I love my best friend. We met in seventh grade and convinced ourselves that two band geek introverts could take over the world. She’s got two beautiful kids and is a great mother. But if I started this entry explaining how she recently tried to kill a cat in her backyard with a BB gun b/c it was a nuisance, I probably would’ve judged her the same as you are now.
I left my best friend in Louisiana 8 years ago. I have since lived in New York, Paris, Florida, and California. She’s been in Louisiana the whole time. In and out of trailers, apartments, been on government assistance, married twice, 2 babies and a life-threatening infection that kept her in the hospital for a month without health insurance. But knowing that she was running around the backyard she won’t let her kids go in b/c she’s afraid they’ll get worms chasing a knocked up cat with a BB gun trying to put it out of its misery b/c the neighbor keeps feeding it table scraps, well, I think we’ve hit a barrier.
I understand why she’s shopping around for a double-wide trailer. She’s always wanted a home with a yard for her kids to play in and a place for family to gather. But when asked if I’d ever come back to Louisiana to live, I could only say not voluntarily. She responded by saying when children are raised right in the south, they don’t have any desire to leave home. And then she tried to kill a cat with a BB gun.
I still love her, she can lecture me about my moodiness or questionable decisions, and only she can get away with it. But I don’t know if she’ll ever know where my life is now. Our shared experiences parted ways 8 years ago. So when she says she wants all her kids to stay on the same block because that’s what proper parenting is about, and I say that good parents will kick their kids out to experience life elsewhere, we’ll just have to trust that each of us is speaking from the same place. But still, the barrier is up, and that makes me a little sad.