300 WORDS: We Don't Get There Alone
My first friend was my best friend and was until she became my longest friend, which she remains.
We became friends by virtue of geography – she lived next door.
She, a year older than me, a year younger than Kathy, prettier than either one of us,
introduced me to Bruce Springsteen. I was in her wedding, she was in mine.
We have friends; we disconnect and reconnect again, as life allows.
Once, in high school, I yelled at one friend in a righteous fit of defense of another and made her cry; I was harsh, and feel perpetually sorry for that blunder.
I’ve been a friend to some who were not my friend, but never seemed to notice.
It’s hard to break up with a friend, even harder than breaking up with a lover.
Wendy made me add color to my life. Karen made me want to teach Pilates. Ginny made me see the humor of honest self-awareness.
With Dawn, I share books; with Noelynn, music. And with both, the particular joy/frustration of parenting.
Hope opens my heart to poetry; Mary Jo’s writing unravels me. And Valley makes me write – even about those things I could never ever write about.
And Kathy – if I don’t share it with her, it doesn’t seem real – whatever it may be.
No matter what we do, or who we are, we don’t get there alone. And if we are lucky, we realize that.
Oswego friends, Syracuse friends, North Carolina, school, work, life – I keep my them with me. I’ll paraphrase that ridiculously violent NRA slogan –You can have my friends when you rip them from my cold, dead hand. Because the thing that remains is how deeply I appreciate these people, and how determined I am to keep them close, regardless of life’s obstacles.
5/29/2016 04:34:01 pm
That ridiculously violent NRA slogan which maybe not actually spoken by millions of men through America's history,Has been part of the spirit that has driven men and women to make sure that you can continue to write whatever you want to write no matter how popular or unpopular. The Second Amendment is essential to the first.
Hi John DeGroff
5/29/2016 04:35:20 pm
And yes Carol is a very special woman
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I was born in Oswego, NY,
"I had always wanted to be a writer, but was impeded by the belief that to be a writer one had to be extraordinary, and I knew I wasn't. By the time I was ready to give up my academic career I had realized that while books are extraordinary, writers themselves are no more or less special than anyone else." The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield