So, this week Cynthia, Ian, and Jack head west for California. I'm sad to have my friends leave, but that sadness is tempered by the fact that in four months we'll be heading west as well, and only 30 minutes apart.
Cynthia and I didn't really start out as friends. We taught together for several years and moved in similar circles (namely our respective best friend, Becky B.), but we didn't seem to click. To be truthful, I think that we irritated each other. That's what happens sometimes when you have very similar personalities.
However, everything changed last year when I brought Garrett home from Guatemala. I was a new mom with a deployed husband, and Cynthia stepped in as my experienced mom friend. Jack is eight months older than Garrett and had been home for almost a year by the time Garrett graced us with his presence. We started with trips to the park. Our friendship really clicked when she forced me to read Healthy Sleep Habits, Happy Child to help me cope with Garrett's sleep problems. Suddenly I was sleeping, Garrett was sleeping, and we were ready to have fun! Cynthia and Jack were ready and willing participants. Dinners at Mi Cabana became so frequent that our sons thought that we lived there (drive into the parking lot and the child in the back seat called the other mommy's name). Any time Cynthia asked Jack if he wanted to see Garrett and I, the standard response was "Beckie? Gar? Eat?" I think our children thought that meals meant time with friends.
Cynthia even earned herself her own moniker from my son. When Garrett started to call me "Momma" he would say it in this deep voice with his mouth turned down, Muppet style. Cynthia thought that it was funny and she would say "Momma" back to him to get him to say my name. From that point on Cynthia became "Mumma" (imagine Garrett saying it in a very deep, little kid voice), and we added the Cici though he hasn't. We pull into her neighborhood, "Mumma!" Into Mi Cabana, "Mumma!" Chick-fil-A, "Mumma, Mumma!" The park, "Mumma! Mumma! Mummaaaahhh!!!!" Still makes both of us chuckle.
Any question about how much this friend of mine means to my son? Just check out this video that Chris's dad videoed while we were in GC picking up Elena. She and Jack came over for a play date and Mick caught this private moment between the two on tape for us.
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Since Elena has come home, and Chris has deployed again, our friendship has continued to grow. We've somewhat continued our morning walks around her neighborhood, lunches at Chick-fil-A, dinners at Mi Cabana or each other's house, and MOPS meetings. Now Ian is home from deployment, and the joke is that he has become my second husband (taking care of BBQ duties for dinner, performing odd jobs around the house, etc.). Guess that's a Marine Corps wives' joke about a deployment husband.
I'm not quite sure how I'm going to fill my days with Cynthia and Jack gone. I do have to admit that moving across the country is not nearly as scary as it could be because we'll have such good friends close by. Let's just say I'm heading out of town as quickly as I can so that the void they leave behind won't be as noticeable.
So, Cynthia, Jack, Ian -- we'll miss you bunches! Expect to hear your phone ringing as I'm very glad we have free nationwide long distance so we can at least continue our once to 5 times a day conversations! See you soon!
WE LOVE YOU!