Sarah was the first to meet me and we quickly became best buds. We played dolls and did gymnastics routines and pulled stunts at the neighborhood park. We sewed scrunchies and talked boys and swore we'd never take off our friendship necklaces. We promised we'd write and I still remember how sympathetic my brother and sister were as we left town headed for South Carolina.
I spent a week with Sarah the summer we were twelve. After that, we didn't keep in touch a ton. We wrote letters and made a few phone calls over the years.
Fast forward through high school and weddings and babies and arrive at Facebook. We reconnected about the time Sean joined the Air Force. Sarah happened to marry an Airman. I always hit up my military friends for connections wherever we're going. Sarah and her family left Ohio shortly before we arrived, but she had a connection for me. It was a connection I almost let slip through my fingers. How easy it would've been to let life get in the way.
A year later, I can't imagine my life without this family. The husbands get along, we wives get along and all eight of the kids get along. More than get along. Four of them are straight up in love. They are one of the reasons we are heartbroken to leave Ohio.
The big four go to art class together every Wednesday. The little four are usually dragged along to antique stores or coffee shops with us mamas. Friendships have been forged along the way. Kristine is like my therapist. I tell her everything. We talk about God and husbands and kids and the military. She cracks me up and is super spontaneous. She eats as much chocolate as I do and we indulge in cupcakes and coffee on a weekly basis. She's the type that will say, "SURE!!!" to bowling at the last minute and agree with me that we can totally take eight kids into a restaurant like it ain't no thang.
The first thing Felix said when Sean announced the upcoming move was, "I don't wanna go." Because of Emily. As I hugged his broken little soul, I explained, "Bud, friendships like these don't end. They change, but they don't end."
If one of these girls doesn't end up my daughter-in-law, I'll be a monkey's uncle.