I’ve recently reconnected with a special friend; my very first playmate. We lived in Veteran’s housing when I was small and we had a communal backyard where our Moms would put us in harnesses and tie us to the fence. There we could play and they would keep an eye on us as they went out doing their household chores. Nowadays people would be aghast if they saw us, but back then, no one thought it was abusive because all the Moms did it and it was safe to leave your children outside. But that’s how long we’ve known each other. My family moved away from that neighborhood and although our families stayed in touch, it was through Christmas cards and notes with an occasional get-together thrown in. In their later years, they resumed their friendship and a group of friends shared regular monthly luncheons and emails full of jokes and tidbits of news.
D. and I became FB friends not long ago and have been messaging each other lengthy, chatty notes for a little while now. She lost her Mom the year before I lost mine and we’ve been telling our stories to each other. Her notes have made me cry and she said the same about mine. She said something in her last one that really hit home for me and I thought sums it up beautifully. She said “everyone else visited and I stayed.” It doesn’t mean that no one else cared, it means that she and I shared a special bond with our Moms, one that well beyond the roles of Mother/Daughter and we were the ones who took care of them without being asked or without question. I wonder if I feel the loss of my Mom more keenly than my siblings because I WAS there. I know they loved her and miss her dearly, but I wonder if it’s as much of a struggle for them as it is for me. I still reach for the phone and start to call to see how she’s doing and it cuts my heart when I remember that she won’t pick up. My friend says she still does the same thing.
If I sit here crying as I type, she understands my daily heartache. I think God popped her back into my life to help me or so that maybe we could help each other. He works that way. DDL, this post is for you. Thank you for reaching out and reconnecting.