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Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Thinking of You Thursday

When I graduated from High School in New Jersey, I left the state in kind of a hurry. When my acceptance to the University of Virginia came, I counted the days until I could go. And before anybody makes any smart ass comment about wanting to run from Jersey too, I just want to make it clear that it was not because I had anything against New Jersey.

I had some demons I was running from and I couldn't get out fast enough. I don't like to confront things. I have always been much better at running away.

But in my haste to leave, I didn't realize how much I would also leave behind. And how important those things, mainly the people, would come to mean to me.

One of those people is my friend, Kate*.

I grew up with Kate. We were friends since the 3rd grade and when she moved down to our little Central Jersey suburb from Brooklyn, NY, she wooed me in with her exotic little accent.

She pronounced four as "faw." Water was "wat-uh."

How cool is she? I thought. And so I immediately decided to eradicate the letter "r" from my vocabulary so I could be more like her.

Kate was beautiful. I had been battling the curly rat's nest on my head and no banana clip in the world would help. She waltzed in with her swingy, long, sandy brown hair and made me realize I was not destined to be a shampoo commercial model.

We stayed close throughout elementary school, middle school and high school. We often ran with different circles of friends but our bonds were tight and our history deep. She was the Captain of the Cheerleading team. I was more the President of National Honor Society. She went to cool parties and dated hot football players. I focused on practicing my essay writing so I could get into a good school.

(yes - yes. she was the dorky one).

Kate definitely had more social clout than I did, so I was often able to still get included in events that were way too cool for me, just by association. I made sure to take advantage of our relationship to the fullest. I mean, if she was going to work so hard at being cool and ending up on the homecoming court, I had to make sure all her hard work was for something.

I am kidding. The reality is, Kate never had to "work" for that. It was pretty effortless and it's kind of easy to fall in love with her.

But once I left for college, Kate and I slowly lost touch. Email, Facebook and social media that ties us all together today was not a reality then. We would make an effort to reconnect but over time, we lost touch.

Days became months became years.

When our ten year High School reunion was around the corner, I decided I needed to reach out to my old friend. Her parents' phone number is one I still remember and so I thought I would call it and see if her parents could give me her number.


It was Kate.

Her voice reminded me of sunshine, hopscotch on the playground, skinned knees, my middle school crush (unrequited), cartwheels, eating Jolly Ranchers on the school bus, pool parties, Senior Prom, bad Jersey hair (mostly mine, not hers), hairspray, Bon Jovi, Dylan McKay from 90210, New Kids on the Block (she like Joey MacIntyre, I was a Jordan Knight fan myself), the REAL Jersey Shore and her mother's awesome Italian food.

It was home.

Since then, Kate and I have made a much better effort to stay in touch. Though I am not fortunate enough to see her as often as I would like, I will make every effort to have her in my life. Because friendships like that are too precious to ever let go.

So why am I telling you all this?

Because today, I am asking for your help with something.

I don't really write about faith and God over here. Other friends can speak about their relationship with God in a way that I just feel ill qualified to do. But I am grateful that they can so eloquently write or speak things I have such trouble expressing myself. I am thankful that they are able to express what I am still trying to work through myself. When they are close to God, I feel less guilty for my own lack of piety.

The truth is, I feel somewhat like an impostor when I venture into that arena.

But right now, I am looking to God. And I am looking to you.

You see, Kate was due to deliver her second child in February of this year. In early December, I received a call from another old high school friend informing me that Kate's water had broke. Two days later the baby came.

Very, very early.

Kate had a beautiful baby girl. At birth she weighed 1.4 pounds.

Kate, her husband, and son, along with the rest of their family and friends are praying every day. And the baby is turning out to be a real fighter. She has had some ups, she has had some downs.

But every day she fights.

It may be some time before the baby comes home from the hospital. In the meantime, Kate and Bryce are working, running their household, raising a child at home, while trying to hold it all together while being there for their little blessing, who is showing the world what a steadfast fighter she is as each day passes.

Friends and family, can you pray for Kate's baby girl? I have faith that she will be a strong, beautiful force to be reckoned with just like her mother was. IS.

I know you, like me, are summoning up all your energy to pray for the people of Haiti. While praying, please also keep Kate and her family in your thoughts.

Whether you are Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, Buddhist - I ask you to put your hands together and summon up all the positive energy you can and just pray for my friend and her family. Pray that one day that this baby girl will kick some butt and takes some names as she becomes the Captain of the Cheerleading team or President of National Honor Society. Or both. That she be gracious as she turns down dates from the hot high school football dudes because she is too busy writing her own essays for HARVARD and that she is blessed with her mother's keen sense of style. (Bryce, no offense).

Every night I carry the image of Kate's baby's little hands in my head as I say my own prayer.

Thank you, friends.

And thank you, Kate. I love the fact that you are back in my life and I cannot wait till I can hug your baby girl.

(* Names have been changed. And any high school friends who can figure out who Kate is, please keep her in your thoughts and prayers - I don't really think she can handle too many emails/calls right now. It's a bit crazy so the best way to help her right now is to just pray. Thank you guys.)


Sara Plays House said...

Sending lots of positive thoughts to Kate's baby girl and her family. A friend of mine delivered her baby boy in November. He was due in January. He's now home with his Mom and Dad. I know every situation is different, but it's always nice to hear a happy outcome.

The Only Girl said...

I'll be thinking of your friend.

Masala Chica said...

Sara - thank you. I know that every situation is different too, but every story with a happy ending is so nice to hear and so reassuring right now. So glad to hear your friend's baby is now home.

Masala Chica said...

Thanks, Cher.

jessalyn said...

i can't even begin to imagine what this must feel like as a parent. my best friend's baby was 6 weeks early and under 4 lbs at birth. but he is now 11.5 pounds, and healthy.
i am sending every prayer and positive thought in the world to your friend, and that her little girl will be home, healthy & thriving soon.

Nahl said...

I just prayed for her.
If so many people pray together, God is bound to hear. InshaAllah.
Also, I hate the popular girls. How do they manage being so awesome?!

Shell said...

Saying prayers for her baby.

Kate@And Then I Was a Mom said...

My prayers and thoughts are with them.

Anna See said...

Oh Kiran, I am praying for Kate and her baby.

Monique-aka-Surferwife23 said...

I just had a friend from high school deliver her baby at 24 weeks gestation back in on Sept 1 when babe was due mid December.

We all rallied around mom and baby and baby is happy and healthy at home with mom and dad today.

Prayers and positive thoughts are very powerful.

Your friend will be in my thoughts.

Katie said...

This made me cry. I will definitely be thinking about and praying for your friend!

Masala Chica said...

Thank all of you guys for your reassuring words and your prayers. Its a crazy day, full of many prayers all around, I know.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.


Karls said...

You're a good friend Kiran - a true friend... and it sounds like Kate is just as lucky to have you back in her life.

I am sending good thoughts and vibes her way!

DG at Diary of a Mad Bathroom said...

Of course, my thoughts and prayers are with her and her family.

Anonymous said...

Nearly 10 years ago, one of our friends had a very similar situation...she went into premature labor and had a baby boy @ 24 weeks! It was difficult for a while, but he is now a healthy happy 10 yr old!! Kishan, his name, was a blessing for his parents. Suddenly, even though they would spend endless hours each day at the hospital with Kishan, the ... See Moreparents started getting much more attention at work and their work was being appreciated as never before!

It took a lot of prayers, havans, blind faith on the days that all seemed hopeless and parents that never lost their positivity!

My prayers and heartfelt good wishes to Kate and her baby girl!


Michael Halbrook said...

What a beautiful post on behalf of your friend and her baby, Kiran. We'll be keeping Kate's baby in our prayers here as well.

Ruby said...

Will most certainly pray for this baby and her family in hopes of her pulling thru to be a healthy storng baby girl!
BTW im set to move to jersey in may im a bit overwhelmed ive always been a california girl

Caroline said...

I will be keeping your friend in my prayer and I think you write of matters of faith very, very well. Thank you do for addressing Haiti.

I'm really glad to "know" you and your capacity for compassion for others.

Bill Schimmel said...

Kiran, after spending a few weeks in the NICU with our girls, I fully believe it is a place of miracles without mentioning the word god or prayer. Sending good thoughts Kates way. I know of at least two infants born weighing less than a pound that are now thriving.

JP said...

I was going to click one of your buttons, but "funny" "interesting" or "cool" just didn't seem to fit.

I will certainly light a candle for Kate, Bryce, her son and beautiful daughter.

theschmuck said...

Will keep them in me prayers.Definately.

Ams said...

I will be praying.
Praying for the little babies strength, strength for her parents to get through this hard time...
Many many prayers!

Stephanie Faris said...

Awww! I recently was able to see a friend from high school again and it was so nice to reconnect. Nobody seems to "get" us like those from our past.

Amy said...

My son was born 10 wks early and spent his first 5 wks on this earth in the NICU. It is a frightening and lonesome feeling when you have a child in the NICU.

Today he is 18 months old and a force to be reckoned with:) He's funny and energetic and healthy!

I am praying that Kate's baby girl is in the same place a year and half from now. All my prayers and well wishes to Kate and Bryce!


MiMi said...

Praying for your friend and her precious baby girl. And her entire family.
I recently reunited with my BFF from highschool and all those things you said Kate's voice brought back for you, also came to me when I first saw her again.

Annie @ astonesthrowfrominsanity said...

Of course I will pray! But, I wanted to say thank you to you for putting into words what I so often feel when it comes to my relationship with God. :) I know on my blog, I am usually a bit of a smart ass, but deep down, I am searching too. :)

Lemon Gloria said...

I will, I definitely will!

Salt said...

This is such a beautiful and thought provoking post. I'm so glad that you were able to renew your friendship.

My thoughts and prayers are definitely with your friend and her daughter and the rest of her family. I'm sending every good vibe I have her way!

Allyson said...

I will be praying for Kate, her baby, and her family as they play this very intense and emotional waiting game. I was due Feb. 22nd when my water broke on Sept. 15th. Obviously, the baby did not make it...but my best friend also went into labor...about 3 months early and little Reed is doing SO well. They kept him at the hospital for about 8 weeks, until he could fight infections on his own and had gained weight. He is truly a miracle and they happen everyday. It's so difficult to hand it all over to God when you feel like something that was YOUR responsibility is suddenly fighting for its life. You feel so helpless. But God will take care of Kate and her family. The best you can do is to check on her and listen to her and not try to fix it. Just listen. This could be one of the hardest things she will ever have to go through. And that makes you a friend that she will have forever if you just stick with her through this. My prayers are with you all.

Wendy said...

Will be sending up many orayers and positive thoughts for your friend, her little girl and famly. What a wonderful post...sometimes in our haste to grow up and move on we forget those that made us what we are. Glad you got to reconnect...

meredith said...

kiran, this post really touched me. i am most certainly praying. praying for you and your sweet friend's baby girl and family. praying for God's divine intervention and a true miracle. i pray that that sweet baby continues to be strong and fight. i love the way you write and i love how you unabashedly do it so open and freely.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

Oh, I will definitely hold this precious little girl up in prayer. Blessings to you, too!

Sarah said...

This is beautiful, and it made me cry. I will pray for your friend and her little fighter.

Masala Chica said...

Everybody - I am so touched that you took the time to read that and to add your thoughts, prayers and blessings to the ones that have obviously been plentiful the past few weeks for this precious baby girl.

I know that through this blog, I have met some wonderful, amazing women who genuinely care for other women. It's a giving community and a loving one. thanks for sharing some of that love today.

namaste - all of you.

Anonymous said...

I am not a religious woman. Never was.

BUT, I do have a brother that was born 2 pounds 2 ounces at 6 months. While he suffered from Hydrocephalus - and still has a shunt in his brain, he's ok. And Kate's baby will be too. I'll think of her and the little one as often as I can until the update comes in that all is well.

With love,


Serenityville said...

That is a brilliant post, and I send all my power (a.k.a. love) in the universe to your friend and her family.

Nick said...

I'll be praying.

Nikita said...

Kiran, I really do hope Kate's baby grows stronger every second and continue being the fighter that I'm sure she is.

Shandal said...

Kiran you write so beautifully and clear and from your heart. Thoughts and prayers are with your friend and baby.

Mommy Taylor said...

I'll be praying for your friends family. I can't imagine what they're going through right now...

kys said...

You are a beautiful, sweet soul.

Yes, I will pray for your friend and her baby.

Brigitte said...

Your talent in writing is beautiful, witty, and entertaining. Thank You for such a wonderful description of "Kate". And thank you especially for the call for prayers. Love to you and your family. From one spiritual mama to another. peace. Brigitte

Sadia said...

Prematurity is terrifying. I'm thinking of Kate and her little one.

My twins were born 2 months early, just over 3 pounds. Today, they're healthy precocious three-year-olds, and no one would guess that we weren't sure whether they'd make it.


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