Monday, November 10, 2008

Carrie Bradshaw aint got nothing on me

I never really watched Sex and the City when it was on HBO. No concrete reason, I just didn't. I do however, watch the reruns on TBS. Recently, the episode where Charlotte marries Trey was on. At the end of the episode, Carrie says "It's hard to find people who would love you no matter what. I was lucky enough to find three of them." And I thought to myself, well guess what Carrie Bradshaw, I have five. So take that!

Nicole (Nik) and me. Memorial Day weekend 2006

Allison, Ang, Trisha, me, Jessica - May 11, 2007

It's true though, I am blessed. I have five people in my life who accept me, my flaws, and all that comes along with me. These girls aren't simply people I call to gossip with, or go shopping with. They are the people who I count on, trust, and feel safe with. They each represent something in me, in my life that is unique.
To quote an actual author (as opposed to the fake author Carrie Bradshaw), Anais Nin "Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born."
Imagine for a moment what your best friends bring to you. What piece of your puzzle they make fit. Think about how your life changed when that friend became part of it, or how it would changed if they were no longer around. The reality can be pretty harsh. I owe a lot of who I am to 5 women.

Trisha came into my life at it's roughest point. It had just turned 16 and my mom had passed away just a few months earlier. I was pushing away the people and things that were there before my moms death because, in all honesty I was in an awful place of denial and grief.
Trisha and her family were amazing to me. My dad let me stay at her house whenever I wanted and her parents, who were strict about a lot of things let me stay there on school nights, weekends, whenever. I even hung out with Trisha when she was grounded (which always seemed to be around school holiday breaks). I had a safe haven with Trisha and her family. And for me, that was worth everything.
It may be difficult to understand, but life just feels easier with Trisha. She is fun, kind, compassionate and understanding. We talk on the phone everyday and often to our husbands dismay, more than once a day. For the record, it has nothing to do with distance. When I lived 20 minutes away it was the same. We would meet for lunch and shopping, head home and be on the phone an hour later. I laugh until my sides hurt with that girl and I feel a little lost if I go a day or so without talking to her. She keeps you is good spirits, and makes life fun.
So, in short: Trisha brought fun to my world when I was sixteen and she still does today

Allison and I became friends my junior year of high school. I was friends with her older sister and she somehow got stuck keeping my entertained for my birthday so my surprise party wouldn't be ruined. Doing a favor for her big sister led to an amazing friendship.
Allison is funny, sincere, thoughtful and dependable. She listens. Its a quality I think is underrated. When I had my second miscarriage Allison was the first person I called after Jim. I was alone in the car. I was trying to get home to be with Jim, and now I barely remember that drive. I remember calling Jim, then Allison. I feel terrible about it now, but I made her tell the other girls. I couldn't do it that day. I called her for lots of reasons, but the main two were that I knew she would take care of telling everyone and that I could tell her what happened, ask her to make the calls, say I didn't want to talk and hang up. I didn't feel guilty or worried that it would hurt her feelings. I just knew it would be ok. She came over and just sat there with me. I think there was a lot of silence that visit, but it was ok, and a few days later she came back with girlfriends, girls movies, pizza and snacks. It was what I needed and wanted but felt bad asking for. I didn't have to ask with Allison though, she just knew. I hate to sum up the way I feel about our friendship through that pain, but its a big example of what she means to me and has done for me.
We don't talk on the phone a ton, but it always rings with Allison on the other line at just the right moment. I really need to call her more.
If it weren't for Allison, I would not be as sensitive to people around me, and not as in tune with others feelings. I am grateful for her because of it.

I honestly don't remember exactly how or when Jessica became the friends we are now. We started school together in sixth grade, but it was not until high school that we became close friends. Jessica is caring, thoughtful, warm, dependable, and logical. I know logical sounds like an odd way to describe a friend, but it just fits. If you have a problem, you call Jessica. When I need something, a problem solved, an opinion on what shoes to wear, I want to complain about something, etc., I think of Jessica first. Getting married? Planning a baby shower? Going on vacation? Just call Jessica and viola! its organized.
And thoughtful....well in my opinion it is her best quality. Jessica has saved me so many times, and she probably doesn't even know it. Days when the weight of things seems to hold me down, I open my email, and there is an ecard from Jessica. She organized a birthday dinner for me one year, and ensured my husband didn't forget to throw me a 30th birthday party. I told Jessica one time (maybe a few more), that if I wasn't pregnant by my 30th birthday I wanted a wild and crazy (which by most peoples standards is pretty tame) birthday party. Well, the party happened. As for wild and crazy...there were martinis AND karaoke. Top that! I dare ya to try. Jessica has a way of putting her friends first. Its an amazing quality.
Jessica reminds me what is means to be a great friend.

Angie (Ang) and I met through friends the year after I graduated high school. We became quite the duo rolling around in her purple truck with big white cap (it was a smooth ride). We hung out for a few years and decided to get an apartment of our own. Her mom was a surrogate mom to me.
Ang is funny, kind, thoughtful, and easy going.
Ang and I got an apartment together when I was 21 and she was 20. It was a weird stage for me. I was not a girl, not yet a woman. OK, all kidding and Britney Spears references aside, I was a little lost. I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life and I had just had my heart broken. So, we ventured a full ten minutes from home and got an apartment. It was one of the best experiences of my life. I am so glad I had that time. I was on my own, figuring things out, and independent. I was a little dependent on Ang, but you know what I mean. We had so much fun together. She helped me get over the heart break, which got worse before it got better, reminded to have fun, and ensured I didn't take life too seriously. She made sure I felt good about me because of me, not anyone else. I love my life now, but there are moments when I miss the days in that apartment.
Ang reminds me that my joy is always up to me to.

Nicole (Nik) is my soul mate in a way.
I didn't get to meet Nik until 2001. I took a job that I ended up hating and she worked for the company. I know the day I met Nik, but I will still tell you I don't remember becoming her friend, because it feels like we have been friends for a lifetime. She married Jims best friend Sean. We are somewhat responsible for that. Jim thought a set up was a bad idea, because it could mess up our friendship if something went wrong. So, instead, we ensured they were both along on a group outing. But this isn't about Sean (sorry buddy)
Nik is understanding, patient, sincere, and warm. You feel comfort just being in her presence. The moment you walk into her, Sean, and now Fionas home, you feel at ease.
Nik makes people feel special without even trying. She remembers you mentioning a book you loved in passing, or that you don't like tomatoes. A birthday cake is served on a glass cake stand, after your favorite dinner. A meal you mentioned you loved maybe one time. She knows your mood, your feelings, and your thoughts before the words come out of your mouth.
Its difficult to explain here, but Nik is responsible for helping me reconnect with the some of the memories of my mom. My mom gave me my passion for cooking and baking, but I never fully nurtured it until I saw it all in action though Nik.
Nicole brought safety and comfort to my world. It is a gift I could never repay.

I know it is cliche, but I have read the saying that "Friends are the family you choose yourself." If that is true, then I think I should be pretty proud of my decision making skills. In my opinion though, I think they chose me, and I am forever grateful.

Speaking of grateful, no complaints on the pictures ladies. Unless of course, you would like to email me a picture of your choosing and I will review and post.


Jessica said...

Wow! That was a tear jerker! Love you Carrie!
PS - if you're Carrie - - I want to be Charlotte :)

Angie said...

WOW!! I have to say - it's really nice to hear about your friends through the eyes of someone else. You were dead on with everything. Thank you so much! I miss you every day and I love you! I have to say, I miss the apartment, too. Life was so simple, yet it seemed so hard at times back then! You saved me, too. I needed to be out of the house I was in, and was getting depressed with things when we hatched the plan!! Best idea ever! Love ya!

Jennifer P. said...

What a fabulous tribute to your friends! I loved that some of them have been there since you were young, and others have come along later in life---but they're all still there! All my bf's are scattered across the country. I would LOVE to get them together for a picture like that. One day...

I am so glad you are surrounded by those who love you so much and appreciate the light that it is in you!

Trisha said...

Ok. So for the record, I did read this first!!! Ha!Ha! And although everyone knows I'm not the greatest with words (um, your birthday)I thinks it's pretty obvious that we are really the lucky ones to have you for such a great friend:) Can't wait to see ya & of course SHOP!!!!!!