Monday, August 9, 2010

My She-lationship

Men think they invented everything. Take the Bromance, for instance. Apparently, close or best friendship needed a term coined only when men caught on to the benefits of such a relationship but didn't want their heterosexual status questioned. The film I Love You, Man demonstrates the difficulties and challenges associated with male bonding (even if it portrayed female friendships as shallow and less meaningful). For most women, close friendship comes a bit easier. There are countless possibilities as to why this is. My own personal theories on the matter relate to the ratio between word count and monosyllabic guttural noise.* And GNOs.

When I was 13 and had discovered the joys of a daily personal hygiene routine for myself but not anything more comfortable than a ratty sports bra for my newly developed breasts that just kept growing, I met this girl at church. Originally, there was a posse of we silly and over-dramatic adolescent girls. The gaggle of us dwindled as some moved away and eventually others married. By the time I was halfway through college, it was down to us.

Alice and Rookie.

And then there were two.

For eight years now we've been besties. Through lame bridesmaid dresses, lamer boyfriends, grad school, differing hobbies, those six months she crashed on an air mattress on the floor of my bedroom, a crush triangle (I wouldn't dare call it "love"), new career paths, unemployment, life catastrophes, celebrations, three apartments, failures, fights, and successes we've been there for each other. Thick and thin and all that bid-ness.

Needless to say, she's the person I know very best. If I didn't trust her so much, all the dirt she has on me would keep a girl up at night. We hang out most days of the week and still I never tire of her--even if we're roommates.

We're rare. I know this.

Some folks aren't sure which is which (I've been called Alice, she's been called Rookie). But before you start to think this is an eerie demonstration of enmeshed dysfunction, it should be noted that we actually celebrate our individuality. Allyson hates Pride & Prejudice but loves Billy Madison, for one. She is wise, filled with common sense and a knack for winnowing things down to what is most important. My head is in the clouds. She celebrates my rather geeky affinity for the written word. I revel in her deep and nuanced observations on humanity. She loves the thrill of the trauma bays in the ER and the Newborn ICU (she's a hospital social worker), I faint if someone says the word "vein". She's a Vince Vaughn/Jack Johnson kind of girl, my heart belongs to Javier Bardem/Dave Grohl.

I mention all of this because this summer marks 16 years of friendship. Sometime after seventh grade, Alice and I started this road to best friend-dom, wo-mance, whatever you want to call it. I am blessed to have a partner in crime, a sure and steady chick flick date (excepting period piece dramas), and someone to share the rent and inside jokes.

I love you, woman!
Here's to 16 years of memories!
May we have 61 more!

*(Oh, now don't be so offended, boys. I kid, I kid.)


Lildonbro said...

hmm...I like wo-mance. That's amazing that you guys are still so close after so long. All my besties eventually move away, or I move. We keep in touch, but it's just not the same.

Jen said...

I get all teary thinking about my high school best friend. She is such a treasure and gem in my life. She is single, too, and I often wish I could be there for her better as I could if we were roommates. I wouldn't trade the family life, but a true girlfriend is just the best.

Alice said...

Oh Rookie, I am glad we are friends (and my motivation isn't just because you know ALL my dirt.) In all honesty I know our friendship is rare and I feel lucky to have it.

Thanks for the post, it made me smile. Here's to at least 61 more years of friendship...if I don't drive you crazy first ;) BFF!

Wendy said...

:) AWW! You guys rock individually and together! I feel blessed to know you both.

m.a.f said...

what an absolutely gorgeous tribute to your friend and friendship itself. and women, to women to.

Libby said...

Sweet, sweet lil' tribute. Gal pals rock, especially the good through-thick-and-thin types.

P.S. I have been using "amazeballs" only in my thoughts for some time now. I was so impressed to see that you busted that out the other day. It's the most hilarious word I've heard in a long, long time. Hear, hear to "amazeballs".

Amber said...

Something to be cherished! Thank you for sharing your friendship with me when I am around. Love the late night/early morning conversations. You are both so amazing in totally different ways. Love ya both!

Stine said...

Yay, this post made me very happy. I'm glad you two are happy together.