The commitment is real! I cannot believe we’re heading into March- and week 8 of #52WeeksA4A is coming to a close. And this week is not stumping me as the others have, but making me rather cautious. See, when I write about myself, I am not concerned, but when I share about someone else, I am taking my writing, my public life and our relationship and sharing it with the world (eeeer… whoever dares to read it).
So, I chose to write about a woman who dug me out of a place I wasn’t sure how I’d gotten to. Kelli.
Kelli and I met in the choir room in my first week of school at Upper Moreland. I’d just changed from private school, where I’d started in 7th grade (the same year my Dad passed), and had decided mid-way through my freshman year, didn’t work for me anymore. Previously, I’d been at another private school which ended in 6th grade, seemingly along with my confidence and most of my innocence. When I started public school, I had no friends. I’d met a boy on AOL (!) who worked at Acme and went to Upper Moreland. I dated him (hello 15 year old Chelley + boy troubles) and then broke up with him. I’d been playing field hockey with the high school team for pre-season, but my short purple hair, propensity for cursing and cigarette habit wasn’t forming the best bond.
So, as I sat in choir, this pathetic and depressed punk, and she sat with me and said hi. Our friendship was that simple. And yet, complicated.
Over the years boys, beers and brawls (emotional, never physical) have passed between us, but never distrust or hurt. I’ve loved the girl who had the courage to befriend the freak since day 1, and could not imagine how I would have survived high school without her. Kelli has been there through thick and thin, from my passing out at her graduation during the National Anthem to prom dates, my college graduation, breakups, drunken nights, wedding photos, hospital stays, birthday parties, kids crying and every single time I’m back “home” in Philadelphia, she makes time to see
Kelli has taken my family as her own, enjoying a glass of wine while we all reminisce, dream and chatter around the dinner table. Sending cards to my girls for the holidays. Remembering how much we love mod podge and the time we went to Blockbuster (remember Blockbuster?) with me looking like a lady of the night. Our 15 years of friendship has spanned a lifetime of schooling, jobs, breakups, parties, car accidents, mix tapes, babies… and I cannot wait to see where the next 15 takes us.
Love you, KelBell (AFF).