Today I send birthday greetings to my sister in law, Lori, who 26 years ago became one of my very best friends. When I arrived in Albuquerque in July of 1981, a scared seventeen year old, newly married, pregnant with my first baby, and 2 thousand miles away from home, she reached out to me. She was nineteen, newly married, and also pregnant. She helped us find an apartment close to hers and referred me to a clinic for my prenatal appointments. We spent hours sitting on the floor of a sparsely furnished apartment playing Scrabble, eating popcorn, and drinking Tang while our young husbands worked. We shopped for groceries and baby supplies, endured the stares of strangers, and delivered our babies one month apart. Without her friendship I would have been totally lost and alone in an unfamiliar city. In December of that same year, James and I returned to New York state. It was almost as hard to come home as it had been to leave. It would be four years before Lori and I saw each other again, but of course we "wrote each other every day". (Okay, maybe not.)
Lori, thank you so much for being my friend. I love you.