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I met her four years ago. We were both pregnant. She, with her sixth and final child, me with my third, and "What was I thinking?" child. I'm four years older than her. She'll be 39 in late May this year. One week later, I'll be 43.

In many ways, we are different. She is a member of a church that I am not. She and I have contrasting opinions on politics and a variety of social issues, although we've found more common ground than people might think.

I drink wine, she does not. She cooks with it and will send one of her children to our home to retrieve a brown paper lunch sack concealing a plastic container of Chardonnay or Cabernet Sauvignon for one of her recipes. I say to the helpful and obedient child, "Be careful. Don't open the sack or spill. Your mama needs this for her recipe."

In this woman, who is so different from me, I have found a kindred spirit. There are portions of our days, weeks, and lives that are not compatible, yet she pulls me. The few common threads we share are strong ones.

I have friends who I've known and loved much longer than Supermodel. Friendships that require less struggle and no suppression of thoughts. Supermodel and I have had teeth clenched, tongue biting, nose snorting, heart-pounding conversations, and stare downs. Yet, she pulls me.

Three years ago, I recall standing in the doorway from our kitchen to our garage. Chris was away on business. Toddler Child was nine-months-old, and I was exhausted. Supermodel had tried to phone me a few times within a couple of days, and I hadn't answered her calls. Our garage door was open because the older boys were playing outside. I opened the kitchen door to the garage and saw Supermodel several feet away in our driveway. Our eyes met, and she said, "What's wrong?"

I said, "It's my _____."

She took what seemed like two steps, reached her long and loving arms towards me, and I sobbed as she held me. She just held me. She didn't try to explain it or fix it, she simply soothed. I'll never forget it.

Among other reasons, this is why I call her Supermodel.

Supermodel's legs - March 2009

Reader Comments (20)

She sounds like a lovely friend. And all the differences are just as important as the common threads. How we learn from each other, yes?

(For how long would I have to run on the treadmill to look like that??) :-)

March 27, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer H
It would be boring only to be friends with people just like oneself.

On a different note, I want her legs!
March 27, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRachel Cotterill
What a touching post. Sounds like you guys have a great friendship.

ps I want her legs too.
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterchristy
I'm a firm believer in having friends who challenge you to think. Whether they make you reconsider beliefs or just cement your convictions (isn't faith supposed to be stronger when tested?) - they help you grow as a person. And it's one of the few things that friends can do for each other that is 100% reciprocal (simultaneous even!).

And then of course I just like people who are different because they're entertaining. It's good to mix it up.
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterKate Coveny Hood
I'm jealous that you have found a friend like Supermodel. She is a gem!

And I want her legs too.
Lovely post! And how lucky you are to have such a wonderful friend!
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterLady Fi
Jennifer H - We do learn from each other. I think her legs are her gift. Mine will never look like that.

Rachel - Very boring! I want her legs too!

Christy - Thank you. I think it's safe to say, we all want her legs.

Kate Coveny Hood - Your comment is a post in and of itself. Lovely thoughts!

Connie - Supermodel doesn't always read my blog, but I hope she does, because she needs to hear from more than me how pretty her legs are.

Lady Fi - Thank you!
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChris
What a great post. It made me tear up. True friendship is such a precious gift.

And wow, what a body...you're right to call her Supermodel.
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnastasia
What a sweet post! And Supermodel is FOXY, as are you!

You two must be turning heads in the gym...
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDeidre
how sweet... I want to be that kind of friend, and I've NEVER had legs that look like that... I want them.
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterpam
What a great post. It's so great to find a friend like that!
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterBobbi Olson
How nice to have a friend like that.
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterthe mama bird diaries
I've always believed in having a wide variety of friends. Sometimes you disagree, which is good. We need friends who don't mirror us exactly; otherwise we could just as easily be alone all the time.

It sounds to me like the common threads are much stronger than the areas in which you disagree. And if you ask me, that's a good balance.

Please tell Supermodel that if her legs go missing, it wasn't me.
March 28, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJoan Hunt
Anastasia - Her legs go for miles. They really do.

Deidre - You're nice. We don't quite turn heads (we're old, remember?) but we're battling the bulge with discipline.

Pam - I want them too! Unless mine grow... no dice.

Bobbi & Mama Bird - It's very nice. Thanks.

Joan - Ha! Great comment. Thank you!
March 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterChris
I think your friend who borrows the wine must be a wonderful spirit. I fear tho with my try-anything Kelly, I'd not so much have to say don't spill it along the way, as don't drink it!

Beautiful insightful writing, as always, Chris!

And I will try to remind myself (again,) that tall lean gorgeous legs aren't the be all and end all. Still, wouldn't mind trying them out for a day! :)
March 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJannie Funster
Oh look! Supermodel got to the treadmill before that couple!

I'm glad to know that you have a friend like that. I have a post in my head about one of mine. You've inspired me to write it up.

March 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCheri @ Blog This Mom!
You and your friend totally destroy it for those of us who blame our lumps, bulges, and globules on our ONE or TWO children. ;-)

I loved this post, Chris, and understand what led you to the question you recently asked on mine. There is a dynamic in difference that can be beautiful as long as one is trying not to change the other.
March 29, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJane
I am forwarding this to my "supermodel" - she was the one who dropped everything when I got the "you've got cancer" call.

She left her high-powered insane job, ditched her twin toddlers and six-year old (to her understanding husband), sat in horrendous traffic, pulled off long enough to grab wine and chocolate.

She didn't even ring the doorbell. She came in, opened the wine, and sat with me on the couch as I screamed at the universe. All the while saying nothing other than "do you need more wine?"

Thanks for this reminder girl.
March 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAshley Doran
That's her on the treadmill?

March 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commentervodkamom
I used to know a supermodel. She, too, lived in Utah. Who woulda guessed the Beehive state is manufacturing these creatures?
March 31, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterx

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