It’s Susan’s birthday today. My best friend from grade school. After you died, Susan’s mom Elsie was like a mother to me, and I became part of their family—ha whether they liked it or not because Susan, being the oldest, always got her way. And now I’m really like part of the family since Susan and I fixed up her brother Bud and my sister Ruth. They have a son Josh. Susan and I always joke, if we were married that’s what our kid would look like. No one gets that—what we’re saying—it’s a friend thing from having had over 40 years sharing the good and the not-so-good times in our lives.
Before we could drive, we wanted matching cars. Susan a light blue Volkswagen Beetle and I wanted mine a bright yellow.
Susan and I went to different high schools. I was dating a guy, and went to a CYC dance at my old grade school. It was at the dance my date laid eyes on Susan and he fell in love—love at first sight. After high school the two moved to Hawaii and married. The good thing from that marriage was their son Steven.
Both Susan and I have gone through three divorces and are currently on our fourth marriage. We didn’t plan it that way. It seemed like when she was getting a divorce, I was getting married and vice-a-versa.
We’ve had a brief period of not speaking, but the love of our friendship was too strong to let that go on.
Even after 40 years I’m still discovering something new about Susan. There are as many differences between us as there are similarities, but we both accept each other for who we are—and that is a beautiful thing.
Happy Birthday Susan!
P.S. Mom, here’s a rendering of the two of us that your grandson Casey created from our grade school pictures that's below the painting.