Our differences fit. She loves to be the star and I'm way more comfortable watching from the wings and laughing! I knew what I wanted to do with my life at 12 years old and she still can't make up her mind. I tell her what I think she should do! Ha!
Sometimes our differences don't fit. She's loves a night on the town and meeting new people - I'm happy with the people I already know. I'd rather sit comfortably at home with a few people I know well. Sometimes it feels like I stay the course while she explores and wait for her to come back so I can hear the latest adventure!
Our adult years have consisted of us both trying to weather the storms of life and learn who we really are. I think it shocked us both to realize we are so different because we grew up feeling like no one in the world could be so much like ourselves. I think that's just how it is when your souls are as intertwined as ours. In the past decade we've let each other down, frustrated each other, had to forgive, had to "love anyway," and gone long periods of time without talking - not because we were mad, but because we have families and obligations and life gets in the way. And that's been scary! Sometimes it feels fragile and breakable. Sometimes I know we both worry that this amazing, unheard of bond we have could somehow break.
But it won't.
There's a picture I have in my head. It was my grandmothers funeral and I was 6 months pregnant with my youngest. I let my 8 year old come to the funeral. I kept it together until I walked up to the casket, and then I just lost it. I remember feeling so overwhelmed with grief it seemed hard to stand. Out of nowhere, arms were around me, holding me up. My best friend. And after I calmed down and sat down, I suddenly remembered my poor daughter who'd witnessed all this and I had left her by herself! I looked back and she was in my best friend's arms.
And, that's how it is. We may disagree sometimes. We may drive each other crazy here and there. It may feel like we disconnect at points along the way, but it is an unbreakable bond. "Best friend" doesn't cover it. "Cousin" doesn't do it justice. At the end of the day, when it comes down to it, it'll be her arms around me, holding me up. It'll be her heart that holds all my childhood secrets. It'll be her soul that sees mine through all the hustle and bustle of life. And, it'll be me in the audience cheering her on the loudest.
And forever and ever in the world will live the spirits of two little girls playing pretend for hours and hours together as if the rest of the world didn't exist, and time had no value. A place in our hearts where words aren't needed and laughter conquers darkness every time.