So last night I was reading over at falling down is also a gift, when the phone rang, and who should it be but my friend Gem.

I was so excited to hear from her. I admit it. This is partly because I am truly one of the worst people in the world when it comes to keeping in contact. I think about the people I love daily, but it is always when I’m driving into town, lying down to go to sleep at night, or some other inconvenient time. My parents live on the East Coast and I inevitably think to call them at 8:00 (11:00 their time).

So Gem called, and I was so happy. Gem is one of the people I’ve known for the longest continuous amount of time in my life. For much of this time I’ve considered her to be my best friend. And this is not because we get together all the time and giggle about cute boys and shoes – although I think that may have happened once or twice. Come to think of it, it was usually more akin to guffaws.

And, frankly, I haven’t spoken with her in, like, five months. But, (and she would heartily disagree with me on this) that doesn’t so much matter, because when we do talk, its as though no time has passed.

You see, we have history. We have great memories together – sitting on the porch together with Aaron (Freedom) playing guitars (them) and singing Bob Dylan (all of us), while six week old, Maya contentedly cooed and nursed away in my lap. We have bad memories, too. Neither of us has always been the family centered, mama oriented gals we are now. We’ve had our share of angry betrayals and even fist fights as well as other stupid mistakes. (I’d write more, but that’s for another day and only with permission first.)

Gem watched Maya for me daily as I went to Massage School. She considers it to be her breaking in time for learning how to really be there for a kiddo. (She and Jordan now have two truly amazing and lovely daughters of their own.)

She was my Matron of Honor at my marriage to Chris. Maya was my Maid of honor and seeing them there together was a beautiful sight I will always remember. Yes, we have history.

So last night when she asked me, “Rowan, how come when it had been 5 months since we’d talked you didn’t call? Why didn’t you think to yourself, ‘Maybe Gem lost my number.’?” Well, I didn’t have a whole lot to say. “Ummm…you know me. I’m bad at that stuff…always have been…you know that.” But between you and me, I know that the reason is so much more simple. Down in my heart of hearts, I know that our friendship will always be there. No matter what changes we may go through, (from living in our vans down by the park, to Masters Degrees and second mortgages – or – living with goats and kidney disease) we will always be there for each other. She’ll always be the friend I can relate to on the most heart-felt fundamental level. And I’m not worried that that will change.

Yes, I’m going to make an effort to be a better friend…one who actually calls. I’ll even write it on my calendar if I have to. But even if I get distracted by my full life, sometimes; I’m not too worried. I know that I can pick up the phone and within a matter of a couple of sentences, we’ll be right back to guffawing over husbands and shoes.


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