Not that long ago Auntie Yoli wasn't even on my radar. In fact I can't even remember meeting her for the first time. She just appeared in this gaggle of people Michael had started hanging out with at work. Then before I knew it we were socializing with this gaggle at wing nights, local festivals and in our home. It was a fun group and I loved spending time with them even if I felt a little left out when the conversation eventually turned to rants about work. The thing was Auntie Yoli didn't stand out anymore or less than anyone else in the gaggle. In fact the argument could be made that out of all of them I was closer to Karen, only because she was often on our way to wherever we were headed so we'd pick her up.
Then that thing happened that usually happens to work gaggles, people move on to new things in their lives and the gaggle grew smaller and smaller. And before I knew it the only constant left was Auntie Yoli. Even though, technically she was Mike's friend first, Auntie Yoli and I became BFF's too. If I am Gayle to Robin's Oprah then I am Nicole to Auntie Yoli's Paris. You before they did The Simple Life and started hating each other. Oh and now that they're both dating the Madden boys and I assume have patched things up.
Over the years Auntie Yoli has done all the things required to fall into that best friend category. She's loved me and my kids. We've cried some and laughed a whole lot more. She's been there for the highlights, the lowlights and all the in betweens. And when Maya finally arrived in our lives she was amongst the core of our support system as we navigated those scary first few weeks. When it came time to pick Maya's godmother, Auntie Yoli's name was on both our lips. It was an honour we were only too happy to share with her.
Tonight we were at a barbecue at Auntie Yoli's with some of that original gaggle. We shared some food and lots of laughs, but for all the fun there was a tinge of sadness, at least for me as I sat and wondered when we would all be together again. You see tomorrow Auntie Yoli is driving three hours away to look at an apartment. An apartment she plans on moving to in a few weeks time. Did I mention it was three hours away? Three hours! I can barely think about it. I can't imagine that there will be no more movie nights, dinners, barbecues, or bonfires. No shopping. No hanging out. And I'm sure there was a clause in the contract that forbade long distance Godmothering.
Auntie Yoli is attempting to help me keep it in perspective by pointing out that this move could have taken her half way across the country, but when she's not going to be in our day to day lives there doesn't seem to be much difference between a few hundred and a few thousand kilometres. And I can't even begin to express how much I am going to miss her. How much the girls will miss her.
How lucky am I to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.
~ Carol Sobieski and Thomas Meehan (Annie)