When I was growing up my mom had two really good friends who both had kids about the same ages as my brothers and I. We formed our own little playgroup and grew up together. Now, many of us didn't become best friends or anything but the moms have always kept us all informed about the current info on each family. For the last few years we have gotten together once a year and it is one of those strange, uncomfortable, yet somehow fun days. So, yesterday was the day.
First of all, the reason we really started doing these get togethers is that Mary is really really ill. It actually scares me to think that a person the same age as my mom is so sick and really may not be here by next year. But I was amazed to see Mary. After hearing about her declining health and how all of the systems in her body are basically just shutting dow, to see her shocked me. She is still so much the same as always. A bit greyer and perhaps a bit slower but generally, just the same lady I have know for my whole life. And she called me "Lynnie" the whole day! Gotta love that! I so admire Bob, her husband, who is the most devoted husband that I have ever seen! He lives to cater to her needs. Jenny, their daughter that is my age was not there. Her little boy has ear infections in both ears. It is kind of strange - she seems to always miss these. And Jeff, their son, was there with his wife Annie and their two kids. It is strange to see Jeff in a father roll. He was always kind of a sick kid and just not real strong. But his kids seem to love him and he seems to be a good father.
The other family there begins with Ann. She is such a amazing woman - very earthy, a talented artist and a bit of a bohemian. What a wonderful gentle person she is. As soon as we got to her house she was giving Remi rocks from her collection that she has amassed from all over the world, sharing seashells with him from many differ dive trips, and just generally spoiling him. Her husband, Michael, is the quiet, brainy, musician. He worked for a tech firm and his job literally was to sit and think of new and different ideas. Their oldest child is Mark, my brother's best friend. My brother and Mark went to Alaska to stay in my uncle's cabin one summer and Mark left his heart there. He feel in love with Alaska. It is perfect for the part hippy/part cerebal person that he is. He went back shortly after they came home and has never left. He teaches and is a principal there now. And has recently has is first child. The mom of his son and Mark plan to get married next summer. We are thinking very seriously about going to the wedding. That would be sooo great! And Amy is their other child. Amy is this stunning natural beauty. A few years back she cut her hair so short she was almost bald and you know what? She was amazing! She lives in Puerto Rico now and is about to finish up her masters in foreign language translation. For her thesis she started to translate a text about the Cuban economy and even spent some time in Cuba. Once she is done with her masters she is thinking about splitting her time between Alaska and either Boulder or Puerto Rico.
Overall, as we sat there yesterday conversing, I was just amazed at how far we had all come and how nice it is to reconnect with old friends!