I make my way into my friend’s house. I flop onto her sofa as I often do.
Her sweet old dog makes her way to me. Forcing her big body off the floor to greet me no matter that age pulls her down. I stop to indulge her because truth be told, I love her as she loves me.
My friend and I always call each other Lucy and Ethel. Naturally, we always fight over who gets to be Lucy. Who wouldn’t??
I guess it’s only fair that I call her, “Lucy,” in my column.
My life is a little more ‘Ethel” these days, anyway. And when you’re really the best of friends, then you always see the ‘star’ in those you love.
“Lucy” and I have our normal ritual. Once I flop onto her couch, she continues to swipe away at her computer long enough to finish up whatever I have interrupted.
I like to stop by unannounced. Like a homing pigeon who needs to know she’s back on route.
Then she finds her way to the other couch in her family room and flops onto it beside me.
We like to solve the worlds problems me and Lucy. We have logged some hours over the years deciding how to do things correctly. Our latest quest, helping me decipher where I went wrong.
Lucy is a great friend. Not one to ever instill doubt. She’s loyal, no, she’s loyal to a fault….She’s never going to see anything, but the best in me. I’m going to make every wrong turn in life and she’s going to be sitting shotgun next to me, saying, “You aren’t going the wrong way………….The sign was wrong.”
I, of course, love that. Who wouldn’t? Needless to say, why naturally, I let her be “Lucy” for this column.
Lucy’s trademark loyalty is about to show itself in spades.
I think it’s over. I think I’ve made the worst mistake of my life. I think there’s no returning. I think that my marriage predicament has left me in shambles.
“Look,” says Lucy. “If they took you up into an airplane and told you that you had a 50% chance of not surviving would you jump?”
“Well,” I say. “Lucy, you know I don’t like heights and more importantly you know I don’t like to fly,” (my husband always said I was more fun in the airport than I was the whole trip – nothing wrong with a cocktail pre-vacation). Lucy is of course, referencing the fact that at least 50% of marriages end in divorce.
“SO,” I say. “No………I wouldn’t jump.”
“Exactly,” say Lucy.
She says nothing more.
All the angst leaves me.
Lucy has restored her wingmen. Ethel and me, we are feeling quite good.
Like Laverne and Shirley, like Thelma and Louise, like Lorelai and Rory, like Mary and Rhoda, like Cagney and Lacey, like Tina Fey and Amy Poehler, Lucy makes me feel brave, despite the fact that I am surrounded in suburbia by the 50% who survived the sky diving incident.
Lucy doesn’t ask me, “Where will we find room to fit you in to our couple filled airplane?”
She turns towards me, both of us quiet in the space where friendship needs no words and smiles.
She’s my wingman. Even though originally, “Lucy” didn’t know what that word meant.
“Why would you ever jump?” says Lucy.
“I know, right?” I say.