del alma: On Amigas
dicho: “Amistades que son ciertas, mantienens la puertas abiertas.”
I got a text the other day from my best friend from grade school. We hung together tightly from the 4th grade to the 10th. Our day-to-day closeness ending only because I moved to another state.
As we connected back and forth last week via tiny keyboards, I thought about the fact it has been 36 years since we met.
That’s like a million years in these modern times, isn’t it?
We stayed friends though it would have been easy to let go. There were, and are, 900 miles between us. There was no Facebook, no email back then to make it easier.
I used to spend the night at her house a lot. I was a flaca and her parents fed me a lot of Cuban food. Her mother chaperoned our group outings, took us to a teen disco in Miami called “Forest” (anybody remember that place?) and sat in the lobby with all the other mamis who clutched purses in their prim laps. Her sister tutored me in math. A lot!
It was a lifetime ago, and yet, just yesterday.
I watch my 8-year-old daughter, and see her deep love of some friends, and I hope that though her heart will break sometime, though friendships will be lost to time and fall outs, she’ll have old friends forever. The kind who will know her before there were boys, babies and crows feet. And way before las canas.
It’s almost Valentine’s Day. I tell my husband I love him everyday. But, I’m feeling el deseo to tell my amigas, que las quiero mucho.
I believe it’s our amigas de la vida who most often get us, know us, love us in the most intimate way. Some of the moments that shine and pop the most in my heart were moments made with girlfriends.
And amen, we all need real friends who knew us “when” and “before.”
And still love us.
Have you told an amiga lately how much you love her?
“Friendship is a strong and habitual inclination in two persons to promote the good and happiness of one another.” –Eustace Budgell