I have a best friend...her name is Ashley. Now, this is not going to be one of those sappy things..."I just don't know what I would do without you, etc., etc." We've been there...done that...she knows the deal. But we do live by a code...a little thing we call the "Best Friend Code". I've been thinking a lot about it lately...mostly because I'm finishing up the last of the "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" books, which are all about friends and sticking by each other and growing up together and apart. Excellent books, by the way!
Anyway, I've known Ashley pretty much all my life. I don't remember her from all of my life...but I have proof that I knew her when. There's a picture floating around in the thousands that Mom has of my sister & me when we were young...my sister is on a stage at Christmas time and in the background...almost cropped out (because the picture was of Missy, you know) stands Ashley with her long blonde hair and her corduroy jumper singing her heart out. I know its her because Ashley looks pretty much the same as she did when she was 4. At any rate, my first "real" memory of Ash is when she was probably about 13 and I was 14. Her family was just starting to attend Oaklawn...her Mom & Dad that is...her grandparents had always been there...and she had come to some youth outing and we were all in the church office. I'm sure Jamie Wagner was there and me and I don't know who else, but I just remember Ashley laughing at everything we said. Because, that's what Ashley does! Soon after we began hanging out, made even more convenient since our parents had gone to school together! And it always seemed we were one place or the other. Over the years, I wouldn't say we've always been close...we would drift away and then drift back...always picking up where we left off. Probably over the past 3 to 4 years is when we have become the closest...and it's in these last few years that we developed the Code.
There are no official rules to the Best Friend Code...they are more "understood"...and let's face it...we are GENIUSES at making up the rules as we go along. But just for fun, these are some examples:
#1: Ashley & I always stick together when taking on Zac. Whatever hair-braned scheme he has thought up, I back her up when she says no and she backs me up. Well...until Zac aggravates us to the point where we just give up...but we give up together...it's the code.
#2: We have found the best way to deal with the boys in our life is to let them have the big TV in the living room...we'll take the smaller one in one of our bedrooms. Of course, with the door shut to keep out the loudness and tuned to whatever WE want to watch...whether it be the Carol Burnett infomercial that we were hoping was the Carol Burnett show...or watching a good chick flick. It's just better that way...of course, until the boys invade...and then the fun's over.
#3: There are certain things that we tell each other that we don't tell Zac. They are things that we feel each other needs to know...but Zac doesn't. For example, Zac will probably never know about the date I had back in January. Because, obviously it didn't turn into anything...and also because we didn't want him to bother us about it. Too much information in his hands becomes dangerous...to us, that is.
#4: When I see something and then I look at Ashley and she starts laughing...I know that she has seen the same thing that I have and is thinking the same thing that I am. It's one of those weird ESP things between us...we just get it.
#5: While Ashley loves to spend time with her hubby and I love spending time with Dylan, we both understand that there are times when we just have to GET AWAY! And we make that time together. If I say...I've got to get out...she says, let's go. And vice versa. It's always nice to know you have an escape partner.
#6: It is not necessary to have a clean house in order to invite the other one over. Neither one of us really lives like slobs...but I cannot promise that Dylan has not spilled cracker crumbs all over the couch and Ash cannot promise that I won't get Elly hair all over my clothes. However, we don't care...and we don't make it a big priority. You know you've hit a level of friendship when you walk into a room with a bed piled high with laundry and your friend says, "yeah, I haven't gotten around to folding it" and she doesn't care that you are seeing this.
#7: We never get mad at each other. I can truly say I've never been mad at Ash...she's never annoyed me...she's never aggravated me. There are traits in her that I admire and wish I had, but we are honest and true to each other.
Like I said...these aren't rules to live by...this is the Code in it's barest form...there's more, but it'd be hard to put into words. The Code exists between us to keep our friendship strong and to keep us sane in this crazy world. LONG LIVE THE BEST FRIEND CODE!!!