This time two weeks from now, I’ll be fanning my best friend’s flushed cheeks as we dash to her rehearsal dinner. We will be running late, she will be stressed, I will be providing wine in a Tervis tumbler. My purse will be packed with hairspray, bobby pins, spare underwear, sample bottles of vodka, and as much cash as I need to bribe whatever taxi driver/waiter/bartender controls my friend’s happiness at any given moment.
I know this to be true because Kristy did all of this for me four years ago at my own wedding rehearsal, and was therefore the best Maid of Honor a girl could ask for.
Now, it’s my turn to be her Matron of Honor and do my various duties of fluffing various dresses, pinning stray hairs into place, and warming cold feet. I am happy to do all this and more, because she is my person.
Kristy and I have been friends for nearly 30 years, so when we watched this episode of Grey’s Anatomy together in 2005, we were like, ‘duh, you’re my person.’ There was never any question.
Through schools, sports, boyfriends, colleges, states, marriages, babies, dogs, cats, pizzas, vacations, parties, books, movies, and everything else a life has to offer, Kristy and I have remained the best of friends. We can go weeks without talking or have a marathon of texts that last for months on end, but either way, we have so much shared life experience with Barbies and musical instruments and annoying little brothers that the timeline has ceased to matter.
I thought of her all day today as I worked on drafting my wedding speech at Starbucks, accompanied by a grande chai tea latte and a strange man who was aggressively playing video games on his smartphone.
I remembered losing my last baby tooth in a Wendy’s cheeseburger in her mom’s car, riding to our gifted education program together in the backseat of my mom’s car, trying out for and not making her select soccer team, watching her break her collarbone while tripping in a hole while playing for that same team, going to high school dances together even though we went to different schools, buying the very same first car in order to drive back and forth to one another’s schools, her calling me to fill me with righteous indignation when my boyfriend dumped me and me calling her to break her heart when I found out the truth about why her high school boyfriend had mysteriously stopped speaking to her.
I reminisced about our shared past all day as I crafted some writing to express my hopes for her in the future. I’m still working on my speech, but I know this: what sustains love is everything I just listed–the shared joys and sadnesses, wins and losses, smiles and tears that make up a lifetime of memories.