Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My Friend

I miss my friend. I met her at a restaurant when my twins were only 2 and a half. She started talking to my parents. I wasn’t paying attention. I thought it was another person commenting on “the twins”. It turned out that she had boy girl twins also. They were 6 weeks apart in age from B and A. How perfect was that? Not to mention we got along great and so did our husbands.

So, for the next few years, we were inseparable. Outings to the park to recoup our sanity, trips to the zoo and the splash park, movies in the winter. Too many play dates at each other’s houses to even recall. It is this woman who I will always remember as an integral part in my survival of B and A’s toddler hood.

She was my go to friend when I just couldn’t take it any more. She understood the twin thing. She even had it a little harder with a third baby 13 months younger than her twins. Being that close in age, he fell right into the group with the older kids. We caused quite a scene wherever we went. A large group of 5 children almost all the same age will do that.

When B and A were almost 5, I had R. That was the first crack in our relationship. She did not want to be tied down again by another baby in our group. It was obvious and sometimes vocalized. I didn’t really blame her. Sometimes I couldn’t believe that I was starting over again also.

She became restless and tired of her daily routine. No longer satisfied with “just being at home” she looked to go back to work. That was the second crack. She was no longer home and I didn’t really want to hang all day with the au pair while the kids played. So, we started doing more with other friends where I could also socialize with their moms.

We are still friendly-don’t get me wrong. We occasionally will have dinner at each other’s houses and our kids are on some of the same sports teams. But, it’s just different.

We ran into each other this week at a restaurant near my house. She was on her lunch break from work and meeting a colleague. Dressed to the nines in a skirt and matching accessories, she met an attractive man wearing a suit. I walked up to her before he arrived to say hi.

I was having a tough day with the kids. I had showered, but my hair was still wet. I had no makeup on. I was wearing shorts, flip-flops and a t-shirt. There I was with my 3 children and also my 90-year-old grand parents (who are sometimes more work than the 3 kids). She looked at me like I was an alien that she hoped would leave before her lunch date arrived. It made me sad. We used to come here for lunch all the time with the kids. It was such a glaring example of how things were so different in each of our lives now.

I was in line behind her to order and she didn’t turn around once to acknowledge me, much less introduce me to her colleague. I’m not so sure I would have either. She didn’t come over to say goodbye. In between retrieving the food on the ground and running back and forth from the counter for our lunch, I couldn’t find her either.

I think I’m a reminder to her of what life used to be like and of what she’s missing at home. And she’s a reminder to me that I am so far away from having a career or from looking that presentable any time in the near future. We’ve each taken a different path. I’m sure at some point they’ll be headed back in the same direction. But for now, I just miss my friend.

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