I sat on the porch that long ago summer day, drinking iced tea and visiting with my Mother.
"Don't forget your girlfriends," Mother advised, clinking the ice cubes in her glass. "No matter how much you love your husband, you are still going to need girlfriends. Remember to go places with them now and then; do things with them. And remember that girlfriends are not only friends, but sisters, daughters and other relatives too."
What a funny piece of advice, I thought. Hadn't I just gotten married? Hadn't I just joined the couple-world? I was now a married woman, for goodness sake, not a young girl who needed girlfriends. But I listened to my Mom. I kept contact with my girlfriends and made more each year. As the years tumbled by, one after another, gradually I came to understand that Mom really knew what she was talking about.
Here is what I know about Girlfriends:
Girlfriends bring casseroles and scrub your bathroom when you need help.
Girlfriends keep your children and keep your secrets.
Girlfriends give advice when you ask for it. Sometimes you take it, sometimes you don't.
Girlfriends don't always tell you that you're right, but they're usually honest.
Girlfriends still love you, even when they don't agree with your choices.
Girlfriends might send you a birthday card, but they might not. It does not matter in the least!
Girlfriends laugh with you, and you don't need canned jokes to start the laughter.
Girlfriends pull you out of jams.
Girlfriends don't keep a calendar that lets them now who hosted the other last big party!!
Girlfriends will give a party for your son or daughter when they get married or have a baby, in whichever order that comes!
Girlfriends are there for you, in an instant and when the hard times come.
Girlfriends listen when you lose a job.
Girlfriends listen when your husband strays.
Girlfriends listen when your children break your heart.
Girlfriends listen when your parents' minds and bodies fail.
Girlfriends cry with you when someone you loved dies.
My daughters, sisters, family, and friends bless my life!
When we began this adventure we had no idea of the incredible joys or sorrows that lay ahead. Nor did we know how much we would need each other.