Sunday, July 15, 2007

dyllan's first party (and her hot mom)

In high school, I had a group of girl friends (Kim, Mandy, Beth, and Kristin) who were known as "the herd." We were called this by a group of boys (we all traded crushes on these boys, occasionally dating, sometimes just kissing) because of our ability to move about the halls as a group of five, because we went to dances as a mass, to the mall, to sleepovers, to classes. When one of us was doing something, like performing in a play, the other four would attend together. We made surveys, much like the senior surveys (and Beth was most likely to be last to get married, which turns out will be true, though Mandy was most likely to end up watching soaps and having a ton of cats... which is, um, also true, but she has a husband and will soon have a baby to add to that mix) and loved each other fiercely.

Kim hosted this baby shower for our dear Mandy, the one who wanted to be a sexologist when she grew up, the one who was extraordinarily difficult to embarrass or shock. And she is the first of my high school friends to get pregnant, so seeing her belly, all full of baby, was such a surprise, and so amusing as she began to swear her way through the night, proving that maternity wear does not change personality.
Kim had us make her a scrapbook page each: "My mommy is the best because..." and we'd illustrate it with pictures. I brought all my non-baby appropriate pictures too ("My mommy is the best because she drinks lite beer" and, of course, other, much worse things), but mine was "My mommy is the best because she's musical" (which she is not, but she liked to plunk along the piano or guitar and sing in warbly off key).

And dear, adorable Chris, who was not in the herd, but the herd was really mostly a freshman year thing, then we began to mutate and change, and we all know how much I love Chris--she was surprised at the baby belly, wanting to touch it and not wanting to touch it, curious about the scientific aspects of the experience.

Mandy was in rare form last night. Clearly filled up with a classic Mandy attitude, profanity and flatulence often came up in conversation. She swore Dyllan's first word would be "motherfucker" (and her second word would be "daddy"), and Mandy said she would be sorely disappointed if her child did not sass back to her. She clarified--she didn't want a tantrum throwing child, but one who would ask inappropriate questions at inappropriate times. Given my first memories of Mandy, I don't think this will be a problem.

The stomach touching continued well into the evening, everyone wanting to feel Dyllan wobbling around. She was fairly stubborn, not unlike her mother, and, as Mandy pointed out, it's not like you can just convince her to move around at will. This didn't stop Jen from poking her ("That's her head, I'm poking her in the butt") to try to induce some movement. (Jen, tactless in the best sense of the word, who is kind but curious, is also a friend since middle school days, whose parents live only two houses from my own parents.)
We told stories of our own experiences and memories. I confessed the doctors thought I might be a boy as I came out due to the amount of dark hair. My sister was bald, blondely fuzzy.

Full of pasta and beer ("Mandy, you don't mind, do you?"), we sat at Kim's house long into the night, well past our bedtimes (and what used to be the time we'd start to think about going out), going through the yearbook and talking about what has happened in the past nine years, thinking about ten year reunions and what we have to be proud of (oh dear, I am afraid I might be profoundly lacking). Of course, if the question comes up, "Are you happy?", I will be able to answer YES and mean it.

What made me most content about this evening was simply being with the girl friends I know I don't see nearly enough. But there is something to be said about friendships that can survive great gaps in time. We've been friends, all of us, since middle school, early high school. We've grown and changed and been witness to so many great events together. I have many, many lovely new friendships, and wouldn't trade those for anything, and it is so good, too, to celebrate those old friendships, the ones that come packed with history (and hilarity).


Rob Kistner said...

Great post... great photos... keep us alerted on Dyllan's first words... ;)

beth said...

beautiful. i can't believe how much our personalities and lives have evolved in such unexpected (yet expected) ways.

gautami said...

I am touched by the post.

KeLL said...

Why is Chris touching Mandy's stomach in every picture? I think this is so adorable!! Mandy is so beautiful pregnant!