I am a Jewish woman. We come equipped with a guilt meter that exceeds most peoples. Things make us feel bad, certainly, but we are far better at making YOU feel bad for making US feel bad.
Jewish husbands don’t stand a chance in hell against our powers.
Today, I am feeling guilt. I have a very special girlfriend in my life. We’ve been friends forever, if forever could equal about 14 years. She’s not my best friend. She’s more than that. She’s like a baby sister to me. I am 14 years older than she is…but have learned more from her than I have from most people my own age. I met her in college. She was kind of the odd girl out. Funky colored hair. Weird clothes. Strange taste in music. And I was drawn to her immediately.
We had ZERO in common. She was a kid out of high school. I was a mom of two going back to college for my nursing degree. What I did discover is that she had an absolutely wicked sense of humor, a crazy zest for life and a total “What the fuck ever, Dude” attitude.
In essence, she was me…25 years earlier, before marriage, divorce, kids, career and life got in my way.
Her husband was my husbands best friend. It was such a natural fit. He was kind of eclectic and different. So was she. So when my husband and I started dating, we thought these two would be a match made in heaven. And, as cupid would have it, they were. They were married in 2001, a year before my husband and I were.
Now, we’re both moms. She calls me for parenting advice. I give it to her easily, readily, as her little one is only 6. Mine are 22 and 14. Been there and done that with the 6 year olds. I adore her son. If anything in the world were ever to happen to my girlfriend, I would embrace him as my own without a second thought, making sure he had everything in his life that his mom would ever want for him.
Yesterday, she came over my house with a problem. A marital problem. Was it a huge problem? Well, it depends where you are sitting. But, for her, yes…it was a huge problem. And, for the first time, I had no answers for her. I had some basic advice, things she already knew, because she is hella smart, but nothing concrete. Nothing she could walk away with and feel complete sense of satisfaction. The subject moved onto other things, like politics, imbeciles who can’t understand a health care bill, Ron Paul, Gwar (don’t google that, you’ve been warned) and various other things. Yet still, in the back of my mind, I was a little heartsick that through all the coffee, cigarettes and conversation, I had not “fixed” my friends problem.
She means the world to me. And today, I know she’s home with a headache that more than likely as brought on by stress and sadness. I want to punch her husband really hard in his face. She’s a great woman. An awesome mother. She cooks, she cleans, she works part time, takes care of that baby of theirs…everything that my husband wishes I would do but don’t.
I am feeling a tremendous amount of guilt. Surely there is something I could have done, something I could have said. But, I got nothing. Nothing.
She came to me with her heart in her hands…and I got nothing.
Still, I cling to the little bit of hope that the six hours we spent together talking and laughing brought a bright spot into her day, at least for a little while. I hope she knows she’s loved. I hope she knows she’s cared about.
And most of all, I hope she knows that I would brown bag her husband in a parking lot upon request. Urban dictionary describes “brown baggin'” as putting a bag over an ugly chicks face before banging her. But, New Yorkers know that Brown Baggin’ someone means filling a paper sack full of soda cans and beating someone relentlessly with it, until the bag breaks.
She best know I’d break a nail for her anyday.