I’m going to cop to the fact that I’ve been watching entire seasons (sometimes in one sitting) of Sex and The City reruns lately. As a result, I’m sort of in a “girlfriend haze”. Last night I dreamed that Carrie Bradshaw and I were taking the Jitney to the Hamptons together when I accidentally barfed on her. So anyways. Before you read on, please note my recent influences and forgive the corniness. Consider it an early love letter to my girlfriends in honor of Valentine’s Day.
I realized last night that I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned something on this blog that is a major staple in my life. Skimming my blog, you’d probably think that Whitney Port and the characters from Lost are my best friends. The truth is, for the last 6 or 7 years, I have attended “Girl’s Night” at least once a week, pretty much every week. I’m not sure exactly how it got coined Girl’s Night, and I’m not sure I love the name, but it stuck, so there you have it.
Girl’s Night is a gathering that includes me, Heidi, Darrah, Amy and Kristin (with the occasional conference call to Katherine in LA). Sadly, since Kristin moved to Bellingham, we rarely get to see her at our weekly gatherings any more but we’ve soldiered on and the remaining four get together as often as we can. Over the years, girl’s night has had many iterations. In the early days, I think we rotated apartments on a pretty regular schedule with the host making an entrée and every one else bringing a side dish. We would all sit down to eat together and go around the table to talk through our week. Over time, our routine got a little lazier and we often found ourselves ordering Domino’s pizza and Dippin’ Dots for dinner. I still laugh (although I doubt Darrah does) when I remember the time Kristin brought Ezelles take-out for our dinner at Darrah’s apartment and accidentally put the Styrofoam and plastic container of baked beans in the oven to keep warm (um, melted plastic flavored baked beans scraped from the bottom of the stove anyone?) At some point, we started skipping dinner and pared down to just cupcakes from a mix. Lately, we’ve gotten really comfortable - food is rarely involved in our gatherings, wine plays a more coveted role than it used to, and recommended attire is yoga pants and a hoodie. But we still get together almost every week.
Last night, Amy made dinner and hosted at her house. While dinner was fantastic (props to Gran Gran for her chicken casserole recipe), my favorite parts of the night were not about the food. First of all, Kristin surprised us by driving all the way from Bellingham just to join us for dinner. We see her so rarely these days that it was really exciting. Then after dinner, we all curled up with our respective blankets on our respective couches to talk. We talked about our relationships, our families, Darrah’s impending wedding, touched on work, seriously discussed the question “children – to have or not to have?” and also had really gross and hilarious conversations about Amy’s dog and his shit-eating and genital grooming habits.
Girl’s night isn’t always this perfect; sometimes we’re cranky, or two of us are feuding over something petty and it comes out in the group. Yesterday I wasn’t feeling well, but last night for me was still Girl’s Night at its best. I drove home from Amy’s house shivering in my freezing ass car, but also reflecting on how lucky I am to have such good friends that will love me no matter what and that I love unconditionally (which is the same thing as “no matter what” but whatever…).
I’ve known Kristin all my life. When I was born, she was one year old and lived across the street. Strangely, Darrah also grew up on our street, but moved or lost touch or something. We reunited in high school when she transferred to my ballet studio. Heidi and I met when I was a freshman in high school and she was a senior. We bonded over our dorky love of drama club and that bond was solidified when we were cast (along with Darrah) in a one-act play by our matchmaker friend Katherine (who would later play a pivitol role in me meeting Jeff). I met Amy when she was randomly assigned to be Kristin’s dorm-mate in 1996 (and then later became one of Jeff’s roommates). My point is that I’ve known these people a long time. They know me as well as I know myself. They are my chosen family. They are the ones who will grocery shop for me when Jeff is out of town and I have the flu. They are the ones I would dig my car out of the snow to go pick up when they’re stuck at Northgate Mall and in tears. In many ways we are a weird, lopsided combo. Darrah practically plugs her ears in disgust the second poop is brought up in conversation, and Amy lets farts fly as frequently as a dude. Kristin’s idea of a light read is Fast Food Nation, where Heidi and I guiltily consumed the entire Twilight series. But for one reason or another it works.
And also? I still have Friday night to look forward to! Friday I’m meeting up with a different set of girlfriends for dinner. (One day soon, I’ll write an equally reminiscent post about the “Misty Mint” and our motley crew) Having couple friends when you’re in a couple is nice, but truly – is there anything better than your girlfriends?