I am often in awe of people that I meet who have a best friend from when they were in elementary school…sometimes even as far back as kindergarten! I can barely remember the name of the person who I sat next to every day in my senior year homeroom class…much less keep in touch with anyone from that period of my life. And I certainly don’t have a best friend from my school age years. I was too poor to be accepted by the rich kids…and too rich to be accepted by the poor kids. Completely stuck in the middle…plus I was one ugly geek!
Things are different now, though. I’m still not one of those people who are surrounded by dozens of best friends (you know the ones I’m talking about…who invite one another to be one of 15 bridesmaids in all their weddings). I have a select few friends who I consider CLOSE FRIENDS. People who I enjoy spending my time with more than anyone else in the world. Less than five of them, I think.
There’s one such friend, who I’ll refer to as “Magnficiently Flawed” to protect her privacy (or MF for short), who especially stands out. I would, for all intents and purposes, consider her to be my best friend except for one minor problem: I’m not her best friend. No…sadly, she already has a best friend…a special someone who was in her life long before I came along into hers. And the laws of friendship dictate that in order to be considered best friends, it has to be mutual. But that didn’t deter me. It didn’t matter to me that we could never claim that coveted title of “Best Friends”. I was perfectly happy playing Second Fiddle. She was (and is) THAT awesome.
I first met MF twenty-six years ago when I was 18 years old. I took a part-time telemarketing position at a place where she had been working full time. She was 4 years older than me and barely took notice of me at the time (the ugly geek that I was). Not soon after I realized I wasn’t cut out for the cold calling business and quit. I didn’t cross paths with her after that until four years later when I got another job at that same company as a part-time appointment secretary. MF was still working there. I must have gotten less geeky and less ugly (or more mouthier) because this time I got her attention. Over a short period of time we discovered we were kindred spirits and became fast friends. Since then, she has been my greatest confidante, my biggest fan, the one who would lecture me about making wrong decisions…and the one who would help me pick up the pieces and glue me back together when I didn’t heed her advice. She’s been the one to patiently wait for me to communicate after years of deliberate isolation when I was involved in an unhealthy relationship…and the one to welcome me back with open arms without so much as blinking an eye. She’s the one directing the delivery nurse to get me my epidural when my husband was unsuccessful…and the one videotaping the very special night of my DS’s birth. She’s awed me with her ever-persistent faith in Christ and has an incredible talent for instantly pulling out the most fitting scripture to fit the circumstances. She’s the one who can make me pee my pants from laughing so hard about the most stupidest of things…and she’s the one that can bring me to tears because she is so damn eloquent and genuine and makes me feel worthy and deserving when I least feel like it. She is incredibly talented and I love to hear her sing and play her guitar. She possesses a beauty that shines from within…with a gorgeous smile to match. She is the one earthly being that makes me accountable for my actions…brutally yet lovingly so. She is the one reminding me that we are made perfect in God’s image…that we are, indeed, “perfectly flawed”. She’s the one that always, without fail, makes me feel loved even when I am most unloveable . She’s my very best friend in the whole wide world. DOH! But technically I can’t refer to her as that…because she already HAS a best friend. (aaarrrrghhh….)
So what is she then? Is she my dearest friend in the world? A soul-mate? Kindred spirit? My chocolate buddy? My very-significant-very-important-but-not-reciprocated person? No, no, no (shaking head)…there has to be a better description than that.
Then one day last year, while watching an episode of Grey’s Anatomy, my ears caught on to a phrase that completely describes my relationship with MF: She’s “My Person”. MY PERSON. Oh, I can hear the criticism already…“Your husband should be Your Person.” Well, he isn’t. He’s my husband and a darn good one. But he hasn’t had the benefit (or is it rotten luck?) to have had to deal with my escapades for the past two decades. But My Person has. And you know what? It doesn’t even matter that I’m not her person. Nor does it matter that I’ve been Second Fiddle (which some people may consider highly derogatory) because having you as My Person trumps being Second Fiddle in the biggest way.
I’ve a had a life riddled with challenges and strife mixed with an abundance of blessings. The blessings don’t come any greater than in the form of MF, My Person. Thank you, MF, for taking a chance and being one of God’s greatest blessings in this ugly geek’s life. Without you, I would not have come to this place in my life that I love and cherish so much. And that is the truth. I love growing old along side you…and continuing to make fun of our deficiencies. We may not ever be able to claim BFF (Best Friends Forever) but we can confidently claim PFF (Perfectly Flawed Forever). Love you!!!