(the title has nothing whatsoever to do with what follows)
I haven’t managed to keep friends easily.
While I’d like to say something like, “it’s totally their loss,” or “it’s their fault,” there have been a number of mitigating circumstances, some of which were entirely my own fault (if one has to blame someone). I had three kids and was unable to leave the house for years. I moved from a central location to Bumfuck, Egypt. PTSD crippled my ability to let others really in.
And certainly, my former friends have done their fair share of shitballs things to me, too. I won’t fling poo, because that’s unladylike (snorts) but it has happened.
I won’t lie and say it’s been easy or particularly enjoyable, because who likes losing their friends?
Through all of the bullshit of the past couple of years, I’ve been lucky enough to maintain a few close friends; mostly people who’d once lived inside my computer but became real friends. We’ve managed to bridge the gaps in geography and, throughout it all, grow together, rather than apart.
(I include you, Pranksters, in this category)
I met Kat shortly after Amelia was born – her daughter Avi is roughly the same age – when she IM’d me to correct my grammar on a post*. And while this is an unlikely way to become friends with someone, it’s what happened.
I won’t lie or sugarcoat things here: Kat was instrumental in saving my life after Amelia was born. I was in a bad place; such a bad place that I’m not sure anyone else – including me – realized it. I would have easily told you that I was “fine,” but I was so far from fine that I couldn’t even recall what “fine” looked like any more.
Kat saved me.
Nine months ago, her husband had a stroke, spent a good amount of time in the ICU and was eventually diagnosed with a rare genetic disorder – alpha 1-angiotripsan deficiency – for which there is no cure. Her 2-year old daughter, Mimi’s clone, was also diagnosed with this.
On Friday, at the butt-ass crack of dawn, I got up and slogged my sorry ass onto an airplane to Seattle or Portland or one of those cities that is NOT Chicago on the West Coast. It was time to hug the person who had saved me.
And I did.
I also got to meet
Mimi Avi who is, just as I’d suspected, Mimi’s doppelganger in both looks and actions. When I met her, she covered her eyes shyly, only to look at me through the cracks in her fingers. I may have passed out from the cuteness.
But Kat isn’t leading an easy life now, which breaks my small, dark heart. The daily what-if stresses are, as you can imagine, crippling. I wish like hell I could say or do something more than visit; something that would matter.
When I figure out what that is, Pranksters, I’ll do it.
Instead, I’ll be thrilled that I finally got to hug my friend in person, meet her charmingly hilarious daughter, and hear my very mild-mannered friend say the one word I flew a jillion miles to hear come from her mouth: “fuck.”
*Prolly NOT the best way to become BFF with me considering both my grammar and spelling are atrocious AND I LIKE IT THAT WAY.