I have some pretty amazing friends. But there is one in particular that comes to mind today (’cause it’s her birthday!). She has been there for me through thick and thin (figuratively and physically) and has been my bestie since before the time of selfies and (gasp) even cell phones. This girl is my best friend and is the closest thing to family without actually being family.
We didn’t become friends officially until freshman year of high school but we met over the course of years playing on the same summer softball leagues and thanks to many a sleepover at mutual friends’ houses in middle school. We survived high school together: I practically lived at her house senior year, we met boys at the under-21 club downtown (even writing that makes me now cringe), we ate curly fries in the cafeteria (not with ranch because she had a serious aversion to ranch until college, which thankfully, she got over), we spent hours aimlessly driving around suburbia when we got our licenses, we spent late nights giggling into pillows in an attempt not to wake up her parents, we picked out prom dresses together and we made the rounds of graduation parties together.
The summer after graduation was epic. Oh the drama, oh the insanity. We packed it all into just a few short months before we headed off to college (she was Madison-bound and I was DC-bound). The boys, the drunken nights (when we were just discovering alcohol), Summerfest, the boys, Liz’s Summer Mix, the roadtrip to the outlet mall (living on the edge), Dirty Dancing (Havana Nights, obvi), several drunken incidents involving port-o-potties, the boys, the roadtrip to Green Bay and oh, the boys… it was the summer of our lives. We had no worries (except boys and hiding the aforementioned drunken nights) – we spent the summer lounging around and laughing.
As all summers do, Summer 2004 came to an end and it left us nervous and excited – leaving home, leaving each other and starting college. Over the course of the first two years of college, we kept in touch, planned trips home (for more drunken nights – ‘ello Captain), visited each other in our respective new cities and always found time to catch up. Then I up and moved to Paris – even farther away! But that didn’t stop us. I always came home at least once a year and she came to visit me in Paris while on her EuroTrip 2007.
Eventually technology caught up with us – gchat, whatsapp, Skype and snapchat became a form of daily communication and it is rare that we let a day, let alone a week go by without sending some form of ridiculous message between us (usually in the form of “OMG did you see what _____ posted on Facebook!?”).
This was even more necessary when she made the move to Bogota, Colombia after college. But obviously, I made a trip down just to scoop out the situation! I would travel anywhere in the world for this girl and I know the feeling is mutual!
And sure enough, when I told her I was getting married, she booked her flights, co-hosted the bachelorette party with my sister and my Paris bestie, filmed the ceremony and made sure to send it to my grandparents who couldn’t make it to Paris for our big day. (Don’t worry, I am totally going to return the favor when the day comes!)
A lot has changed in fourteen years but one thing that hasn’t is that this girl is my person – and I love her more than a fat kid loves cake… or more appropriately, more than I love cake. Happy birthday shoosh!