In the last week, I have literally spent hours on the phone with Heather. Half the time we are giggling our butts off and making mischief for some poor man, the rest of the time, we spend trying to solve life's little problems. After more than twenty years, there are only a few secrets left to either of us, and there is so much that ties us together: family, shared experiences, a knowledge of who we were before we invent the selves we are now.
Our relationship is a little hard to define. She used to babysit me and my brothers; she wasn't our favorite sitter because she always left the cheese out of the mac and cheese. She gave me my first facial then sent me downstairs where her brother was, which meant that green mask cracked because I was laughing at him. Some of the best dating advice I ever got was from Heather. Her mom is my mom's best friend, even if she can't remember anymore (Heather's mom has Alzheimer's and sadly, doesn't remember lots of things). We know each other's family history, extended relative, and understand that some parts of who you are inherited as much as you'd like to deny it. These days, we're related, too. My mom is married to her uncle. Her cousin is now my step-sister. It makes explaining who we are to each other a bit complicated, especially since we look more related to each other than we do some of our more genetically related family members.
If you put us together, you will probably get confused, amused and wonder where the earplugs are (did I mention that both of our families have one volume- LOUD). Heather is the perfect person for me to vent to when I'm mad at my husband, because she always can remind me that I really don't want either alternative dating or loneliness. I'm able to laugh at her dating (mis)adventures, and then turn around and give her practical or witchy advice in all seriousness. I laugh at her, sometimes, but never with malice, just as she does to me. My husband is our practical and grounded kite string, who listens to all of our shenanigans, offers his opinions and pithy momentary, and then prevent us from taking off on some wild tangent without the proper preparations (which is no fun, but keeps us out of most trouble).
My husband had dinner with Heather the other night while he was in Southern California for work. She told him her current dating woes, and he calmly advised her to take a risk and ask the poor guy if he wanted her as just a fire or something more. Which was the exact advice I had given her that afternoon over the phone (no we didn't confer, we're just that in tune, sometimes). That always kind of annoys her and makes her laugh.
Heather and I can tell each the hard truths without hurting each other, because we are comfortable in our love for each other. That is important to always have friends who love you, who can disagree with you and occasionally call BS when you lie to yourself. As much as we've changed over the years, we are still in each other's lives because there is too much in our pasts to separate us. We disagree, laugh at each other, and yell at each other's kids because it's a strong, safe relationship. So when I finally get around to writing about Heather's journey. Don't take it as mocking. Take as look into a complicated and frequently silly relationship. When I laugh at the message sent to her by the Universe, it's because I understand her dismay, frustration and desire to prove it wrong.