i have a best friend from 3rd grade. mary and i have been through everything. she moved from california and i immediately knew i'd like her. i invited her to my birthday party, the first she was invited to in michigan, and my dog gave her the warmest welcome by peeing on her sleeping bag. nice. i thought the friendship was over. surprisingly, mary stuck around. like, for 25 years and counting.
we survived grade school, middle school, high school, new cars, testing our teenager limits, siblings, parents, college and accepting the fact that we would be at different schools freshman year. and then the bomb dropped. mary's family moved to florida right after her senior year of high school and she went with them, but she came back up in the fall to try college up here. she realized over that year how much she missed her family, and decided to transfer to a closer school, like hundreds of miles away and at the complete end of the continent from me. we lost the opportunity to see each other more often, but not the strong friendship we had built over the years. i realize now that those kind of friendships can never be broken. she has seen me at my worse, and she is still my friend. what we have will always be.
enter jersey. mary got engaged on new years. to a boy i had only heard of on the phone, through emails and texts. they are getting married in october in florida, and of course, a shower and bachelorette party needs to happen. mary's extended family on her mom's side takes up half the jersey shore, it seems like. so a family shower was planned on the east coast. it gave me the perfect chance to celebrate, see her and meet her boy. except she didn't know. i coordinated with her younger sisters, her mom and sis picked me up at the airport, and i walked into the shore house like normal and up to her room to hug the heck out of her. it was pretty awesome. tears, hugs, smiles, a joyful reunion. and then it rolled right into just how it always had been. all of her siblings were there, and i got teased by her older brother, just like old times. here mama was there, and i was loved and treated as her 5th child, just like old times. it was like we'd never been apart.
it was a quick 2 day trip, but it was fantastic. i am so thankful for this friendship and so happy for my mary. i am looking so forward to this wedding.