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Do you remember me? I’ve been absent. It seems I’ve lost my blogging mojo. I’m hoping by following the prompts for the #MFRWauthor 52-Week Blog Challenge Blog Hop, I can get back into the groove. Fifty-two weeks? Ah, I know, I know, this is week FIVE and I’m just beginning. See what I mean? No mojo. #WritersLife

The topic is “My Best Friend.” This is the perfect topic for me to get the blogging fire restarted.

#MFRWauthor 52-Week Blog Challenge!

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“I don’t have a way to get home from work tonight. Do you know of anyone who lives in ____?”

This is what I asked my factory boss the day I started my first real job. I was eighteen. Not long after, he pointed out another girl working on a machine, and told me she’d drive me home since she lived in the same city. What? Wow, what a godsend.

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Stock Photo

Meet my best friend Margaret:

Later I learned my boss suggested to her to charge me X number of dollars for gas. Gladly! She never charged me, but I donated. Turns out, we didn’t live far from each other, but in a small town, that’s normal. We both got fired on the same day too. LOL. It also turned out Margaret went to work late a LOT, which meant so did I since I rode with her to and from work.

When we met at “the job” Margaret had a black VW Beetle called a Bug in those days. Wow, it Mary J McCoy-Dressel western romancewas cold in that vehicle in the winter. We hit it off right away, and became the best of friends. A few years later, I moved into her house as her roommate.

Maggie is what she wanted to be called later in life. I continue to call her Margaret. We are friends to this day. She was a tiny little thing. A beanpole is a good word. (Not so much today. Me neither.) I guess I was tiny at eighteen, too. Her hair was a pretty auburn. She has blue eyes. Her mother passed away when she was young, and she and her brothers and sisters were sent to live with different people. For a long time her siblings didn’t see each other. She has four brothers and two sisters.  We had gone to the same high school, though I hadn’t known her. I knew the girl who she lived with though–the daughter of her Godmother. Margaret is a couple years older than me.

Margaret was with me while I was in labor with my first son. She was terrified and ran out of the hospital room covering her ears. I remind her of that now and then just for the heck of it.  Afterwards, she swore never to have kids. But she had three miscarriages. I had another son. Then she had a son who was born so small, but today he is a healthy, handsome young man. She got divorced before her son was born. About four years later, she met a new guy, a Christian. She became a Christian.They got married on Valentine’s Day. She was at my baptism where my husband (ex now), boys, and I were all baptized together in the baptistery.

They had twin girls. Margaret always said, “I lost three babies, and then God gave me three babies.” I remember one Mother’s Day when her twins were young, I went to Mary J McCoy-Dressel western romancechurch with her for the Mother’s Day program, but I had one of the twins with me, so it was like I had a little toddler for a day. Margaret/Maggie has nine grandchildren! I don’t have any.

Margaret’s hobby is sewing and she’s great at decorating for parties. When she was feeling well, she did this for church weddings and graduations. She’d sew costumes for plays or programs, and her grandkid’s Halloween costumes, or clothes for their dolls. She and her husband used to take long motorcycle rides around the state of Michigan and surrounding states. My husband at the time had one, too, but I’d rather he had a horse instead of horsepower.

We had a lot of good times. Once, before either of us were married, we took a trip to Montreal to visit her sister and family. The trip there and back was so much fun. Neither of us spoke French! Try buying cigarettes when you don’t speak French. Yes, I was a smoker then. Cigarettes was probably the easiest thing to buy. Put your fingers up to your lips like you’re holding a cigarette. Universal?

I was a little wilder than her in those days, and on our way home from Montreal, we agreed on picking up two male hitchhikers in London who were about our age. I don’t remember where we dropped them off, but it was before we crossed the bridge to come back to Michigan. I don’t recommend picking up hitchhikers! We were lucky. They were nice.

Another time, I had moved to Missouri on my own. Another friend and I did this on the spur of Mary J McCoy-Dressel western romancethe moment. We hopped a ride with a couple guys we knew and off we went. Don’t worry, I left my mom a note. I came home once during that three-month period to get my car. The friend I had gone to Missouri with, her boyfriend, and I stayed with Margaret until we left for Missouri again. Three months later, I had everything I owned stolen. It was time for me to return home. Margaret flew to the St. Louis airport to drive back home with me. What a sweetie.

We both went on with our lives, and didn’t see each other often but that didn’t matter. For those of you who don’t remember what it was like to send letters in the mail, that’s how we communicated until we both got email.

Mary J McCoy-Dressel western romance

The last time I saw her in person was before I moved to where I am now. We would meet half way between where we lived and sit for hours in a restaurant to reminisce and catch up.

My best friend’s husband called me two days ago to tell me she was in the hospital. I wasn’t surprised, in fact, I had encouraged her to go to the ER. She’s had a tough year regarding her health. For months now, she has been miserable and doctors have scheduled needed tests so far into the future, that she lives in pain while they don’t seem concerned.

During the phone call he told me she went to her heart doctor again, and he sent her to the ER to get to the bottom of her illnesses. In addition, she has congestive heart failure, and had a defibrillator put in not long ago. She lives on oxygen now because of sarcoidosis in her lungs. Her husband said she has a whole team of doctors in the hospital to take care of her. She’s on an oxygen mask so I can’t really talk to her right now. He’ll keep me posted. In the meantime, I will continue to enjoy her friendship.

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I’m sorry I don’t have actual pictures of my best friend. Any I had in the past would need to be scanned, but my photos are stored in tubs in who knows what closet. She removed photos from her FB page, which she doesn’t use anyway, so I can’t get them there. If I posted one of my favorites with us, it would be where we’re leaving my kitchen toward the living room. She is holding my first infant son and I am behind her carrying two cups of coffee. The best I could do was to use stock images to enhance my post.

Have a beautiful day.  Enjoy the weekend. Thanks for visiting.

Mary~

UPDATE: After talking to my friend today, I learned that she is signing on with Hospice for when she will need them in the future. She is upbeat and positive. She said maybe she won’t need them for six months, or maybe never, so I like her positivity. Her lungs and heart are very weak right now, and she isn’t sure when she’ll get out of the hospital. Her oxygen level needs to be holding steady before they’ll send her home.

Second Update: Margaret passed away on April 22, 2017 at home with her family around her. She will be missed. 

Images from Pixabay.

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