Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Blackberry Jam

It is easy to get caught up in your own life, prioritizing mundane things over time with those who care about you. That's just how life is. I have had the great fortune of having a best friend, whom I grew up with for over 24 years now. There's nothing I can compare that kind of bond to. She is more than a sister to me, more than a "buddy" and more than a "best friend". I admire and respect her like no other, and I am flattered that she calls me her best friend. In fact I am relieved she does. I am surprised still that she gets choked up when she talks about how much she cares about me. Surprised that someone I adore and admire so much cares so much for me.

everyone needs someone in their life whom they can be themselves with and still be loved just the same. she may not always like everything I do, but she doesnt hold it against me. It's important as women to have nurturing relationships that support each other and provide strength in all that we face.

recently my best friend was mailed a jar of homemade blackberry jam from her brother. As I watched her open the package and realized what it was, I started crying. This one jar of jam brought back all of childhood experiences with her, riding bikes, picking blackberries, playing on the massive stone wall behind my house. Years of friendship, barbies, hair-dos and boys. Years of trust and unconditional love. Her brother had picked the berries from the same bushes and made jam, just like our mothers did - and he mailed it to her, with no card. It didnt need one.

She and I grew up across the street from each other. We both had blackberry stands, and would "compete" on price - however our road was busy enough that we could do well regardless. We also had blackberry fights! We would pluck the big juicy ones and throw them at each other, staining our clothes.

blackberries remind me of the cool summer evenings when we would twirl around in my back field, looking at the evening sky with the just-about-setting-sun. Fireflies were everywhere. Bats darted about in the twilight. The peepers and crickets and soft wet grass.

What great memories!

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