Monday, August 20, 2012

Agree To Agree

Deb: Barb and I, upon the founding of this blog, claimed in our tagline that we were different women, with different husbands and different opinions. We are different women with different husbands, to be sure. We have never crossed that line. Although those of you who are in the know are aware that during a ski trip some years back, I did accidentally fondle Barb’s husband Phil with both my husband and all our children looking on. Desirous of my plan to be a stealth fondler, I acted in haste and paid the price. For those of you not in the know, lest I seem like a middle-aged Angelina, I thought the area I was tapping into belonged to my own legal husband. Thank heaven the kids were old enough to laugh with us!

Riffing off Phil’s crotch (thank you Phil), and back to Barb and I, we have lately begun to question the validity of our tagline. The area we have clearly failed at, the area in which we have let you down, dear readers, is the claim that we have “different opinions”. Because we mostly don’t. And we don’t “don’t” on purpose. We simply put our opinions out there and, as it turns out, most of the time, we agree ... with each other anyway. We sure didn’t plan it that way, but as it turns out ... we agree. After two-and-a-half years blogging, this is becoming painfully clear. Or in this case, happily clear. We are not good cop bad cop, nor are we Betty and Veronica. We are kind of two sides of the same coin. Actually we are not really two sides. We are both crammed into “heads”, leaving the blog without a “tails”.  A great example of this is that Barbara thought it was hilarious that I mistook her husband for mine on that fateful grabby ski trip. See? We cannot not agree!

So here’s the question. Why? What is it? We come from different backgrounds and have a big gap in age. Born 9 years and one day apart. But we are sister thinkers. Sister feelers. Fellow Cancerians.  We are not alike in outward personality at all. But wow, we are SO alike in our deep chocolaty centres.

Before writing this post, I went through our relationship in my mind, fast forwarding and rewinding, and what I found was that we have indeed disagreed in the course of our friendship. The reason it doesn’t stand out as disagreement is that it is dealt with so swiftly and fairly that it evaporates almost immediately. Both of us have been on the receiving end of disrespect in our individual work environments in the past.  Both of us are people-pleasing, non-confrontational gals. So when we do disagree about a thought or a direction, we really truly go as far as we can to see the other person’s point of view. We agreed at the beginning of our working relationship that we would always go a mile in each direction of two ideas until we came to the outcome of each. Then we would examine them equally and let the winning idea present itself on merit. And it always has. Every time we have done that exercise we have both jumped on the winning idea no matter which of us was the instigator. I think that’s how we treat our friendship too. We are always there to bail the other out no matter what. We never seek to blame, as we are too busy seeking solutions. Are we lucky? Yes, we are. But, like our marriages, we work at it. Because the friendship is worth it.

Here are some things I would like to disagree with Barb on. I would like to disagree if she didn’t want to travel with me. I would love to disagree if she didn’t want to write with me. I would like to disagree if she ever says we should stop being friends.

So we agree to agree. But you can feel free to agree to agree, or agree to disagree, or just disagree. I’m fine with that. Apparently, we both are.  And for our part, maybe once a month we should get all in each other’s faces. Hmmmm ... no, we’d just end up crying! Or maybe we should change our tagline because we are clearly not living up to our claim:

different ages, different husbands, different underwear”

Can’t argue that!

Barbara: Oh, Deb, I am so so glad you finally addressed this little conundrum of ours. And, man, do I LOVE the way you’ve addressed it. Every thought, every discovery, every observation you’ve made here mirrors my own feelings (what I mean by that is: I hadn’t yet fully formulated all these thoughts, discoveries and observations, but I WISH I had, and IF I had, I’d only dare hope to express them as adorably and wonderfully as you). Okay, I’m agreeing with her (aka: openly loving her) again, aren’t I?

I have to emphasize Deb’s point that when we started blogging we really truly imagined we would disagree more—not for the sake of it, but by virtue of the fact that we were—on paper—quite different. And also for the sake of really showing the “two sides of the coin” thing. Looking back, I find it hilarious that we (pretty much) always agree. I love the way you’ve expressed the “why” of it here, Deb, and I (quite naturally!) agree with all your points. The double irony is that we’ve gathered an amazing group of like-minded souls here that often (but not always) agree too!

I do think it makes TMA a lovely, welcoming place. BUT I’d also like to reiterate that we are always open to differing opinions, especially because we talk here about the things that affect us and, by doing so in an open and vulnerable way, we also get to revel in the tweaks and shifts that inevitably come from getting a kaleidoscope of different reactions from all of you.

As much as I am definitely a “people-pleaser”, one of the best lessons I’ve learned from this experience is how to own my own opinions, even if they’re different—and, yes, even if they’re the same. For me, not worrying about pleasing people all the time (because I now truly understand that I can’t) and seeing my true heart for what it is has been a HUGE personal development. Would it be easier if everyone, including you, Deb, always agreed with me? Sure. But I still love that even the same opinions have different variations, and even the different opinions that are expressed here are done so with loving care and compassion. It has—believe it or not—made me less fearful and more patient with the many utterly different opinions out there and everywhere.

As for your new tagline, Deb—yup, our underwear is definitely, always, and 100% different!

58 comments:

  1. “different ages, different husbands, different underwear”
    Now thats something we can definitely believe!

    Firstly, I hope you girls had fun on your trip last week!
    And Finally!! I kept waiting for this post...And you know I agree with you girls.. ALL.THE.TIMEEE!!!! I love it! Theres so much fun to think about something and then read the EXACT same thing on a BLOG!!! How AWESOME is that! Sometimes the posts have perfect timing and Its like I'm really like reading my own thoughts...its that uncanny!
    And Barb is right. Even when people have different opinions..and ofcourse when they respect our opinions...the convos get more interesting! Its something different and new! I keep meeting like minded people too, but the once with different opinions are my besties! I mean Ive got a friend who watches the movie "SAW" to relax himself...FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!


    And.....I would disagree too if either of you would stop being friends with me....NAAAA-AAAH! I'm coming there next year.....You cant get rid of me now...TOO LATE! Sooner or Later I'LL FIND YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. A lot of people comment that the timing of certain posts is weirdly in synch with something going on in their lives. I find that kind of stuff so amazing -- it really makes me feel this connection between us! I love what you say here, Shalaka, about your friends being so different from you -- a fascinating experience, isn't it?!

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    2. I know, yes! Its so so amazing. In fact My friend who's moving to Canada with me is so much like me...IDK if we have any difference in our opinions. Maybe one. I LOVE DAN BROWN..she Doesnt :D And Well she loves cooking...and I dont. Apart from that!!! Everything is the same...! Different underwear though XD

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    3. Saw to relax for crying out loud! Loved that sentence Shalaka! And Shalaka I can relate. Barb and I are both home gals as is the profile for Cancerians but she is more the cook and I am more the decorator!

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    4. YES!!!! Same here...LOVE DECORATING! Cooking...meeh.. PERFECT TIMING....AGAIN! Thats what I'm talking about :D Ha! LOVE IT....I'm so glad I found you girls! :)

      (*fingers crossed* Hoping to find a soulmate who cooks too!)

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  2. Yes, I will agree with the different ages and different husbands. But, I wouldn't be too hasty in losing the "different opinions".

    Granted, you two frequently agree on subjects. But, there are years of shared experiences, mutual admiration and respect which ultimately led you to the trough of friendship. And, through your musings/writings/art, you invite others to share in your relationship. And, as a regular reader, I am drawn in by an intangible recognition of "kindred spirits".

    For me, the "different opinions" becomes important when what you say/write causes me to question my own perceptions, and to challenge me to try to formulate and express my opinions. I am not a writer (see "trough of friendship" as an example of non-writing ability). I don't even play a writer on TV.

    But, do I always agree with you? No. Do I always comment when I don't agree with you? No. This is "your house". When I do try to write, I feel like my comments can be misinterpreted as an attack, and then I don't publish them (because, dangnabit, I want to please everyone, and not upset anyone. Dang you, self-esteem).

    But, through these different opinions - this self-questioning - that this dialogue triggers, it helps me to grow as a person.

    (But, I could be talking out my buttocks here, and this weekend's exposure to sunlight could have melted a few circuits... :D)...

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    1. Hilarious, Jo! Glad to read you've had some nice weather :) As for your comment about not posting when you don't agree with us, I've noticed that most people do a lot of erming and ohing when they don't agree with us, so nervous lest their remarks be taken in the wrong way. There's a whole post just in that, methinks. Do we risk hurting someone's feelings by openly not agreeing with them (and in turn being misunderstood ourselves), or do we just speak up anyway??? So far, I have to say that, except for a few knee-jerk voices (you guys remember), most of our disagreements have been well played and really interesting. As we said (or meant to say) we've learned so much from the different perspectives offered here to our conundrums. (and "trough of friendship" has a certain earthy, honest ring to it, Jo!)

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    2. Wow this has really opened up the possibility for me that there are more times that you guys disagree with us then I thought. I truly wish you would all speak up and give us other points of view. A few times I have out and out asked for advise and comments and have not only gotten them in spades but loved it. To your point Jo, it is really about how we disagree, not the disagreeing itself, right?

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    3. Deb, exactly. If/when there is disagreement, the discussion doesn't devolve into nasty attacks. It becomes more of a "Have you considered this?" which expands the discussion. And, you start a discussion because you want feedback, not to "win" it.

      For not commenting when I don't agree, I feel I need to expand a bit on that. Yes, I feel things can be misinterpreted, so I don't publish. Part of that is my "needs further development" self-esteem. A major part of that has to do with the reality of living with disabilities - be it my son's autism, or my son's, husband's or my mental health challenges. I find myself asking "Do I have the energy for follow up on that point?" Most of the time, I don't, so I just don't start. And, I hope that makes some sense.

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    4. Jo,
      This line hit home for me. "I find myself asking "Do I have the energy for follow up on that point?" Most of the time, I don't, so I just don't start." I've had that same thought a time or two here and there. Sometimes the mind can get a bit... befuddled...when trying to state one's position in a diplomatic way. I've tied my brain in knots on occasion and then just deleted the whole response I'd just written. Just tiring.

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    5. Yeah, I do appreciate this take on it too, ya know. The problem with "different opinions" is there is no shorthand. You gotta explain and that can be a bit of a spiral. I do get that. I guess it' must be really worth it to feel like you want to enter the fray. That said, Jo, we welcome any and all of your opinions, especially, since, like Dawn here, you have such a way with words.

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  3. I love your thoughtfulness to include all ideas and if on some blogs we diverge that is great. It leads to a lively discussion. Now if you talked politics and religion all the time I am sure you would get different opinions but, I like that you are much more diverse than that and it leads to more productive conversations and maybe even changes others thought processes to see your wild and wacky ideas. Plus you make us think in such interesting ways. Keep on keeping on.

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    1. Thank you, Madge. I couldn't agree more ;) And by that I mean, I love the "productive conversations" and the "wild and wacky ideas" I might not otherwise have imagined. We'll keep going if you guys keep going.

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  4. I agree Madge and you bring up an interesting point. We have not gone there as I feel that sometimes people deepest beliefs are so dear to them that I don't want to shatter anyone.

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  5. Interesting post today...has some gears turning in my head. I can relate to this a lot, especially being a twin. A really big common misconception that people assume about twins is that we are the same. Exactly the same. As in EVERYTHING is the same about us. But it's so not true. Sure Holly and I may look alike but once you get to know us people realize we are very very different people. Some differences are obvious, others not so much.

    Sometimes I think that it's ok to have the same opinions on some things but differing ones on other things. Can't remember what else I was going to write...cats are driving me nuts @__@ oy vey

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    1. Oh, Kelly, I love a good mid-tangent cat-diversion! I can totally see how people might assume "identical twin, identical opinions". Thanks for setting the record straight. (hope the cats have calmed down :) )

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  6. My fraternal twin grandsons could not be further apart. I like to think of them as two separate eggs just sharing a spot. Then once they are out it is their difference that makes them so cute. They do have twin stuff going on though. I also have BFF's that are identical and they only look alike but their thinking is totally different yet, the same. Same same but different is a phrase I love to say.

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  7. My problem is that I can agree with pretty much everyone. Well maybe not fully agree but I understand their point of view. One of my friends said that I always have an answer and never in the 7 years that she has known me has she heard me say I don't know. Sometimes it is very difficult when you have a friend that disagrees with you all the time. She disagrees but then later might agree with what I said but says the thing as her own, if you know what I mean. I like when i don't have to use extra energy disagreeing.

    Btw. August is good month to be born. ;)

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    1. Yep...August is the BEST MONTH...and Leos are AWESOME!

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    2. Indeed leos are awesome! I think that this is a good time to confess that today I turned 30...

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    3. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!! I turned 20 on the 16th!!

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    4. I remember :) Happy late birthday to you!

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    5. Souzan Rezai from Vancouver, BCAugust 20, 2012 at 2:59 PM

      Hi Kasku!
      In the spirit of today's post, I really wanted to reply to your comment about your birthday. Why is it a confession? Is turning 30 a crime?

      I so have no intention of being cheeky, and am so earnestly sincere when I say this, as it is an important issue to me; the issue of "shame" in aging. I struggle with my mum about it, because she is very sensitive when it comes to her age, and it just is so hard for me to support. I respect it, I try to 'agree to disagree' and just respect her wishes, but as someone (like everyone) who has watched friends and family not get to turn 30, or 18, or 50, or 85, I just find it so hard to attach this negativity to age. I want to abolish it. It's hard for me to write this, to think of all these people and know that I myself am just one, too. I can only hope I get to turn 30--it's life, not a guarantee.
      So happy birthday, Kasku! And, congratulations. <3

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    6. Happy birthday Kasku, wear your 30 proud! Happy belated to you to Shalaka!

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    7. Souzan: Turning anything is not a crime. I am not ashamed of my age or getting older. The thing with me is that I rarely tell anyone when my bday is. I rarely celebrate. To me it is just another day. Like today I did absolutely nothing. Yesterday we celebrated my friend, but today we just read some books and book a late check out for tomorrow. Many of my friends say that now they are 25 ten more years. Oh, well I will be 31 and doing nothing this time next year. I have fought for my years and I stand proud behind them. You wouldn't be you without all your years :-D Thank you for your b'day wishes!

      Erin : Thank you!

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    8. Happy birthday! 30 is a great age. I turned 34 on the 13th so I've got four years on you. :) Leos unite!

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    9. Happy Birthday, Kasku!! Hope you have a lovely one!!

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    10. Happy birthday, Kasku!!!!! Deb and I were both out of commission today (she was away on a charity event and I was hosting family from France!), but please know that we were thinking of you!!!

      Souzan, your post was so endearing -- I love your thoughts on being positive about aging. We are all about the celebrating of each new year here.

      Kasku, I know you prefer to keep things "under wraps" so I truly truly appreciate you "coming out" to us today. See -- I woulda bought you a birthday cake or something. Maybe it's time to try a gentle celebration of you??? Or do you ...disagree??? :) xoxo

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    11. Roz: Thank you. Wohoo, another Leo. My friend and brother are 34 too. Brother's bday was on the 18th. My sister's 15th. :)

      Steph : Thank you.

      Barb: Thank you. When I was in Florida, I actually was bought a bday cake. :) I was able to keep my day hidden quite well, but it was discovered when someone understood how we put the dates :) If I ever am there when it is my bday, I'll promise to through a party (with selfmade cake) ;)

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  8. Yes! I was able to post. So yes as it has been mentioned earlier, you can agree and we will do the disagreeing if it is needed. :)

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  9. What a great thought provoking post! I missed all last week as I was away in BC at my sister's reunion (I'll catch up) But this is very timely. We sisters all couldn't be more different and opinions were flying in BC last week. I must say that I agree with a lot of what Jo said today. Sometimes it just is easier to agree or keep quiet and perhaps revisit the issue when I have more energy. I find the energy of this blog to be delightful. I think there is a healthy amount of different opinions and a healthy amount of "like-mindedness". I think of you Barb, and Deb, like that and that is what is so fresh and interesting. I believe you are both strong women, not afraid and comfortable within yourselves to be different and say so, and yet you are so similar in that you search for the new thoughts constantly and try them out on each other and us. And we have the privilege of watching it evolve. You have created a blog that is growing in strength and "like-mindedness", is respectful, but not afraid to speak out and learn from each other. What a great thing!! I am so glad I found you!!

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    1. This is beautiful, Jo! Thank you. And, boy, are we all glad you found us too!!

      And PS the dynamic between sisters is very in keeping with this theme, as that closeness can be both a bane and a boon, right? Agreeing and disagreeing is the heart and soul of sisterdom.

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  10. Souzan Rezai from Vancouver, BCAugust 20, 2012 at 2:13 PM

    This was so interesting to read. I myself often have a very, very different opinion than my circle of close friends-- tending almost always to boil down to the fact that I somehow found a group of inherently non-confrontational people, and I am completely confrontational. This doesn't mean I like to start fights and get all up in peoples grill (or roasting pan, or slow cooker, or whatever), but that I always want to address a 'tension'; I want to confront things discuss them, understand them, and-hopefully- resolve them. I don't even think 'tension' is always bad tension, I find things that are amazing come with a certain tension, the tension that pulls you to it, makes you want to get closer. I want to confront that, too, and revel in it.

    I do feel...alien...in this way; even when I first responded here I felt slightly...unnecessary? In posting an opinion, partly cause holy goodness you all seem to know each other personally- like, literally in person, and I kinda wandered in going "...party?? PARTY!!!" but it's that tension again; I really cared about the post (The too old to be telling your stories)and needed to confront that feeling, so I shared. And then everyone is just so bloody nice here, who would leave?

    No. I really won't leave. I want to stay and hope that I get to grow to the point with my friends that I can cop a feel on their husbands, and be so lovely and close and warm that we find it hella funny. I'm taking notes here, ladies. So thanks ;)

    p.s. It's so great that you posted this, cause as a newbie I admit I had read the tagline and was internally going "So...when do they disagree...?"

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    1. Oh, I felt "unnecessary" when I first began posting. Some days, I still feel like that.

      But, what I'm slowly realizing (and understanding and truly beginning to appreciate) is the atmosphere that Barb and Deb have created here. The atmosphere is like a dinner party with close friends; the wine is flowing freely, and no one is falling down drunk. :) This place is a place where you can celebrate the small accomplishments and find support for the larger battles.

      Now, to our hosts, Deb and Barb, a heartfelt thanks! :)

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    2. Souzan
      Now I'm really glad I did the blog about the music. I'm glad you wanted to share your enthusiasm. Thanks so much for joining in!

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    3. Souzan, that amazed me too! How quickly we all became intimate and comfortable -- because it has evolved for Deb and I much as you describe for yourself. Awkwardness became "party" -- lovely "dinner party" as Jo describes -- so very quickly. Because we DON'T know each other in real life, but we do. Because we are reveling in the honesty. Kinda like fondling other husbands in front of everyone :) We are so so so glad you've all decided to stay and "drink" with us.

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  11. How about rather than two different opinions; two different perspectives? You may often reach the same conclusions but you still took two very different paths to get there.
    Look at me trying to be all philosophical....sheesh....Here's something I know of a little bettter, accidental gropings! My husbands best friend got what amounts to an accidental lap dance from me once. We had our balcony doors open and to keep little ones off we had pushed the couch against the doors. Well I atttempted to climb over the couch to talk to friends who were outside and being both a clutz and a little tipsy fell right into this friends lap instead. Still a running joke a decade or so on that never fails to turn me red!

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    1. Oh, soooo funny, Erin! And I love your philosophical turn because that's a perfect way to describe the process: "different perspectives".
      ...Hmmmm, that's not quite as funny as "different underwear" :)

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  12. Ok I know what I want to say but now just need to figure out how to phrase it.....
    I guess I think I want to say...
    Even when someone disagrees we all just agree to disageee (still agreeing...see) So rarely do we ever just leave it at disagreeing right? It still sounded better in my head.......
    But on a side note I am guilty of always stating my disclaimer before my opinion. Which I guess I want to stop doing so much because I am becomming much more trusting of you guys. Crazy how much you all here accept everything. I love how much of a loving family we all are here : )

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    1. Me too, Kelly! So love that.

      And I think your turn of phrase sounds absolutely perfect. How could it sound better than that?!

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  13. I love this post. You two are amazing!
    Even though the two of you have similar opinions, you each bring something different to the conversation. That's the important part.
    Hope you had a great trip!

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    1. Hey, I missed the trip thing.....where'd you go?

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    2. And then, Steph, you guys bring something else again!

      Jo, the trip was a girls' retreat to a farm for three days last week. It was heaven (lots of delicious food and drink and long gab-fests). And we had guest-bloggers fill in for us here. Which was also amazing!

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  14. Different underwear is very important. :P

    I agree! :D Agreeing on important things is nice but disagreement is far more interesting (as long as it's constructive). My husband and I agree on most things, but I do love having deep conversations when we happen to differ on something. Seeing a matter from someone else's point of view is so interesting and frequently enlightening, opening my eyes to a different way of thinking that I hadn't previously considered. As long as it's handled with love and respect rather than anger and stubbornness, disagreement keeps relationships interesting.

    I sometimes hesitate to disagree in some situations, though, like when I don't know the person or people very well - I'm shy at the best of times! But I'll generally speak up if I feel very strongly about something, just to offer my point of view for their consideration.

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    1. I do really love a good debate. But you do need time and, as Jo said up there, a certain kind of energy. But if you do have both, man, it can be thrilling.

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  15. One of you two should try to find a subject to throw the other one off and see her response ^-^

    Also, i hope you had a fun trip last week!

    P.S. The story about Deb accidentally fondling Phil is always hilarious :)

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    1. Garrett, that story still makes me laugh hysterically (yes, even to myself).

      And I think we should consider taking your advice under advisement :) (can you imagine?!)

      The trip was amazing, thanks for asking!

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  16. If I had any doubts about my willingness to disagree and be public about it, they were washed away by Rigel's post last week.
    I try to live by a "Live and let live" sort of policy, because it keeps me from killing people sometimes. But bring up a discussion about religion and I can't help but comment, because my views are different from some of the responders here. And some aren't (Hi, Kelly from NJ!), and I like finding a kindred spirit amongst the crowd.

    I've written comments, deleted them, and rewritten them before ever posting them, worrying about how they sound and if they make sense. Now I'm pretty comfortable in the knowledge that you know I'm not trying to come at you with a machete, just voicing a different view.

    Perhaps "different views," instead of "different opinions" would be a better phrase. Here's the best way I can explain it:

    Put your hands together, palm to palm, and turn your hands so that you see only the back of one of your hands. Now, what do you see? That's your view. But if someone is sitting across from you, looking at the back of your other hand, they may see your wedding band, a band-aid, or something else. A different view. You're both looking at what you thought was the same thing, yet they're different enough to make things interesting.

    I know there are things I've learned reading your blog, and been occasionally "annoyed" at what's come up. I know sometimes it's because of my issues, but sometimes it's not. Subtle, I am not, but I'm finally starting to learn to walk in, not STOMP in, to disagree.

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  17. I also have to mention a "not my blog, not my rules" guideline that I go by. Otherwise, stomping could ensue.

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    1. Dawn, I actually truly admire your flair during the few times you've decided to share a "different opinion" here. You have taught me a lot about how to handle that in a thoughtful but still strong way. Your explanation with the hands is BRILLIANT! And your comment about the "machete" so mirrors Deb's philosophy of "before you get upset, take a moment to consider the intention" -- did they mean to hurt you, or did they do it accidentally?

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    2. Barb, I agree with everything you just said. ;) Thanks! And I'm happy I can teach you something, too, 'cause I'm learning lots about friendship here, too. oxox

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  18. hi guys, have just spent the morning reading all of your comments and loving them! Loving the honesty and hoping that from now on, you will feel free to disagree even if Barb and I do not. It was the second annual Pete Donaldson classic yesterday in Stratford Ontario in honour and in memory of our dear darling departed friend Pete who left us a year and a half ago on January 8th. It was a perfect day on the course and a great fundraising dinner. Thanks to Barbara for doing the bloggiesitting for me. And thanks to all of you for your honest warm answers.xo

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  19. I think there is a difference between "different opinions", and "disagreement".
    Disagreement seems so negative. As if you don't want to accept a person's opinion. Disagreement means that there cannot be a discussion, because you say no.

    To have a different opinion is so much more interesting. And it makes the world more colourful, and yourself more open-minded. You never stop thinking and learning and collecting. And I think a different opinion does not mean you disagree...it's just the way you look at something.

    And I'm glad for the many interesting topics you shared with us. =)

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  20. I think it's so important that people get comfortable about disagreeing or liking different things than the people around them. Despite a lot of common ground, we are all individuals and we each have a unique mind to express. If we all just try to agree, we can create a kind of mono-culture. As Becki is saying, this world is so rich and colourful, it is a shame to limit the expression of huge variations of thought and preference.

    Sometimes I have had sad experiences in friendships where disagreement wasn't an easy fluid thing. Ideally, we can be friends with people we have nothing in common with but our humanity.

    Julie

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  21. When I first read this I thought it was very humorous and very sweet. Then I'm ashamed to admit I was a little jealous. You have a very special friendship as I'm sure you both know that has endured the years. It is the kind of relationship I have longed for and craved for many years but have never been able to obtain. The lack of such a friendship is no one's fault but my own. My own inability to trust, to let the walls down and extend a hand. Now in my fifties I realize it's too late to form those kinds of friendships but I'm always in awe and admire those that have them. Oh how I could use one now with my son living in Vegas now for less than a week. The pain I feel in missing him is almost physical. And then starting college the next day in a world full of strangers only to come home to an empty quiet house. I so wish I had someone to tell about my day and such. But now there are only the animals to listen and none of them (not even the bird) reply.

    If you do have those special friendships, cherish them because they are very precious as you two know. Thank you for letting me experience the wonder of it vicariously through you! XOXOXO

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  22. To Mary:

    The fifties are such a hugely life-altering experience--or they can be. I just want to say that I firmly believe it's never too late. For example, a woman I know that is usually self-serving and callous to other people gave my husband some garden produce the other day. This is a sign of something, maybe her desire to love and be loved. Her life can start improving now.

    Anyone's life can admit more love and caring, once the tiniest efforts are made. I understand about your son as I also have a son who has gone away to college. I joined a choir to help me when I miss him too much.

    Julie

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