I am still thinking about the delightful time I had at Mendham Books in Mendham, New Jersey. First, it is always wonderful to actually meet with the people who buy your book. We were fortunate that day to have My First Best Friend sell so well. One person, whom I didn't get to meet, bought 25 books. Another had me sign 13 books she wanted to give to a group of 40-year-old friends celebrating 27 years together. Being part of of such a fun time made me very happy.
One of the gentleman who came with his wife and both their families reminded me again of how important mothers are in our lives--and not just our very own. His mother's first best friend was also his, he said. He could often talk to her about things that maybe he wouldn't bring up with his own mom. It was a special secret society. Another friend recently told me the same thing about his mom's FBF. "I'd stop by and see her often," he said. "And we talked about so many things."
My sister and I had a family friend, Julie, who was our "very own" keeper of secrets. Julie never had children of her own, so she "adopted" us. She was a part of our lives for a time. I used to walk our little Scottie dog to her house and sit in her immaculate white kitchen while she made wee mince pies. I got one right out of the oven. There always seemed to be some wonderment in that almost magic cottage.
A bonus in doing the research for My First Best Friend was hearing the heart-warming stories of love and attention from "second mothers." The "mom next door" was often an endearing presence, contributing in quiet and unseen ways. Just ask JoAnn, (page 92) who credits her FBF Bernadette's mother with being her role model for mothering her own three daughters. "She never raised her voice," JoAnn remembers. But it is far more than that; a little girl remembered of her little friend's mom--it was the open heart beyond the open door.
With Mother's Day approaching, share your stories of that second mother whose love enriched your life. I'm sure they will enrich us, too.