My best mate

I’m leaving the place I have come to call home for the last eleven years. I am feeling rather sentimental and am mulling over the friendships I have to leave behind. If your other half is your “rock”, your female friends are your anchors. I’ve often thanked the heavens for my best friend in the last eight years of starting our family.
A best friend is someone who rushes over at 2am on New Years Eve to watch your children and sleep on your couch so your husband can attend your babies’ emergency delivery. She attends your delivery as your midwife. She gives you the news that you will be having a general anaesthetic and you won’t be meeting your babies for a while.

You cry and joke about childbirth, you hold hands and go out on the sound of her counting.

She holds the babies up to your unconscious face to bond. Whilst doing so she sheds tears on you. You know this because the anaesthetist dobbed her in later. 
She has twins too, and like you with yours she feared for their lives in the early days.
She is your neighbour, she shares a similar sense of humour, she has a disability and so do you. Her sons are in the same year at school as yours; your children play together, she is your sister; you just met her. She’s a prolific Facebook poster and a blogger, just like you. 

Late at night you read her updates and snortle into your husbands sweaty elcove* She’s a feminist, a 1950’s housewife and politically is the polar opposite to you.

You laugh over men and Shirley Conran, you drink coffee, share gossip and tell dirty jokes. She predicted the sex of your baby after talking to a pounamu. 

You tell her all your life secrets. She forgives you your trespasses and joins you for a meal regardless. You’ve known her since university and wish you could catch up more. You both have commitments, and newborns; periodically you exchange your news.

You’re well acquainted with the rigours of parenthood. You’ve both had children in the Neonatal ward. She lost a child. You’ve had several miscarriages. Your souls are now tempered in the great forge of pain. 

She has taught your children at Playcentre and preschool and has been a great nanny too.
She is still a teenager. She brings you muffins as gifts and brie and crackers. You both know what it was like to starve for the sake of “beauty”.
Beauty takes a second footing to health when you’re both struggling with chronic conditions. She has a bad back and heart and you both get on and make the most of what you have.

You both take on far too many commitments. She is the cousin you just got back in touch with. She used to work and drink with you. When you were at your wits end she took you out for a coffee, she’s even a techie geek too.
She is a different generation and holds a public office and has even written a couple of books. You admire the heck out of her, though you’d never tell her. She fed your family when you were ill; your children call her the biscuit lady. Her house has been in Home and Garden.  She is an entrepreneur and a sloppy perfectionist like you.

Most of all: though she will live in a different city now, she watches your back; she’d be there for you no questions asked and you’re going to miss the hell out of her. She is a great mother, a patient listener and has always been there for you.

*elcove – The inside arm just above the elbow that is interchangeable with the top of a  butt-crack. As in: “I’m in my warm safe place; listening to Morrissey and smooching into my husbands elcove”. 

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