~ friends send you a text message to let you know they are thinking about you and expect nothing in return, knowing you hate texting
~ friends print a picture from your wedding and bring it to your dad's hospital room just to see him smile
~ friends know your family--are your family--and accept all of the secrets, too
~ friends reminisce and laugh about the same old jokes for the last twenty years, then offer advice and encouragement for the next twenty years in the same breath
~ friends run over to your house to play, whether you are eight years old and bring toys, or thirty-six years old and bring wine
~ friends invite you to events, places, aware you may not respond, but aren't offend
~ friends tell you what you need and how to handle the financial, emotion challenges so you don't have to decide
~ friends remove stressors by making the phone calls you are dreading and handling any task they can without you
~ friends make it unbearably hard to choose a "best" man
~ friends hop on a plane at moments notice and fly across the country to sit by your side as your dad is dying
These are the friends my husband has.
For this, I am thankful.
As a wife, I offer support, say the right words, embrace and comfort him. No one will ever love him or look at him like I do.
However, he has a special group of friends that provide him a different kind of strength. So, when he texts and says he doesn't know what time he will be home tonight, I don't worry. Especially not tonight. He needs them. The stories they will tell. The memories they will share. The solace they will provide.
Instead, I revel in having the house to myself for a beat. We get reacquainted on this cold night, snuggled in blankets next to the fire. I control the remote and watch the mindless and meaningless. For a moment, my mind is able to focus on something else because he has found a blessing in them.