Between that comment and some conversations we had while visiting, I thought J needed to hear some things from me. I was going to buy a card thanking her for having Emma and me for the weekend and write it all there. But I think a more public acknowledgment is better in this case.
There are people in the world who are nasty, awful, mean characters. These people will set out to deliberately harm others, either physically or emotionally, just because it makes them feel good. And there are people who are passionate and strong and stand up for what they believe in. That may sometimes come across as mean, but it’s not meant to. J is the second type.
We were not friends in high school. We didn’t even really know who each other was. Our first contact wasn’t a good one, for reasons I won’t get into here. But ultimately, the reason behind that was the lies of a third party and a lot of misunderstanding. Not to mention that we were 17 years old at the time, and ruled by hormones and drama over anything else. But when J realized the errors, she apologized and over the last 15 years, she has more than made up for anything negative that happened. Even though she didn’t have to.
In the time I’ve known her, J has been engaged to her high school sweetheart, broken up with him and moved in with my mother, Emma and me. In time, she and D briefly reunited, which resulted in a pregnancy and a marriage that has seen its ups and downs, but from what I can see, has become the kind of marriage we all wish we had. She has three beautiful, smart, well-behaved and funny daughters. You don’t get kids like that without being a great parent.
Time and distance have meant that we didn’t see each other for almost five full years. But that happens. Life happens. We get busy and wrapped up in what we have going on and relationships with people far away take a backseat. That doesn’t mean that we forget those people or that we wouldn’t be there in a heartbeat for those people if they needed us. Ultimately, that’s what matters the most.
So, here we are, with all the years and events and tears and joys behind us. And things aren’t really so bad.