Monday, November 17, 2008

When I grow up...

I went out for dinner with my oldest friend last Friday. We headed out for a night on the town to try out a new restaurant. And managed to enjoy ourselves despite a bit of an "ick" factor as the mâitre-d' flirted and was a bit too touchy-feely than I would have liked.

By "oldest" girlfriend, I mean that she was my very first best friend in elementary school. We met and became inseparable in Grade 5. We had secret diaries, our own little club, would share our Judy Blume books and even our first crushes. When we found out how babies came to be and how they came into the world, we were shocked and couldn't imagine being mothers. Nuh-uh, not for us! We would walk home from school in the freezing cold trying to remember, but inevitably messing up the lyrics of David Bowie's "Fame". We were always laughing. Good times that I still remember quite vividly, memories from over 30 years ago.

Through the years, we drifted apart somewhat. We were always friends, but ran in different circles once in high school. I went through an uber-geek period, and she never did. We were never really quite as close on a day to day basis, our friendship not as intense as it was in those early years. We attended different universities in different cities, but still kept our friendship up. Everytime we talked on the phone or got together, even if it had been months between, it was as if we'd last spoken the day before.

We've seen each other through major life milestones ... weddings, babies ...and over the years we would get together occasionally with our families. I knew when she was going through a rough patch in her marriage; she knew of our struggles getting pregnant. When I called her with news of my second pregnancy she shared news of her own about her break-up. We both could guess what each other's news was before we even said the words.

But since that phone call, our relationship changed somewhat. We've gotten closer on a certain level. We stay in touch probably more than we ever did before. Perhaps it's her newfound "freedom" and my moving into a new phase of SAHM-ness while trying to keep a foot in the working door ...we relate as women now. Talking about raising kids to be responsible people; wondering how to best fight the good fight in our sagging 40s; our careers; the complexities of relationships; dealing with ageing parents. Sure, we still talk about men; I live somewhat vicariously through her dating stories (not that I would ever want to be in that scene again, but she's been seeing some hot guys!). We still laugh a lot, but it's no longer just girl talk.

Amazing, isn't it? We're adults now.

Do you ever feel like you're just a kid playing in a grown-up world?

Yeah, I do too.


Anonymous said...

I feel like I am playing house more days than I should.. It is wonderful that you have been able to stay friends and still grow..having a friend to lean on or count on that has been there through the years..regardless of how close is just wonderful..

Anonymous said...

yeah.. and my new name is iimylyn.. I need more coffee.. lol.. where is your burnt stuff?

Gina said...

I don't think I'll ever really feel grown up. I look in the mirror and see a middle aged mom person but that's not who I am inside.

imbeingheldhostage said...

That's good, it will keep you young-- and a much more fun mom!

Tara R. said...

Old friends are the best because sometimes you can just sit and not have to say anything. And, you know all each other's secrets. ;)

Kori said...

Sometimes things happen and I find myself kind if looking around wondering when the grownups are going to show up to fix it. And then I realize damn, I am the grownup.

Badness Jones said...

Sounds like a wonderful friendship....and sometimes I think our whole lives are spent playing grown-up. My grandmother is in 85, and she says she still feels the way she did as a teenager, and she can't understand why her body isn't co-operating.

petite gourmand said...

Thats nice that you have stayed in touch all these years.
I just reconnected with one of my oldest friends too.
In fact we went to see Jamie Oliver the other day.
It was so fun laughing about old times.

J said...

I have a friend, Neva, who was my best friend in 6th grade. She went to a different middle school than I did, and we drifted. She hung out with a different crowd in HS, I went to college, she didn't, and we completely lost track of each other. As women, we both got married and changed our names, making finding each other even harder.

Back in 2001 or 2002, I joined, hoping to find her. I did! The first time we met up for dinner, I was scared, what if we had changed too much? I shouldn't have worried. It was just like no time at all had gone by.

Now we get together about once a month for dinner...she lives about an hour and a half away, but works only 20 minutes away...and though we sometimes don't see eye to eye on all of the issues, we open each others eyes to our own point of view. And we laugh SO much. We just crack each other the hell up, and especially then, I do feel like a fraud. A 12 year old in the body of a 42 year old.

Love her.

Thanks for this post. Lovely.

Kamis Khlopchyk said...

All the time! I still sometimes pinch myself...but nope, I am an adult.

Now if I could just start acting line one too....

Those kind of friends are once in a lifetime, it's wonderful that your friendship has preserved over the years.

OHmommy said...

OMG. I do. Nearly every day I feel like I am playing in an adult world. Nice insight Karen.

Unknown said...

Confession time.
I bought floor tickets for me and 4 friends to see Neil Diamond next month.
I may need a concert intervention.

April said...

Oh, completely! That's awesome that you still are friends with her.


Blog Widget by LinkWithin