It’s been so long since I posted, I forgot what I wrote about last!
We had a great family vacation. It was just the four of us, a small cabin on a lake in Pa, right on the Appalachian Trail. We had some great day-hikes, with afternoons floating in the lake, cooling off. Hiking with teenagers is a different sort of experience, (cue stoic silence) esp after we got to the view-the-scenic moment and spotted the snakes.
I guess that is a lie. I didn’t spot the snakes. Mr. Cub Scout Leader Nature Guy, along with 12 10-year old boys, came swarming up onto the cliff and pointed out the rattlesnake dozing in the sunshine under a ledge, curled up with a copperhead snake. I'm sure their parents didn't approve...
My feet floated up to my ears without any conscious effort. My daughter was equally thrilled. Right about then, hottie college student ambled by. My daughter thought he was real eye candy until he leaned over the ledge and hauled up a ten foot black snake for the cub scouts to coo over.
After that, our kids were done hiking. They opted to sleep in mornings so Mr. Wonderful and I hiked alone. Boy Howdie was I careful where I put my feet.
Still, we had fun. It’s nice to get away from regular life.
In other news of myselfness - my dear friend moved to Thailand. I am really going to miss her.
Sometimes people come into my world at life-defining moments. I think of them as stealth gifts.
I’ve lived here all my life and have three girlfriends for 40 odd years now. Those women know more about me than Mr. Wonderful ever needs to know.
I also have a few friends from my ABC and CNN days that have transcended the “work friends category” to become, well, good friends.
Finding at home Moms was harder. Most women work now, so being home with kids was isolating and lonely. But I found Miss Peg. Or maybe she found me.
I clearly remember meeting her, 17+ years ago. She was wearing a white T-shirt that said READ. Her son and my daughter went to the same nursery school. We would arrive at the same time to pick them up from their 9a-12n incarcerations.
We’d chat while the kids did the random running and screaming thing that 4 year olds do. I was enormously pregnant; she had a second son who was about a year old. They were freshly back from an overseas posting, as her husband works at the State Dept.
We were friendly. It might have never progressed except – one day, right as I was driving to nursery school (late) to pick up my daughter, my water broke. Can we stop for a round of ICK, please?
Luckily I had taken to sitting on a towel on top of a hefty trash bag, because it was a new car and I had heard a horror story at the midwife’s. I got to the nursery school, spotted Miss Peg, rolled my window down and said “Can you bring my daughter out here? My water broke and I’m embarrassed to get out of the car.”
Unflappable Peg was right on it – and after that we were true friends. We had Mom fun, going to the gym, taking our kids to the park, sharing recipies. She has a great sense of humor and is really smart.
Once, when the kids were particularly irritating, we locked them out of the house and drank and coffee with a shot of brandy. “Just play in the yard,” we told them. It felt great to get a buzz on at 4p. By dinner we felt iffy and neither of us could sleep that night.
Our husbands get along great, so we could do a lot of joint family things together over the years. Our friendship thrived with letters and then email when they were posted to New Zealand. When they returned it was as if they never left. We have a tradition of getting the families together on Christmas and 4th of July.
It comes down to Miss Peg and me. We made the Journey of Motherhood together – and survived to tell the tale. Lots of at-home Moms profess to be miserable. We felt lucky, like we had the greatest gig ever.
Once the kids were in school, we set aside Thursdays to do something together for a few hours. Sometimes a movie, out to lunch, a museum, whatever. Often, I’d stop for coffee after the gym so we could talk about what we were reading.
Miss Peg left last week for Thailand. Her husband’s posting will last at least three years with a possible “onward” assignment from there; maybe China or some equally exotic locale. I’m saving my pennies for a visit.
We went out to lunch the last day she was here. We had agreed that we’d say “I’ll see you soon” instead of “goodbye.” Then we talked about books, politics, religion, the nature of happiness and the time my daughter stuck Rice-a-Roni up her nose.
I think the effort put into friendships is rewarded enormously. Miss Peg will ALWAYS be worth the effort.