It won’t surprise any of the people closest to me to hear how much I STILL miss my best friend/sister from the 1970’s through the end of that century.
My confession today though, is just how much. I try not to think about her, or talk about her, but every now and then in our professional worlds, she and I still cross paths, and it all floods back. So many years ago now, but our friendship (our sisterhood) was so easy, so equal. I always felt as important to her as she was to me.
Though she and I had off and on problems, all friendships do, the wonderful thing we had for so long was daily contact…someone to check in with, or be checked on by. I have never found that again.
I know it was partly our age and that stage of life way back then. Our living proximity (including together for a while), and all our common problems acted like friendship-glue, especially ex-husbands, money, new loves, single mom-ing-an-only-child, etc.). These things simply insisted on, and required daily updates.
I couldn’t tell you now what happened, or why, or even my part in it, but the “sisterhood” ended…in my memory now, rather abruptly.
I’ve never come close to replacing that connection.
I have made a few gentle gestures towards her over the years, and her response has always been gracious and kind, but also brief and singular. And my biggest secret is just how often I imagine grand gestures, followed by a grand reunion, much more congruent for our early years as friends and sisters. I play out these scenes in my head a couple times a year….or any time I drive to my city’s downtown, because I pass within just a half block of her house.
This last couple of Pandemic Years, I am contemplating my life, my mortality.
And on top of that ongoing threat, I have had several non-Covid related deaths close to me. I know I am not alone in any of that. None of the “normal” life-losses simply screeched to a halt just because of this stupid virus. They just kept on happening.
But it’s created a whopper of an existential crisis for many, and a profound sense of panic. Better hurry up!!
There are so many things I just can’t put off, or wait around for, any longer. Things I must act on NOW, if I’m ever going to.
I have to decide about selling my house.
I have to get that Dream Camper.
I have to tell, really tell, my people how lucky I have been to have had you in my life.
And, I decided, finally, I absolutely have to reach out to my old best friend/sister.
So in the throes of that emotion, I drove down toward the street that passes her house. As I got close, I pulled over into a parking lot, and sat for 10 minutes, thinking, getting grounded, psyching myself up.
It was Grand Gesture time. Dramatic I know, but hey, contemplating your remaining days is dramatic. I rehearsed my speech, making sure I was loving and hopefully, unconditional.
And knowing it was an extreme long shot that she was even be home, I drove to her house…..
This is what I found.
I have no idea what this means, where she is or if she’s even alive, but hard Lesson Learned….again.
Procrastination is a risky f-ing game!