Wednesday, November 27, 2013

My Best Friend

That's my best friend Cris and me earlier this year taking a Pirate Duck Boat tour of Miami Beach, because that's the kind of thing we do. We also go to the opera, to shows, to concerts, for dim sum, we're in book club together, we try new foods because they're there, we go to the movies, we go on food tours, we buy wines and try them, we're co-captains of a fantasy football team, we host a Blog together. We do lots of stuff.

We're also there for each other for bad stuff. Other than listen to her when she needs to talk I don't know what or if I've done anything for her, but I do know what she's done for me. She sat with my dying father and Alzheimer-ridden mother while David and I made funeral arrangements for my dad a few hours before he died.  She helped us clean out my parents' apartment when my mother was no longer able to live by herself and had to be put in an assisted living facility. She helped me deal with David's hospitalization and watched me break down when in a delirium he didn't recognize me.

I've had only two best friends in my life. One when I was a child and we eventually drifted apart in our mid-teens. After her I've been blessed with lots of wonderful and important friends in different aspects of my life, but none of them were *best friends* - until I met Cris in 2000. She was a friend of several of my life-long friends through their kids' school, but somehow I had never met her. Until I did.  It took over 20 years for me to find another best friend, and when I did, the connection was immediate.

Soon we were - as we call it - sharing a brain. I'm not easy and often I don't perceive things or react to things or do things like most people. It's not because I'm special, it's really because I'm weird. And, as it turned out, so is Cris. More often than not, she and I will react or respond to something completely differently than everyone else. This happens a lot. One of us will say a couple of seemingly random, unconnected words and the other will know exactly what it means, while everyone looks at us completely clueless as to what's going on - it's as if we have a "twin language" like those you see on TV where only the two kids understand it.

It took me 20 years to find my best friend - and now she is moving to Baton Rouge because her husband's job was transferred there. I know she'll remain my best friend regardless of the distance - but she won't be here. Who will I go eat new foods with? Who will go to some weird tour or museum exhibit with me? Who will listen to me ramble when my brain is full and overwhelmed and weary?

What am I going to do when she's gone?

I don't know.

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