Photo by 46186mommyof4
There are the girlfriends in life who are with you through it all. And then there are the ones who drift away. Sometimes we drift away from our girlfriends because of kids, family, moves, or just life on life's terms. Sometimes we outgrow one another and while it's sad, it's probably for the best.
But sometimes, we drift apart from a girlfriend and it aches. We don't know why it happened. Or sometimes we do, but we couldn't seem to stop it. We want to go back. We want to make it work. But it's impossible to go back. And so we miss that friendship forever.
My mom lost this particular friend of hers this week suddenly to cancer. Her best friend from another time and place. And as she put it, the news of her friend's death took her breath away.
My mom and S were the best of friends when I was a kid. Raising their kids together. Doing the married with children thing. S's daughter was my brother's age, her oldest son my age, and her younger son several years behind us all.
I always adored S. She was much more feisty than my mom. Much more open to discussing all the "good stuff," always pulling my tiny ears into the next room to listen. She didn't beat around the bush or avoid juicy topics of conversation. I loved this. And she and my mom would laugh and laugh together.
Of course, then life happened. S and her family moved about 30 minutes away and later she and her husband divorced. All of us kids got busy in high school and with life, and we got together less and less. S faced many family tragedies (death of an adult child, illness of another adult child, and lastly her own illness) in the years that followed. Life was not always kind. While she and my mom touched base around these troubled times, I know my mom always longed to be close again, to share a glass of wine, a laugh, some time with her old friend.
I'm not sure what the lesson is here or if there even is one. It's impossible to say "Don't drift away..." because it happens. Life happens. We drift away — sometimes even when we love someone very much. Even when that person knows our history and shared an era of our life with us.
All I know is my mom's feelings about S — over time and distance and now in death — have not changed. She will always consider her one of her closest friends.
Do you have an old friend like "S" in your life, a friend who you've lost touch with and miss?