I know that older people know more than younger people and that I know much more about life today than I did even 10 years ago, but I never realized that I would continue to learn so much each year. For example, I've always known that you're always going to have dear, old friends. I've always known that some friendships die for whatever reason, too. However, this year, I've learned that a friendship that dies (one that you might never expect to know again) might just have stubborn enough roots to hold on fast and come back to life one day.
Thirteen years ago, we lived in Webster, New York for about a year. While there, I met a woman with whom I felt an immediate connection. She was a real character; funny, creative, and loving, with kids a little older than mine. We met at a Teddy Bear Picnic at the local library. Kandee and I had a lot in common, and we were both frugal. (In fact, Kandee and I shared a subscription to The Tightwad Gazette!!) We shared many fun times as moms and as women; some which I hope she will never share on her blog (and remember, Kandee; a true friend would not!)
Kendall was born in Webster, and just three months later, Mr.4444 lost his job. We had a new house, a new baby, and no job for three months; it was a trying time. During that period, I felt Kandee drifting away. One day, she admitted that she was letting the friendship go because she knew we would be moving away. I was surprised and disappointed, but I appreciated her honesty. Just as a neglected plant will whither and die, so will a friendship. Distracted by our circumstances, I let the watering can rust and moved on to another garden, when Mr.4444 was blessed with a job that allowed us to move back home, to Wisconsin.
Flash-forward 12 years. I don't remember how it happened; just that I learned that Kandee had kept the same email address all that time, and we exchanged a Christmas card last year. Kandee called me up out of the blue one day, and we talked and talked, and talked. It was as if little time had passed. Kandee shared that during the time we had been apart, she had lost her sister to breast cancer, fought and won her own battle with breast cancer, and lost each of her parents. When it was all over, Kandee and her husband picked up and decided life that life realy is too short; they moved to California, just because they could.
When Kendall and I went to California this summer, it was Kandee who invited us to stay with her and her family. During that time, our friendship deepened and has continued. She is one of the most sweet (you might not know it from her sense of humor), generous (yes, even though she has tightwad roots), and loving person I have met. Kandee, you are dear to me; you're the sister God forgot to give me. And today, I wish you the happiest birthday ever.
Will you please visit Kandee to wish her a happy birthday? I know she'd love the "watering."
And don't worry about fertilizer; she's got plenty of B.S. (Just Kidding!! Kandee; I couldn't resist!!)
[Update: Kandee was silly enough to think I could be trusted with her Username and Password for her blog a while back. Since she is still out of town (I think), I hijacked her blog and am throwing a Surprise Party! I even added music; hey, she's been asking me to help her do that...) Please do pop over and leave your regards; she is going to LOVE it!]