Age is just a number

One of my dearest friends here in Ohio is just a few months younger than my oldest son. As a matter of fact, it’s her birthday today- Happy Birthday Rachel! My four year old Lydia is crazy about her daughter Olivia; they have a mutual admiration club going on.

We first met last summer at a church picnic. Bonding over texting about a mutual friend’s son’s impending birth led to play dates, girls’ nights out, girls’ nights in, family dinners and lots of Fun. We chat throughout our day via texting- encouraging one another, sharing pictures, recipes, funny anecdotes our children say, prayer requests and just living life together as friends, one day at a time.

From the moment of our first conversation I really admired her. She has had all three of her babies at home and even though I have had all nine of mine “naturally” at the hospital. I have great admiration for home birthers and she is a Rock Star in my book. We have a desire for healthy eating in common, raising our children for God, a good glass of wine, homeschooling, fun and wacky crafts for our kids, tips on how to be superwomen fixing things around our houses, natural remedies to our bodies’ ailments, a desire to be good moms even when we are so tired we can’t see straight, a good laugh, a good movie, a good song to sing….which leads me to the other night.

My three older girls and I picked Rachel up one evening last week to go out for an impromptu ice cream date at Graeters. Love their ice cream. We were singing to ” Just Give Me a Reason ” by Pink and Fun and then Justin Timberlake’s ” Suit and Tie” came on as we pulled into her driveway. Rachel hopped in the car and the entire car began reminiscing down memory lane as we discussed boy bands from the 90’s. We started talking about 98 Degrees, Backstreet Boys and N’Sync. We had a rousing discussion about the boy band concerts. We debated Justin Timberlake’s merits and career choices and successes and then we had the following conversation.

Me:” I guess I really never had to deal with the boy band craze too much as my boys were the older ones when the bands were popular.”

Lilly and Phoebe chimed in that Grace liked them.

Grace ( my 21 year old on Saturday): “I liked them, I had all the CDs, I was in 2nd grade.”

Rachel: ” I was in 6th grade.”

As I heard giggles coming from the backseat, it occurred to me, I was the mother of the 2nd grader as well as a 5th grader a few months younger than Rachel with a few more boys in between. As a matter of fact I had six children at this time in history.

I really never think about the age difference of my friend and I. I have to admit the above conversation gave me a giggle and pause for thought that yes I am twenty years older than her, but on any given day, age is non-existent. Just like she never made me feel “old” as I struggled this winter and spring through the dark days of my hormones being out of whack, she just made me feel supported. We spend our days as women walking shoulder to shoulder and just enjoying being friends.

Age is just a number, even when I text her asking for permission to post about our friendship. See text below:

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Yep, age is just a number. Happy Birthday dear friend!

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I have a secret, I wear headphones.

I have a secret. Last night when my head was hurting from the day’s chatter and I was sure I had lactic acid build-up of the ears ( see July 20th post), I put on my headphones.

I secretly smiled as I heard my husband repeat to the children, ” Keep your voices down, mom is listening to something. Why are you trying to talk to your mom right now? Can’t you see she is busy?” And the best statement yet, music to my ears, ” Okay , that’s it, everybody outside, it’s too noisy in here for your mom to hear anything. Outside, lets go play.”

Sometimes, usually late at night when the moon is high in the sky and the house is quiet, I might have my headphones on. I am occasionally watching a show on Netflix or Hulu just taking a little “me time” before I get in touch with the back of my eyelids. There are nights a teenager or adult child peeks their head in my bedroom and I just close my eyes. They probably think , ” Poor Mom fell asleep watching something.” Or I point to my headphones and then David sleeping and smile and wave.

We had two sets of headphones and one set quit working. My entire family looked at me as if I were near- crazed as I broke into a cold sweat and frantically looked all over the house for the other pair. They are unaware of the relationship the headphones and I have- our little secret.

I am not sure what my sweet husband thought I was listening to right before dinner with my headphones on, but I like the way he thinks. As he came in from outside and leaned in, gave me a kiss and asked, ” So what are you listening to or watching?” I smiled a Garfield-the -cat -size-smile and held out the end of my unplugged headphone and pointed to the IPad three feet away on the windowsill.

“I was actually grading papers, and I was just trying to block out the noise. Thanks honey, it worked.”

I’m not sure if I can pull it off again, but if you run into me at the grocery store or around town with my headphones on, just smile and wave please, it’ll be our little secret.

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That’s right, go ahead and picture me with these headphones on in the middle of Whole Foods. The cashiers will just think I am taking my singing to a whole new level.