This Month's Topic: Focus on Finance

My Forever Friends

It was a recipe for disaster: My husband, dad and brothers-in-law left for a ski trip to Vail Wednesday morning (yes, the morning of New Year’s Eve) and weren’t coming home until Sunday. My sisters and I were gearing up for a long five days (and a long four nights) with our very young children alone.

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Our New Year’s Eve “party”

We were determined to do things together, so we wouldn’t feel lonely and crazy from a lack of adult interaction, but we were scared of what that might look like. Four adults (my mom graciously offered to help anyone and everyone who needed it) and six kids 4 and under promised to ruin any chance for a meaningful conversation or, really, any chance for a second without someone screaming.

Now, though, roughly 24 hours before the guys come home, I’m surprised to discover that while, yes, someone has always been screaming, opportunities for conversation haven’t been lacking.

My mom and sisters and I have always been close. I don’t know if it’s because my mom only had girls, my sisters and I are close in age or some unknown variable I’ve yet to discover, but when we’re together, it’s like the song, “We don’t even have to try, it’s always a good time.” Corny, but true.

If we’re out together without the kids on a girls’ trip or girls’ dinner – trust me, we snuck in a girls’ dinner before the guys left and are already planning a summer girls’ trip to NYC to make up for this Vail bull**** – we commiserate with one another, we bare our souls, and we laugh. A lot.

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Another New Year’s Eve “party” picture

When we’re with the kids and in the thick of it, and one of us is yelling to the other to help because a kid just sneezed and has green snot dripping down her face, someone’s kid is screaming because her mom just walked out of the room (how dare she?), or someone’s kid just barreled into another kid and stood up, unfazed, asking, “Why is she crying?,” we laugh. A lot.

You might think it’s because if you don’t laugh you might cry, and that’s true to some extent, but, really, we sincerely enjoy one another’s company. We can say anything without worrying about whether someone’s judging us (because they are, just loudly and jokingly), we know everything about one another – the good, the bad and the ugly – and we can quote movie lines until the cows come home and laugh just as hard each time.

I’m not saying there aren’t times when too much togetherness causes some harsh words or hurt feelings, but those times are swept under the rug, forgiven and forgotten.

These past few days, we’ve complained, we’ve chased kids, we’ve yelled at kids, we’ve cried some ourselves, we’ve discussed hard-to-discuss topics about potential problems with our children, and we’ve still managed to laugh. Because if you can’t laugh you might cry, and because we’re happy we’re together.

There has been frustration, there has been sadness, there has been humor and there has been beauty, but I can honestly say that there has been no loneliness.

As Sarah said in her post last week, the best gift you can give your child is a sibling, and I’m so grateful my parents gave me mine.

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Jill and I trying to fit in during our last girls’ trip to L.A.

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The four of us at a girls’ dinner

 

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