I have many loves of my life: my husband, my children, my family, coffee, my pillow, that feeling of pulling skin off of a sunburn.
And my friends. Those women who hold me up when I’m drowning in an ocean of kid issues. The women who encourage me when I’m scared to try something new. The ones who laugh with me about the absolute ridiculousness that sometimes results from having a female body. The ones who cry with me when I’m being hard on myself and say things like, “I totally do that too.”
My husband does these things for me. But, sometimes, it’s just different when the wise advice or the sympathy or the compliments come from a beloved friend.
I have the friends whom I see most days. We greet each other in our ragged worn-out running clothes, sleep-crusted eyes, and tales of insomnia and too much wine. We celebrate small victories as our children grow and learn. We bemoan the occasional annoyance of living with the male species. We question the world, the future, our ability to parent. We yell at each other to run up that effing hill faster than the day before.
I have those women who trip in and out of my life. You know the ones. You love them, they crack you up, and it’s always the most fun when you’re together. It’s just that maybe they live a little far away or the timing is never right and you don’t get to see them as much as you’d like. Every time you leave each other, you hug and you say, “Not so long this time okay?” But then life walks in and shakes shit up and they are gone again.
I have the friends whom I’ve lost touch with. The ones whom my heart still splinters into jagged pieces over when I think of them. We text each other “Happy Birthday!” smiley face, heart emoji, birthday cake. But you know that the something is gone. I wonder what happened. They hurt, those friends.
I have an online posse. The fiercest, bravest, funniest bitches on the planet. We were drawn together inexplicably. We are making shit happen. We truly care for one another.
And then I have the ones who are not here right now. They live in different states, are raising their own dirt-caked offspring, have jobs, lives, mortgages, their own coffee addictions. These women are my lifeline of sorts. An invisible thread weaves between us through all of the stutters and leaps and belly-flops of our lives.
Our ties are stronger than time or distance or months without talking. These are the sisters of my heart. They would pack their bags and be here tomorrow if all the things around me collapsed. They are the ones whom I’ve known for a lifetime. Each heartbreak of theirs is recorded as closely as mine. Each accomplishment is my pride. Each loss is my gut-punch. Each baby is my own. We miss each other, but we also know that, after our kids are grown and gone and our lives become less about others and more about us, we will circle back around again.
I imagine us old and wrinkly, laughing until we are crossing our legs so that we don’t pee our polyester pants. We will lament the passage of time but maybe not care as much as we do right now. We will drink wine and complain a little about our grumpy old husbands. We will be the chin-hair police for one another. We will order too much food and pat our old-lady bellies. I hope we’ll throw on bikinis and jump in a the hot tub filled with college guys and tell them stories about how we were once young and wild and smooth-skinned.
Yes. We will find each other again someday. When our boobs are hanging down to our belly buttons and our grandchildren are asking for money and our lives are filled with thousands of stories. We will find each other, and it will be as if no time passed at all.