I met my oldest friend when we were seven years old. Her family moved to BC from another province and as fate would have it, her house was just down the street from mine. She was in my second grade class and that, combined with the proximity of our homes, was enough to make us best friends. Life is so much easier when you're a kid.
We've been through a lot together. We lived in different cities. Different countries. On different continents. We've been through love and loss and tragic haircuts together. We've cursed idiot bosses and lamented oblivious crushes together. We've danced and sung "Sweet Caroline" and stumbled home from bars together. She was with me the night I met Shawn. She held my hand at our wedding. She is the person who, apart from my family, has known me the longest. She is my chosen family. She is one of my heart people.
My oldest friend recently had her life turned upside down. Her life's trajectory, her goals, her hopes and dreams all changed in one brutal instant. My oldest friend is an ass-kicker. She's a doer. She's efficient and methodical and one of the smartest people I know. But right now she's hurting. Watching her mourn and not be able to do anything but hold her hand and tell her I love her has been the hardest thing. I know that she's stronger than she knows. She's resilient. I know a little something about living life and all of a sudden having to do a Ross Geller "PIVOT!". I know that with time, she will build herself into an even tougher, even smarter, more tenacious lady. I know she's got this, even though it doesn't feel like it right now.
Today is my oldest friend's birthday. She should be celebrating. She should be on a patio somewhere, enjoying the sun and a glass of something bubbly. She shouldn't be hurting. So today, on my oldest friend's birthday, I want to ask the universe for a little magic. I wish for strength and peace and fortitude and a little sparkle for my oldest friend.
Lady, things have been terrible. Unimaginably so. But they won't be terrible forever. I promise. I love you and I wish you a happy birthday and a happier year to come, my oldest friend.