Thursday, August 18, 2005

Angel


My housekeeper/babysitter spent a night at the farm with me. She's an angel, I know it. She showed up with a basket brimming with food and alcohol that included a pot of some amazing Polish dish, French bread, and a bottle of Malibu with pineapple juice. After sunning on the beach all day and her totally entertaining my daughter without being paid, we put the kid to bed and stayed up telling on our husbands while getting very drunk and eating cookies (so much for my diet blog). As she told her story of growing up in Poland, getting her education, then immigrating to the US where now she's back to square one again, she said, "now look at how unlikely this is, one of my best friends is 15 years older than me and I work for her." In my drunken haze, this took a minute to sink in. She was talking about me. I felt so grateful I almost cried.

About two years ago I had a very bad miscarriage that brought me to the brink of my life and left me in the hospital for a week. Following this I sunk into a dull depression and the highlight of my weeks was when Ewelina came to clean. She cried with me, hugged me a lot, and gave me many words of encouragement. A few months later, the women that were more formally my friends gradually disappeared. I'd overhear playdate arrangements that were never extended to me and Chloe. I'd stopped getting phone calls, and suddenly the loft that at one time the neighborhood kids would so gleefully trash, became an empty and lonely place.

There was one other person who was a light to me, my guitar instructor, Alejandro. He was just a sweet guy from Columbia that played really good classical guitar and was a great listener. He didn't know my tragedy, but he knew something had suddenly made me sad, all the time.

In my isolation from "the group" and my despair, I remember thinking - how is it that the people (besides my family) with whom I have the most meaningful friendships with, I have to pay for the services they provide? I thought that was a cursed position to be in. Today, I realize what a privilege it has been for me to have made these friendships.

Ewa's still with me. We attended her wedding this year as a family - as part of her family. Alejandro - well, I quit the lessons for awhile. It's always been hard for me to have friendships with men. We see each other occasionally at jazz clubs, have a drink, and enjoy catching up. And the mother's group - some have scattered. We still keep up and get the kiddies together occasionally. They're good women, and I'm glad to know them. Nothing seems right for a long time when your uterus has been torn asunder. It's all all right, now.

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