Yesterday was April 25th. It was Amanda Maxson’s eighth birthday. It was my first love’s 36th birthday. I doubt he even knows that I know it is his birthday. I loved him almost faithfully from 5th grade to 9th, and I think he never thought about me twice. And it was Lynne Liptak’s 36th birthday, too.
Happy Birthday, Lynne! and my deepest gratitude for – can it be?- Seventeen Years of Friendship.
Here’s to your insisting on sleeping on my dorm room floor, and never complaining aloud about the fan; “they lived on treacle”; the Dreadful Silence when Bill and I suggested to your parents that you and Scott Might Just Possibly tie the knot; singing in one another’s weddings, one day less a year apart; stenciling your bedroom wall and “it really takes a year to have a baby”; driving an hour and a half from Grove City to Pittsburgh on a weeknight to have dinner together, because it really wasn’t all that far; showering and flossing my teeth late at your house so I wouldn’t have to do it when I got home; “All my dreams are always beautiful”; carrying a turkey in your suitcase to Maine; meeting President and Mrs. Bush at church; wondering if I was pregnant and you being so excited about it; pizza and fruit for dinner; the strawberry chocolate tart that I made for Scott’s birthday and wore during his party; your apartment in Dormont and ours in Mt. Lebanon; one fabulous Sunday morning at 9:15; eating double-stuff Oreos with abandon on a beach in the Hamptons; no one ever being the more perfect pregnant person than You; you and Scott living with my parents; our move to North Carolina; Caleb; Chris Thompson wearing Caleb’s sunglasses, and us laughing so hard we Fell Down; e-mailing one another with a frenzy; four-way phone calls; carrying a turkey in your suitcase to Switzerland; the Punto; the four of us sleeping in the Same Bed in Innsbruck; your delight that we were (finally) pregnant; your calling me in the hospital during The World’s Longest Labor; William; Seth; Preparation for Parenting; another trip to Long Island, this time with three children in tow; watching Bill Clinton squirm; Seinfeld; outrageously long phone conversations late into the night during which we discussed parenting methods while we scrubbed our bathrooms; conversations about when was a good time to scrub our bathrooms, and method (honestly!); Everett; my Annual Contemplation and Review; trying to understand why Everett cried; “obnoxious vegetation”; an unfinished essay about you, and Impatience; expecting a Girl!; Madelyn’s closet; a dress from Laura Ashley; Madelyn; homeschooling chats; t-ball; breezes blowing through your house in Medina; “popping in” to see Andrea- she of the perfect home; discussions of names for a girl and “do you think it’s okay for her to go by two names?”; soccer; Emma Grace; giving Emma Grace a bath and “doing” her hair; Bill losing his job; Scott leaving his job; Scott getting a job; Bill not; cell phones; Scott travelling Too Much; the move to Chicago and farewell to the Medina house; dancing at the Pirate game in Pittsburgh; Emma Grace falling into the pool; having always and knowing almost always His sweet grace and presence, staying up far too late, talking far too long, laughing oh so much; and all the Unremembered and Yet Unknown Joy.
How rich I am to know you.
Happy Birthday, Dear Friend.