We called each other PLLAATSAB for quite a while. You must realize that we have known each other practically since birth. Our mothers were best friends. They met when our older siblings started preschool. Soon our mothers were playing bridge together, doing dishes and mopping their kitchen floors while talking on the phone. We were keen learners and it didn’t take long for us to make the kind of bond little girls make.
We spent three years at Girl Scout Camp in the San Bernadino mountains learning how to sing camp songs, eat cafeteria food and fight like girls. We were pretty much sisters in the sense that sometimes we loved each other and sometimes we betrayed (that would be me more than she—truth be told). In our teen years we grew apart partly because we lived 100 miles apart and this was before Facebook, IM, email and texting. We got "yelled at" for calling long-distance too often. Our summer plans stopped after ages 12-13 so we really didn’t get to spend as much time together.
We did, however, spend most every 4th of July together. That was our deal as families. At the beach, at someone’s home, in a driveway we would light fireworks, play with sparklers, swim and eat barbecue. I don’t know that it was every year but in retrospect if feels like it was every year! Even after we moved 50 miles away, then 50 more miles away, we continued to meet as families at least once or twice a year.
As time passed we continued to move apart. She is Jewish, I am Mormon. I left the state to go to school (college) she stayed close to home. I went on Study Abroad to London, she started sending me “anonymous” postcards from all over the world. I left for Japan on a mission, she showed up at the airport to wish me goodbye. I continued to get postcards, I had a clue but didn’t know for sure they were coming from her until I got home.
We were both still going on with our lives; I got married. Then my brothers died.
She came to the funeral because she was almost as much of their lives as I was. She and her family were nearly as close to family as any extended family. They were hurting and heartbroken nearly as badly as we all were. It was a horrible time and we re-bonded. At the time Superman and I were moving out to Antelope Valley and she was living in San Jose getting ready to get married herself.
She asked me to be in her wedding and from that time until today we have talked nearly every day. We’ve been through moves, separations, divorce, childbirth, graduations, difficult children, changes in our parents lives, sibling garbage and everything in between. We are sisters. We are basically the same, on the inside.
She is my “Internal Doppleganger.” A doppelganger is your copycat, dittoed person in the world. She is a dark haired, olive skinned, Hungarian Princess; I am White-Anglo-Saxon-not quite Protestant, light-ish haired (blonde as a child), Irish & Heinz 57 “American.” We do not look alike, but we do think alike. We don’t fight anymore. We “discuss” and we both are enlightened. It’s wonderful.
While reading Plato I came across something that my BFF had previously shared with me and I forgot. It’s the story of the Split-Aparts.
Plato's theory is a mythic story that says that many, many moons ago, the human species was made up of androgynous creatures, meaning they embodied both male and female sexuality. The gods split these creatures into two parts, creating male and female humans. The belief is that each one of us, on a deeply subconscious level, knows that something is missing within ourselves, and we seek wholeness.
So the last two letters are for Split-Apart, not in a romantic sense, but in a shared mind sense.
So my fun little acronym PLLAATSABIDSA is for my BFF aka Gypsy. She reaches the part of my mind that Superman doesn’t and I feel blessed every day to have her as part of my life!