Friends make the world go ’round and all that . . . being as I once was a middle school girl myself it has taken some years, some pain and some investment to find out that it’s true—life is really much richer with a few good friends.
Which is all well and good when you are single and have complete control over the people with whom you spend your time.
The task of finding and maintaining life-enriching relationships, you see, gets a little more complicated when other people get into the mix. That is, when you acquire a significant other in your life. See, the thing is that the likelihood of your significant other liking both your friend and your friend’s choice of a significant other becomes less and less likely. Add a few kids to the mix, throw in varying parenting styles and some different cultural perspectives and, frankly, the possibility of having any friends at all seems more and more distant.
That’s why I consider it nothing less than a miracle that my friend, Kim—dear, wonderful friend of over10 years—has a French husband, Alexis, whom my husband (who is not French) enjoys spending time with. And further, each of our three children, conveniently matched in ages and interests, all like each other.
Further, our grand experiment last year of renting a house together and spending the whole entire week living in the same place, sharing shopping and food preparation tasks, spending evenings together, melding differing parenting styles and different languages (for Pete’s sake) turned out to be the most absolutely fun, totally refreshing and supremely memory-making summer activity I could remember having.
In fact, it was such an unlikely success that we planned another week just like it, a week we’ve just finished. The week was spent browsing local antique shops (me and Kim), playing golf (Alexis and Mark) and comparing notes on school adventures, scouting out “valuable” rocks, exploring the woods and building elaborate sand castles (kids and occasionally the men).
This year it was even more fun (if possible).
It has not escaped my notice that we are—all of us—deeply and wonderfully blessed by the gift of true friendship that spans time, culture, language, geography and changing life circumstances.
Even more reason to be disappointed that vacation is over!