You know those friends you had growing up? The ones that were more like siblings or cousins? Their parents liked you as much as their own kids (or you thought maybe more cause you were more polite) and you were over at their house all the time eating their food and hanging out? Well this week I had the chance of reconnecting with two of those kinds of friends.
My friend Ginna lived just down the street from me. We grew up playing Star Wars and Runaway Orphans in their woodsy backyard. We nailed boards together and collected old Christmas trees to create our own forts. We thought that she'd marry my brother and I'd marry her's. We didn't, of course, and its really best that way but whatever. As we got older, Ginna became one of those people that I really looked up to. She was like my high school mother, taking me under her wing. I'd tell her all of my long, hideous, and silly tales of flirtations and almost-boyfriends and she'd give me sound advice. I made her be my spokesman during my summers in the PHS marching band--she asked the band teacher all of my dumb freshman questions and exchanged my uniform when my pants made me look like the pillsbury dough-boy. At girl's camp she must have been completely annoyed when my best friend Kenna and I fought like cats, but she never once let us have it. She was patient and sweet on both sides. When we went to BYU, I'd drop in on Ginna in her apartment from time to time and thought she was so cool living there. She was. But then she got married, I went on a mission, and we just lost contact.
On Friday, Ginny, her husband Kris, and adorable son Max met us at Bajio and not only was my chimichanga delightful, but so was the company. They came to our house afterwards and Maggie and Max became instant friends--running around the house and backyard giggling and screaming. No matter that Max can read and Maggie can only say 7 words--every kid speaks the language of remote control Toyota trucks. It was wonderful to chat with Ginna and feel like nothing had changed between us.
Hillary was another dear friend. My mother taught her in kindergarten (and all of her siblings). Infact, my mother credits herself for the fact that Hillary has a little sister. At Hill's last parent teacher conference my mom said to Hillary's parents, "Your children are my favorites. She really can't be your last one." Later on, Erin was born and my mom taught her too. Hillary and I went to the same elementary school and were good friends, but the summer before high school we became best friends. We'd borrow each other's clothes, spend hours taking quizes from Seventeen Magazine, make each other mixed tapes, and help each other with homework. We took half our classes together, joined the same clubs (including Mock Trial where Hillary was always the "best Bailiff"), and talked liberal politics. I called Hill's Mom "Mother Call" and I meant it too. Her parents were the best. Her dad thought I was hilarious and her mom thought I was a saint. My parents adored Hill as well. Dad taught her in honors English and thought she was a freakin' genius. My mom never could call her anything but "Hilly"--I think that must have been her little kindergarten nick-name.
Then it kind of fell apart. I think I'd taken Hillary's friendship for granted. I still don't know exactly what happened, but I lost a dear friend. Well, a few months ago, Hillary stumbled upon my blog and we started emailing back and forth. Today we did lunch. Hillary is as beautiful, smart, and liberal as ever. She has a great job, travels a lot, and is just amazing. She's even training for a freaking marathon. We laughed about all of the songs we used to sing in 6th grade choir, and the funny things we used to do in high school. We got updates on each others' families and it was just so nice to sit down with someone who has meant so much to me in my life. And as if the lunch weren't enough she even carried Mags to my car and buckled her into her carseat. Maggie was very upset though when Hill didn't come home with us.
So thanks Hillary and Ginna. You've made me a better person and I hope I can return the favor.