How does someone transition from being one of your "Mommy friends" to someone you can call "sister?" How do they become part of your inner circle of trust? It's not something that is automatic or simple. And it's not something you can contrive. It happens when the everyday things in life unfold and bring unexpected news. Like when you're out camping with a group of friends and your little girl comes crying to you because she was lost. It happens when you bring something unexpected to the table that allow your friends to see the sort of person you are when it matters.
When I consider who my true and dearest friends are, they are the ones with whom I can completely let my (grey) hair down and not worry that they didn't get my true intention. They are the friends who are there through thick and thin (mostly thick as we transition our wardrobe from skinny jeans to spandex stretch pants), for better or worse (when the worst happens, they are always there to make us better), for richer or poorer (rich in laughter, poor in excuses), and when the inevitable and unthinkable happens.
This is an opportunity for me to tell my dearest friends how much they mean to me:
When my youngest daughter got lost from the restroom on our first camping trip, she came crying to me through her fear. My little girl was too shy to shout "WAIT FOR ME" after my new friend called out to a group of kids she escorted to the restroom. My little girl was left behind, and then got confused how to find her way back to our campsite. But she did find her way back. After I yelled with uncontrolled emotion about how careless that situation was, it became a turning point because that friend became one of my best friends. She understood that my little girl was scared. She understood that I was scared for my daughter. She completely got it. And because she did not get defensive, it made me appreciate her all the more. It could just as easily have been me forgetting someone else's little girl at the restroom. Things get crazy. Best friends keep each other sane. [continued on Yahoo! Shine]