Birthdays with Zeros & Best Friends


I have mentioned before that I am very close to two of my first cousins on my mom’s side of the family – Beth and Melinda.

Interestingly, Mel has a July birthday, I have an August birthday, and Beth has a September Birthday.  I’m not entirely sure why it fascinates me that the three of us have consecutive birthdays, but it does.

For the record, Mel and I are the youngest on my mom’s side.  She is turning 40 this year.  She’s two years older than me.  Beth is turning 50. She’s 12 years older than me.  I am also fascinated by the fact that the three of us have more in common than just blood.

When we were growing up, Mel once pointed out to me that if we weren’t cousins, we wouldn’t be friends.  It sounds brutal, but it’s true.  With the age differences and differences in interests, we would not have run in the same circles.  Meaning, I would not be friends with these two women.  It wouldn’t make me sad, because I wouldn’t know what I was missing out on… However, the thought makes me sad now.  I would miss having them in my life.

I am close enough with both of them that we can go long periods of time without talking and then suddenly fall back in step with each other when we do make that phone call or plan that visit.  For this reason, I am fine with the zero birthdays they are having this year.  They are milestones.  They are an excuse to fall back in step.  I went to a craft show on July 4th in Hannibal.  My husband found one of those wooden plaque signs that says Crazy Cousin Crew so we bought it.  Beth and Mel were my maid and matron of Honor at my wedding.  I intend to put the picture that was taken of the three of us on the plaque and hang it in our bedroom.

It dawned on me recently that my favorite moments in life include one or both of these amazing women.  Each are accomplished.  Each is smart.  Each is funny.  And each makes me a better person and my life is better with them in it.

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