So, Monday evening I got home from my 12 day trip to Utah. I was welcomed by a raging compost fire filling the valley air with all kinds of hazmat and stink, a DVR 44% full of things to catch up on (in addition to this being fall premiere week!), and an extreme sense of “who am I and what am I doing here???”
Every time I travel to Utah I get hit with the “we should move back here” bug. There’s never enough time to visit all of my friends or spend enough quality time with the ones that I do. I find that the Salt Lake valley has filled with all kinds of new places and things for me to discover and fall in love with that make everything back home in California (at least in my city) seem lame and ghetto. Usually I grapple with this for several weeks after getting home, but not this time. This time, almost as soon as I crossed over from Nevada (which I am reverting to referring to it as “The Great And Spacious Waste”) and saw that lovely “Welcome to California!” sign in all its blue & green with poppies sprinkled on it glory, I felt something wash over me and knew it was still cool to live here. All of the things that keep me anchored here in spite of all the crappy politics, expensive real estate, and lack of friendly neighbors rushed back into me and my heart enveloped
Mexifornia Calexico California all over again.
At Girl’s Night Out I met with some of the same ladies as last year, and a few new ones joined our party as well. We’ve started calling it a mini-SHS reunion as most of us know eachother from our glory days of high school. We have all come to know that who we were then is just a small part of who we are now. We have so much more experience now, so much more confidence in our own selves – we now take time to listen and learn from each other, to share our same-ness instead of worrying about our looks or certain boys. I’m lucky that many of these ladies didn’t move too far from home, it lets me connect with many more of them than if they had left the state like I did. However infrequent our contact is I need it to help me remember who I am, then and now.
For the first time I met a group of ladies I have been online friends with for a little more than a year. Probably longer, my mind is terrible at remembering my own timeline. We call ourselves the Sistas because that is who we are to eachother. The sisters we never had or wish we were. The sisters we need in good times and bad. The sisters who carry us through life when we are too weak to do it ourselves. The friendships and relationships I have longed for ever since I left my close friends behind in Utah, I have found again. I don’t mean to diminish my dear friend Shana the Beautiful, she is all of these things, too. But when I was young I had many of these friends. As I got older, I found myself in a place of having none. When I left for California I didn’t notice it at first, but gradually I came to find that women don’t seem to have the closeness that we do when we are kids. I began to fear that I would never again have the kind of friend that I could just go hang out with even if I hadn’t showered that day. Or go to lunch. Or feel safe dumping my kids on, or doing the same thing for someone else. Little by little, these friendships have come back to me. Some from my past, others from the present. Now I know I am not alone. Now it is on me if I feel that way, because time and again these relationships help save me and I save them. We truly are sisters in Zion, even if some of them are gentiles (wink, wink!).
Well, that’s enough of me waxing poetic about how much I love my friends, Utah, and California. I guess I can’t leave my stuff in the duffel bag forever, eventually I’m going to need clean underwear!
Side note: My oldest boy, B, has been wanting me to watch these “Kid History” videos on youTube. B is not known for having a good sense of humor so I ignored him for a bit. My awesome sister Emily happened to show me some of these videos when I was at her house. FRICKIN’ HILARIOUS!!! My favorite is Episode 5. Go. Check it out. Laugh!