Today is my “oldest” friend Christy’s birthday! (She loves being referred to as my oldest friend.) Honestly though, we’ve been friends since we were, what—4? 5? At some point, she transitioned from best friend to sister. She practically lived at my house and was honestly nearly as crushed when my pappap died as I was, and without her standing next to me through it all, I’m not sure I would have been able to make it through the funeral home viewings. Barb loves to quote the line “Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion” from Steel Magnolias, and there is one distinct moment in my life that I always immediately think of, and that is sitting with Christy at the kitchen counter in my pappap’s house after he died, picking through various fruit baskets, and being so slap-happy that my grandma finally was like, “OK, you two need to leave!”
I moved in second grade and the worst thing about it was that I was convinced I would never see Christy again. (We didn’t go to the same school, even when we were neighbors.) But luckily, the parentals were pretty amazing at carting our asses back and forth. I remember this one summer afternoon, swimming at my pappap’s house and being so surprised when he showed up with Christy in tow that I nearly cried of happiness.
We were junior bridesmaids in two weddings together: my aunt Susie’s and then my godfather Chris’s right after, because his fiancee thought we were so adorable in Susie’s wedding that she wanted us for hers too. I mean, duh. It’s weird to me that we never got anymore gigs together after that second one. I have a vague recollection of being in my grandma’s car after one of our fitting session and Christy and I were riotously singing “Pop Goes the Weasel” (the rap, not the nursery rhyme thing) over and over again that my grandma basically lost her mind.
l to r: Laurent, Christy, me, Corey, Ryan, and our dad’s godson Shawn a/k/a Bobo. This photo was taken at the “mountain trailer” my dad would occasionally drag us to. It was essentially one step up from camping and I hated it.
Poor Christy was the subject of love poems written by Laurent, our French foreign exchange student in 1992. We spent an entire summer (one of the ones that had an Olympics going on) heckling Bobo for having a crush on gymnast Shannon Miller when literally all he ever made was one offhand remark about her skill level. She’d go to the mall with me to stalk Scott Dambaugh in 8th grade and she tried really hard to save me from getting involved with Psycho Mike senior year. (Of course I didn’t listen.) She was my only friend who tried to talk me out of dropping out of high school and when I still did it anyway, she sent me information about various GED programs in the mail. I always felt like she was one of the few people who never judged me, because she is just an all-around awesome, supportive person and I feel #soblessed that we are still friends after all these years (ugh, decades!).
Which is a good thing, considering she is technically married to both of my brothers! She honeymooned with Ryan on the hammock in our backyard. He brought her snacks from the house and called her his “babe.”
And she’s Chooch’s godmother! He’s even shared chocolate “mouse” with her, and he HATES sharing desserts. (Or, “mousse” for those who like to properly pronounce desserts.)
I will forever associate her with TV Guides, Jaromir Jagr, and the MTV vjay Kennedy. From meeting each other on the greatest cul-de-sac in the world and publicly puking at a production of Annie, to cracking up in the middle of Saturday night mass and all of the Blue Flame burgers and secret Andre Agassi fanfic in between, if my life was a book, she’d be a main character in more than half of it. Happy birthday, my dear friend Christy “McGooGoo” a/k/a Crystal Lite. I hope we’re still wishing each other happy birthday when we’re old and gray, possibly through the power of holographic telegrams. Today, I will call a boy and hang up in your honor! (It will probably just be Henry, but still.)