Thursday, March 13, 2008
I was thrilled and mortified. My long lost gal pal from London was coming for a visit, our first since my wedding two years ago. Yes, she last saw me back when I was a shadow of my present pregnant, Mom-ified suburban self. About 30 pounds and several hundred gray hairs ago. I have since taken to wearing sensible shoes and jeans that cost less than my car. She on the other hand, remains unmarried though safely attached, with a fabulous career in interactive media, a showroom type house, several kickboxing and Pilates classes per week and the wardrobe to better showcase said classes’ results.
I was dying to see her – she would finally meet my 14 month old “baby,” then we were jetting off to New York for the weekend of shopping and partying for her and longing and self-pitying for me. Nearly 7 months pregnant, I could not drink, stay up late, buy any clothes, stand or walk for long periods of time or even eat very much. Plus I was on a budget. What fun for her.
I spent nearly twelve minutes preparing my hair and makeup and wardrobe for the airport pickup, a luxury from the usual four. My son grappled variously with my hoop earrings and trendy scarf and hat, throwing one item after the other under the bed or in the direction of the toilet. Heels were out of the question due to my imbalance, aching back and general body type of a Blue Meanie from the Beatle’s Yellow Submarine cartoon movie (no neck, all giant torso and thighs on spindly feet). I settled on my one pair of maternity jeans that stay up, and flat but expensive black boots.
I waited anxiously outside the terminal, everything between my neck and knees safely hidden under a large black winter coat. She emerged from the building, chocolate hair shining, lip gloss glistening, shearling coat flowing behind her, toting two small, stylish carry on pieces of luggage that were not pastel colored or thrown up on. She got in the car, we embraced, and it was suddenly obvious she was far younger and less tired than I….but she saw the old me.
“You look great!” she beamed, all of her unclogged pores radiating health and maintenance.
“You lie,” I laughed, sucking in my cheeks.
She adored my son. She lavished us with gifts from Cadbury and Harrod’s. She helped with the dishes. And all weekend she kept telling me I looked great. Even when I cut out of an afternoon of New York City window shopping to don my XXL pajamas and take a nap in the hotel. Which was, of course, the most fun I had all weekend.
She understood. Solid girlfriends just rule, don't they?
Posted by Tracy McArdle at 3:18 PM