But no matter our differences, Pat and I are bonded for life. Through marriages and pregnancies, divorces, children, dying parents, and all the joys and heartaches of life, our friendship just keeps getting better with time.
It's truly an unusual relationship. While we started out with the same beliefs in Catholic school, but over the years Pat could no longer handle the guilt and completely transformed her ideas. She is now completely convinced she was an American Indian in her previous life and is very much in touch with all the energies known (and unknown) to humankind, while I remain a devout Catholic and practice religiously with only slight modifications.
I love to go to church, and I pray to Jesus, the Virgin Mary, and all the saints who I believe can keep me safe. Pat prefers to go to sweat lodges where she perspires until she almost passes out, and then believes the spirits have blessed her, while she visualizes eagles flying above her head. I too am a very spiritual person; I just don't don feather earrings and obsess about bonding with dead friends while swimming with dolphins.
While I have three children, and now two beautiful granddaughters, Pat has a dog and three cats. It can really get annoying when she doesn't understand my responsibilities and assumes that we all want to live the carefree, responsibility-free life she has made her own for the past thirty years. She travels and makes impulsive decisions while I agonize over every one.
Though our relationship sometimes has its ups and downs, it has lasted longer than any of our marriages, and ultimately, all of our disagreements work themselves out. We share our inner thoughts, dreams, and hopes for ourselves with each other, and we know that our deepest darkest secrets are sacred.