been married more than a few years. And, not to sound as if I’m just “going through the motions” here … I’m genuinely happy for G and her hubby.
What surprised me most during this phone conversation is that I had this incredible longing to see G pregnant. Why this particular high school friend and not any another … or not even my SIL during her recent pregnancies? I don’t know if I could explain it clear enough. But I will try my best …
Part of me thinks it’s because I can still recall how my friends and were back in high school. How innocent we looked. How our futures seemed so hazy and obscure; so distant from where we were at that time in our lives. Now that future is here, and we can’t seem to slow it down or stop it from moving forward. So by capturing an image this particular friend during her pregnancy … I relate it as a way for us to slow down the moment and enjoy the happiness of it all.
Something in the back of my mind seems to think the need to capture this moment is also related to the recent changes I’ve made in my life … one which doesn’t have me dwelling on my “failure” to have my own children. One that has me focusing on the best part of myself and repairing my overall health … versus focusing on what I would probably consider the worst bits of me. You know … the over-stressed, overly sensitive, “Why not me?” type of person.
In any case, I’m ecstatic for G and cannot wait to see pictures of her little one, due the end of March.
Last week, I also had the opportunity to spend time with another high school friend, K … the one who lives about a block and a half away from our place. I also got to meet her hubby and her beautiful (almost) 9 month old daughter. After seeing videos of K’s baby on her blog for months, I was finally able to hold that cutie-pie girl. And, oh my! She’s just as charming and sassy as she was on all those videos I’ve watched.
Oh, and did I mention that K’s hubby is a sous chef at a pretty fancy-schmancy restaurant? And that I got to sample some of his fantastic cooking that night? Yeah … It. Was. Simply. Delish!
After chatting online with K for months, talking to her face-to-face was incredible. It was like we picked up where we left off more than 15 years ago! That level of comfort, of humor … it was as if we both jumped off a wagon back in the midst of college to go our separate ways, only to catch the same wagon 15 years later without missing a beat.
The conversation flowed seamlessly that night. (I stayed waaay past my bedtime for a “work” night!) And the more K & I talked, the more we realized how much we’ve changed over the years. Not in personality … as we still blathered about in the same witty sarcastic dialogue as we did in HS. But rather we’ve changed in the way we’ve approached certain situations. And that our own personal experiences made us feel as if we were no longer “invincible” … that the paths our lives took, although very different, taught us pain and frustration and heartache.
But in the end, K & I both realized that despite what we’ve been through, we consider ourselves very truly lucky to be where we’re at today. Both of us are not quite “finished” with what we want to accomplish in our lives (K with her career and me with … well, I still don’t really know), but what we’ve been through and where we are today is nothing short of amazing.
After both these encounters last week, I realized that even though there has been many changes in my life over the years (whether personal or professional), deep down I know I’m the same person inside. I still have that silly, quirky personality, and while sometimes hidden, I know it’s somewhere in this mind and body. I just need to dig deep down to find myself again.
Wow. Long and babbling post. But as I know that both G and K (and not to forget E) read this blog, I wanted to let them know just how much their friendships mean to me. Really, girls … even though we don’t see or talk to each other much, I just wanted to let you know that you are all very special to me. And your friendships, especially because of my lack of any sort of sisterhood-bond, are something that I will treasure always.