And …… surprising.
Surprising in very good …… and very bad ways.
We know the very bad.
If you’re reading this then you probably know the very bad.
At least in my life.
But there is also the very good.
Ten, nine, eight, seven, six years ago …… I wouldn’t have been able to see the very good.
I had seen the good. And experienced the good. At times.
But not the very good.
And I probably wouldn’t have been able to say that the “very good” was possible.
But life, ten years out, can be very good.
Mixed in with the very bad.
Beyond interesting, really.
I just came back from a week in Bermuda.
I visited a friend who I met 27 years ago.
She was one of the very first friends I made when we moved to Texas.
I remember exactly where I met her.
In the local library.
At a toddler reading time.
She was there with her 3 sons, the oldest was around three years old and she had twin toddlers.
I was there with my 6 year old, twin 4 year olds and a one year old.
I immediately zoned in on her.
Because she had twins.
And I asked her if there was was a “mother of twins/multiple club” in the area.
And the rest is history.
We became fast friends.
I loved spending time with her and letting our children play together.
I had Son #2. And she was very supportive.
I had Son #3. And she gave me a shower.
She was a good friend.
When Son #2 was 5 months old he was hospitalized with pneumonia.
She was the first person to come to the hospital.
She was more than a friend.
She was a nurse.
And she was there when they were trying to insert an IV into my little 5 month old baby.
She went into the room while I waited outside, and helped those nurses insert an IV into his head.
I was so glad that she was there.
Not long after Son #3 was born, her husband was transferred to Bermuda.
Not a bad gig, right?
But I, of course, missed her.
Son #3 and I went to visit her when he was around 8 months old (and refused to take a bottle).
That was the last time that we spent a significant amount of time together.
That was 23 years ago.
We kept in touch.
For a while.
And then we didn’t.
Luckily, I was able to track one of her sons down earlier this year.
And so we found each other again.
Twenty three years later.
I went to Bermuda last week.
And we picked up right where we left off.
I love friendships like that.
No long silences.
No uncomfortable pauses.
And catching up.
And then feeling like time had stood still.
But also had not.
She hadn’t known that Jim had died.
We had a lot of catching up to do.
And as I spent time with her and her husband …… I missed Jim.
I always miss him.
But I miss him even more when I spend time with couples.
That’s not a bad thing.
It is what it is.
I miss that man.
But life moves forward.
I can sit around missing him, and refuse to participate in life ……
Or I can move forward, too.
And enjoy what he’s not here to enjoy.
For both of us.
It’s been a great summer.
I’ve been to Ireland, Colorado, and Bermuda.
The kids are all doing well.
I’m doing well.
Most of the time.
My life isn’t perfect.
No life is.
I miss him.
But life is for the living.
And so I live.
For both of us.
Life can be …… amazing.