NORMAN — Friday morning I had the pleasure of joining two friends for breakfast.
We talked and we laughed. We admired the older couple sitting near us. Their love, like themselves, had aged gracefully. They kissed, they sat close, they smiled not only at each other but those who passed them by. Their love affair was just infectious. I can only hope to have that much admiration for my husband in another 40 years.
But as I’m sitting across the table from possibly two of the greatest friends I’ve ever met, I wondered how it was that this pair of funny, beautiful, smart women got into my life. I mean I remember how we met, but I don’t know why we met. I don’t know how our lives crossed in such a wonderful way. And I don’t care. I’m just so grateful to have their friendship.
Growing up, I remember my mom’s best friend. She was a rough and tumble gal that had a heart of gold. She never wore makeup and always wore blue jeans and a button up shirt. She didn’t spend much money at a hair salon either. She fashioned a hairdo that I’m sure came from the barber shop. She raised her two boys, she drove the school bus and she managed to keep an ornery husband in line.
I always remember it was a treat to see Janette. First of all, it meant that mom was distracted and us kids could usually get by with pretty much anything for at least an hour. But it also gave me the opportunity to see my mom in a different role. I’d seen my mother as the cook, the dishwasher, the bill payer. I’d seen her be the disciplinarian and teacher. I’d even seen her be a plumber. But when Janette came over, I got to see my mom be a friend. I saw her laugh, I saw her gossip over a cup of coffee and I saw her be a real person.
Being a friend is something to not be taken lightly. Also, being a friend can be one of the hardest jobs out there. You’ve got to be a good listener. You’ve got be caring, kind and loyal. And it doesn’t hurt to know some juicy bits to share over a plate of scrambled eggs and hash browns.
I’ve learned a lot from my mom. But the thing that I’m most proud of is that she taught me how to be a friend. I’ve had hundreds of friends, but the two women I shared a few laughs with on a cool Friday morning, well they are my Janette.
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