Thursday, February 26, 2009

Terms and Titles

Well... it just has to be said:
I know my mother raised me right, because I hated her when I was a teenager and now she's my best friend.**

Ah, there's that term again. Best friend.
What exactly does it mean?
JMS and I had the most interesting conversation this morning about best friends. When I was a kid, I had a slew of them (not kidding, probably had 6 or 7 halves of those BFF hearts necklaces), while in high school the number dived to 4. The older I get, the less best friends I have. Here's what I do have...

Rachel and Raina- every time someone asks me who my best friend is, I have to say, "Other than my sisters?". They are the ones who know me inside and out. Know where I came from, know what my dreams have been since I have been able to convey them (and they know the ones I can't put into words), they know where I embellish a story, and they know when I say "don't tell anyone" it means anyone other that the other sister and Mother. There is a divine amount of trust and security that binds us all together. They're my sisters, a title I think goes far beyond 'best friend'.

Then there is Jennifer Lazarini. I called her my best friend when I lived in Memphis. This is a girl who's lifestyle is as far removed from mine as possible- and though we may only talk once a year, each conversation seems to have no time lapse. When we first met, I was married and living in domesticated bliss and she was a total wild child. Then I got divorced and slipped on my party shoes, and she married the guy I got into a bar fight with. She is the first person outside of my family that I asked to be a bridesmaid after I got engaged the second time. She said, "Of course, who is this guy?" Then when the relationship ended I called to tell her her services were no longer needed and she said, "No problem, who was that guy?" I'd do anything in this world for her and confident she would do the same.
Rizzo. Hands down I'd say he is my best friend now- but I think it's a title I have to give him because no one would understand the relationship we have if it wasn't defined that way. If I say "oh, we're just friends" it sounds like we're keeping things on the down low. So I've title him that way, but I'll be honest- we have a great friendship, and I couldn't imagine my life without him, but I'm not going to call him when my uterus explodes or I find a great pair of shoes on sale.

Vicki French. Oh Vic... we met when she started dating Rizzo (it only lasted for a few weeks) and I truly believe that they got together for the sole purpose of us finding each other. At the time, Rizzo was living with me so Vicki was at my house pretty much every day. I loved her from the first moment I met her. It's hard not to, actually. It always surprises me when someone says they don't like her (I automatically think they are jealous and laugh at them) because she is picture perfect in beauty, she has the kindest soul and the sweetest heart. Even though I'm 5'2 and she's 5'8, I'm constantly feeling the need to protect her and take car of her. I'd destroy someone in .2 seconds for even looking at her cross. She is one of the most important people in my life and it's so odd, because even when I (used to :)) do something so despicably awful, she'd give me a hug and say "I love you. You're still beautiful to me." Best friend doesn't seem like enough of a title for her. I'd say she's like my sisters in that way, but 'sister' is a title only Raina and Rachel will ever have. So where does that leave Vicki?

Then there is the amazing JMS. She's another one it would be easy to call my best friend, but that isn't enough! I've known her the shortest time, but I know her. We're completely different in the main aspects of our lives, but somehow those things only add to the dimensions of our friendship. I talk to her every day and most time she knows things about me before anyone else. There are no taboo subjects between us. We get that the other one is essentially crazy and fundamentally dorky and we have good clean fun together. Most of the time I feel like I'm in high school when we hang out and I love that we become total girls when we're together. I'm waiting for the day when we get to have a slumber party and paint our fingernails and try out different make-up and experiment with off-the-wall hair styles. But she's also the first adult friendship I've had. As my life grows and lightens she is my confident in very real, very life changing events. It's so odd, because nothing the other one does really impact our independent futures, but I hope to heaven that I will be around her long enough to see the amazing and beautiful twists and turns her life will take.

Then I've got the "girls" (most of the time, this term refers to my boobs, but not today). They are the everyday girls that I can call for a drink or go visit out of state and generally with whom I pass the time. They are dear, dear friends- but not even close to best.

So where does that leave me? Am I getting too old for the term "best friend"?
Personally, I don't think it's a bad trade for what I get instead.

**This post was going to be about something pertaining to Mother, but I went off on a tangent. It's what happens when I don't control myself! I had to change the title and everything. Oh well, looks like I'll post "My Parents Are Gross" tomorrow...

You're horribly fascinated by that, aren't you?


Maggie May said...

i love this post! my best friend, seriously, is my husband. we met at 19 and that's how we were- best friends- for years before we 'hooked up'. to me that word means safety, understanding, a common sense of humor, music, art, ethics, morality, concern, and many things in common about how we want to experience and live in the world. we can look at each other and laugh or feel sad and get it without saying a word.

i think i'll do a post about this at some point and link ya as the inspiration! it makes me think of my girlfriends over the years and who and why they were or are 'best friends'.

Sunday's Pearl said...

You should! I think friendships, real friendships, get so rare the older we get- it's nice to keep a running a list of people who would help you bury a body.