I just finished reading one of my favorite books in a long time....Nobody's Cuter Than You by Melanie Shankle. It's about friendship and I just know Melanie would be one of my best good friends if we only lived closer. It's the only thing keeping us apart. I loved everything about this book though....from reminiscing about growing up in the 70's (the best time to grow up I'm totally convinced) to paying tribute to the friendships that define us and sustain us as we move through this life. Coincidentally, I've been waxing poetic about the years of my youth and I've worn my kids out lately with tales of traveling backwards in my parent's Oldsmobile Cruiser station wagon (sans seatbelts of course), listening to 8-tracks of the Carpenters, Bee Gees, and Englebert Humperdinck while we snacked on Funyons, Pop Rocks and Yoo-hoo. I mean, come on. There's also a great 70's station on Pandora and as I've been singing all the lyrics out loud I've realized how completely inappropriate they were. Am pretty sure I must have thought an Afternoon Delight was a treat from the ice cream truck.
But about friends....
I never had a sister but I don't know what I'd do without my girlfriends and it amazes me how every one of them truly completes me. Friends are like sisters you get to choose. On Mother's Day there were texts flying back and forth between us with the recurrent message of "you help me be a better Mom." There are many days when I'm ready to throw in the towel and run away in a fur coat and end up in a hotel room at the beach. (girlfriends know what this means) They tell me they understand and don't go without them. They brighten my day with a funny text that makes me laugh out loud or a phone call "just to hear my voice." They show up during a hurricane with some ice, medicine for my sick child, and a carafe full of Bloody Mary for me. They give perfect gifts because they know me so well. They tell me to take the swimsuit I've been wearing for years and throw it out of the window as far as I can and go buy something that's flattering. And they mean it in the nicest way. They remind me not to wear my sensible shoes when I'm headed out for a fabulous evening, and they take my kids for a few hours when they can tell someone might get hurt if they don't. They know everything about me....sometimes even before I tell them....and love me in spite of it. If they say they're praying for me, I know they mean it. Sometimes they do it in a call or text if they can't get to me. You never forget the first time you met because you knew it was going to be the start of a beautiful friendship....and you start to go into withdrawals if you haven't seen them in a while. Sometimes a while is just a few days but it's still a day or two too long.
My best friend Kim, who I met on my very first day of law school orientation, and with whom I've been through just about everything, told me something once when I was lamenting over another friendship that had fallen to the wayside. She said "Poodle, sometimes you just have to clean out your friend closet. Sometimes you hang on to an old dress or outfit just because it's been there for so long but one day you realize you've outgrown it, or you just don't feel right in it anymore, and it's ok to let it go. Sometimes you realize that you bought something on a whim and it's just not your style, and you need to chunk it. Sometimes you wonder what the heck you were ever thinking with those wedge shoes or sparkly bag or pleather pants, and you send it on to someone who actually likes it. And that's ok. But that Chanel suit....you never get rid of that. Because it never goes out of style. And it will always make you happy, just knowing it's there." She should know because she's my Chanel suit. And I know I'm hers. I'm really lucky because I have a few "Chanel suits" in my friend closet.
But all you really need is one.
And if you know what I'm talking about....you need to read Melanie's book. And if you ever rode backwards in a station wagon listening to 8-tracks (with the rear window open for Pete's sake....), you'll love it even more.