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Jewish Journal

Lunch with the Enemy

by Ilana Angel

January 10, 2012 | 11:43 pm

I had lunch today with a new friend.  It’s rather interesting that we are friends actually because before I even met her, I was certain I would not like her.  She is young, beautiful, talented, Jewish, and while almost 20 years younger than me, in the same dating pool.  Of course I was not going to like her.

We knew of each other as we know a lot of people in common, and met at a holiday party in December.  I instantly liked her.  She was painfully unaware of how beautiful she was, which is both fascinating and charming.  It actually makes her even prettier.  If I looked like her I would walk around naked and stare at myself all day long.

We had a nice time together and when we came across each other at yet another holiday celebration, we made a plan to get together.  We spent a couple of hours today at lunch and I found myself feeling emotion for this girl.  We are years apart in age but I felt a kinship and connection to her that was sincere.

She is closer in age to my child than to me, and truth be told I could be her mother, but we connected as women and it was lovely.  We found ourselves sharing stories and secrets with each other in a way that was peaceful and funny.  There was no fear or judgment, but for some reason an honest concern from both sides.

It turns out that I had imagined she would be my enemy and in the end she was my friend.  I say enemy in terms of her being competition.  I happen to think I am fabulous but if I were a 50 year old man and could go out with her or me, I’m not sure my fabulousness would be able to outshine her because while beautiful, she is also fabulous.

Women spend a lot of time hating on each other and being driven by jealously and hate.  It’s a shame really because we are the same.  In talking about relationships and heartache, listening to her stories was familiar.  You could change her name for mine and the story would be the same.  A woman’s broken heart is universal.

We hurt the same, regret the same, dream the same, and mourn the same.  It might not be at the same level, but it’s there.  As women we have an understanding of each other’s depth of pain so talking about hurt feels liberating because we all get it. I was so sure she would be the enemy and in the end she will be my dear friend.

Instead of worrying that we date the same men, I will instead wish my friend well on her search for love.  She is exactly the kind of girl I hope my son marries one day.  You all know how I feel about him so you can imagine how great she is.  I look forward to our next lunch.  As for my son meeting someone just like her?  I’m keeping the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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