that time i met my friend from the internet

i've written that line quite a few times in my life. becoming a mom at the age of 20 leaves you few places to turn, the internet seems like a pretty good idea. i don't, nor have i ever, lived in an area where it's been easy for me to make friends. i don't fit the typical mom mold around here and it has been a long painful process building up a village i can trust. when Jack was 2 i felt the pressure to have another baby. having grown up alone, meaning without siblings, i knew even at 19, when i decided to go through with the pregnancy, that i wanted this baby to have a little crew to grow up with, experience life, survive us as parents with. unfortunately, or fortunately i suppose, life had some more lessons to teach me. after a 2nd pregnancy loss, i was in a tailspin. i found a life after miscarriage forum online and was hooked. it is very surreal to look back at myself during that time. how just...crazy i was. obsessed with getting pregnant, needing to talk to people who understood how it felt all.the.time. reducing my life to fertility abbreviations. friendships are forged in these hard places, where we lean so heavily on the words of someone else. someone who survived. i met Bren.


Bren's journey is her own, but i'll just say that when she got pregnant with and gave birth to Stella, there were a whole lot of people who breathed a sigh of relief with her. it was a tough fucking road. i can remember sharing so many dark moments with her, joy and pain, milestones, pregnancy, all of it. she was one of the first people i talked to after Leo was born...and i'm fairly sure i was asking her up until i went into labor if she was *sure* the baby would, in the end, really be fine.

so when i was scrolling through FB last thursday and happened upon a post of hers casually mentioning that she was going to be in Boston, i sort of freaked out. we last minute planned the most wonderful afternoon, and as though being reminded that this was all in the plan, Massachusetts let up for a day and the sunshine actually felt warm, the breeze was gentle, and i'm pretty sure i heard birds chirping.

6. Six. six-years-later. we met and hugged. and i tugged at Stella's curls that have been a marvel since she was born. and Bren felt Leo's sweet golden hair and heard his laugh. and it was as though we had been friends forever and ever. husbands got along, great food was eaten, friendship was strengthened and reinforced. and just like that, at the end of the day, poof. it was done. life returns to normal and it's as though she wasn't even here. and the only real difference now is that...i miss her.