My friend O’Mama celebrates another trip around the sun today, and I pause to reflect on the wonder of her presence in my life.
I met O’Mama in college; we were both graduate students at Local U, attending what we thought would be an engaging and informative class about teaching the gifted learner (but which turned out to be an annoying and pedantic class about special ed. and IDEA, but that’s neither here nor there). Truth be told, I don’t recall what brought us together from among all of the other people in the class, but in pretty short order, we’d made one another’s acquaintance and recognized something special in each other.
There are millions of things I really treasure about our friendship. Though to the casual observer, O’Mama and I live startlingly similar lives – we’re of a similar age, we’re both disgustingly happily married to educated men, we both share our lives with two teenaged daughters, we’re both bookish and geekily in love with language – but we’re also just different enough that we actually add something to each other’s experience. I love my friend’s sense of humor and her ability to discern and articulate the absurd. I love my friend’s passion for beauty in form, language, and deed – and her love of really good chocolate. I admire that O’Mama is self-aware and is in constant (though sometimes, I think, a little too relentless) pursuit of her best self. I love that we can not see each other for weeks at a time, but fall easily and instantly back into the rhythm of our friendship as if no time has passed at all (though I don’t like that our lives and schedules are such that we have to do that, I’m glad that we can). I love that we have a history together that comes with its own set of shared vocabulary and references, and I love the feeling that we’re in this together. I have every expectation that we’ll be old-lady friends who annoy younger patrons in our favorite coffee shops with our chatter and tomfoolery.
Happy birthday, my dear friend. Thank you for all that you are to me.