There is nothing in the world like a real friend.
Not an acquaintance or someone you know because of a group you belong to (although real friends are there!) Not someone you see on the street and say "Hi, how are you? How are the kids?"
No, I mean someone who knows you. Without asking or prying, they just know.
I am truly lucky. I have real friends.
My very first friend is still my friend. For 60 years this month, she has been a part of my life. We didn't even know it then, but we were friends.
We can call each other at 3am. Sometimes for a real good reason. Sometimes for no reason at all. When I lived in Minot, North Dakota, she saved me more than once from losing my mind. I was cold and alone and it was very, very dark. But she was on the other end of the line.
In high school we would call each other and just stay on the phone. We wouldn't even talk. Back then there was only one phone in the house and our parents would make us hang up so someone else could use the phone. Then we would call each other again.
We didn't hang out together at school. No particular reason. Really didn't need to. She was there if I needed her and I for her. We walked to school together for some years as our mothers were both nurses at the local hospital. I remember those walks with a smile on my face. We were friends.
Back then we had different interests and different family problems. But our friendship was and still is very, very special. It has been central to my life and a cornerstone in my development as a human being.
Now, we may not talk to each other for months at a time. It doesn't matter. When I answer the phone and shortly break into giggles, my spouse not only knows who it is, he knows not to interrupt!
We are still very different. But we are still, and always will be, best friends.
This is her birthday month. She will be my age for a little over 30 days.
Vicki, tonight, this blog is for you.
Happy Birthday, my dear friend.
And thank you. For being you.