Saturday, January 31, 2015

The Joys of Seeing my BFF of 28 Years!

Okay, lovely readers, I have to tell you about my Thursday.  I got to see my dear friend of 28 years in San Francisco!  We ate fantastic food, talked forever, and finally had a proper family meal that included our husbands!  (It was the first time these wonderful men finally met each other and spent time with the infamous pair of Suzanne & Kristi!)

My BFF of 28 years is also pregnant!  I got to see her beautiful baby bump, listen to her marvelous complaints and fears about being pregnant and impending motherhood.  We walked around the city, hung out in her hotel room with killer views, and generally appreciated having time together.

It was also incredibly special to me to be in San Francisco with her.  Growing up, every summer Kristi would sojourn to The Bay to see her daddy.  So, for about a month every summer, I would miss my best friend.  Getting to spend a day out here with her was truly spectacular!

See, Kristi and I met when I was 5 and she was 7.  My life has never been the same since.  She became my partner in crime, and the only one I knew who understand what it was having divorced parents in our small southern hometown.  Her mother was my 2nd mama, and taught me about playing outside barefoot, trying new food, and exploring the excitement of childhood.  I spent enough weekends at her grandmother's house in FL that the sunlight and the plants in her kitchen are an image forever burned into my dearest memories. 

St. Augustine, Mother-Daughter Beach Trip 1991

Kristi has been an amazing big sister, perfect best friend, and life long companion on the road of life.  My journey has been all the better for having her as a part of it.

Halloweens 1989 and 1992

Whether we were dancers & gypsies, Laurel & Hardy, or Michelle & Rachael (the girlfriends of Mikey & Ralph of the TMNT), we were inseparable when we were together.  Our imaginations ran wild, we shared our happiest moments, our deepest fears, and vented about life, in general.

New Years Celebration 2000 when the world didn't end

As we grew up, the two years between us turned our friendship into a slinky type yo-yo.  We went through so many of the same phases; some aligned and others did not.  But we have always had a deep connection: the kind that years only make stronger and more dear.

Kristi's Mom surprised Kristi by bringing me to her college graduation, 2003

I have always been impressed with this woman's ability to grow personally.  She has always maintained her own moral compass while allowing it to be informed by her life experiences.  She has walked through life seeking to love, nurture, and support those around her.  She has learned to care for herself, and love herself.  I am ridiculously lucky to call her friend.  And her daughter will be so blessed to get to call her mommy!

 Kristi and I at my wedding reception in 2008

There's something magical about being in a space with someone who knows you so intimately.  Kristi knows what it was to grow up in Valdosta, go to the schools I attended, march in the marching band I marched in, attend the church I grew up in, and be someone who never quite fit.  And I know the same for her.

 Kristi and I at her wedding in 2011 (I just now realized that our bridesmaids dresses were basically the same shade of blue . . . )

It is amazing to me how much I have changed and grown, and yet, how much I have stayed the same all these years.  Its as if the 5 year-old version of me and the 32 year-old version of me are exactly the same, and all those years in between were about wandering away and coming back to myself.  

The two of us, San Francisco CA 2015!

But one thing I know will always stay the same is my precious relationship with this truly impressive woman, and I am all the more happy about my future knowing this little fact.