The day was a bit easier …. though my mind strayed to the “wonder what people are doing” area a few times. I did ‘accidentally’ [or subconsciously?] touch the Facebook icon on my phone in the morning … only there confronted by the faceless Rin Tin Tin type icon… which awakened me to the fact I’m not on it….
But I definitely didn’t miss it quite so much, I stopped grinding my bleddy teeth in determination, and my index finger and thumb weren’t so itchy …. but I put it down to the fact of having friends to visit for a few hours, that I hadn’t seen for a very long time.
One of my oldest friends came to see me, with his daughter and son in law. We hadn’t seen each other for a couple of years…. mainly down to me, and the struggle I had dealing with my ‘failure’… being homeless, bankrupt and virtually broken in pieces. (Though I wasn’t quite aware of how fecking broken I was until much later). The ‘benefit’ of keep a diary/blog.
Anyway, by the time I began to feel better, I then started to feel sodding guilty that I had neglected some friends.
It was only a year or so earlier to my ‘withdrawal’, that his wife, one of my best friends, had suddenly died. We were all devastated. It was a horrible time, I was tasked with writing and reading her eulogy. Now that was bleddy hard… but he and his two girls had begged me to do it.., you can’t refuse a request like that. They all struggled to deal with it, I was there for them as much as I could be for many months. Then I watched them starting to get on with a new daily life, so stepped back… and then a few months later, I made the epic mistake of getting the pub…. and the rest is fucking history as they say …. a painful history…
I met the family 46 years ago, when we became neighbours… and we have been through everything together… including my two marriages and divorces.. I’ve always been ‘Auntie’ to their children, seen them marry, divorce, remarry, have their children, and watched them all grow up, go through so much crap and come out the other side. Their family was my family and vice versa…. but when my friend died, and my own ‘preoccupation’, the hub of the wheel broke.. we drifted.
And Facebook wasn’t much use, as my friend didn’t hold much store by it, one daughter who used it, had gone blind through traumatic illness very suddenly, and her husband used it sporadically, as he was her full time carer…. and so on.
Because I withdrew from physical contact with people, I made little effort to get in touch … and because I hadn’t heard much from them, I eventually assumed they were pissed off with me …
How wrong assumptions can be! It was nothing of the sort.., it was because they were getting on with doing their stuff. They thought I had been getting my birthday/Christmas cards…. nope…. as we discovered yesterday, when trying to find me… they had the wrong address!! Doh.
The upside is, it was a bleddy wonderful four hours, of catching up and happy memories. My friend is over 80, and an inspiration..,, he now has Parkinson’s… and to quote him “I won’t bleddy die from it”. He is still active, going on numerous breaks with his sister, going to the theatre regularly, still plays pool badly, still does his beloved carpentry… though given up badminton because his knees hurt.., but taken up carpet bowls instead.
His blind daughter is equally an inspiration… she recently won a gold medal and several cups for shooting! (Laser I might add!) … she still relies on the help of others for her general needs…. but she ain’t remotely feeling sorry for herself.
The moral here, is that there’s always someone worse off than yourself… and reassuring you that there is another way to cope in a better way than think you can.
They loved where I live and my paradise. The friendship re-cemented. Onwards and upwards for us all.
So thanks to my morning and afternoon walkies (when the Scillies came a bit nearer and waved at me), and to the friendships that will never be broken, the day was wonderful. All without the aid of social media.
What a fdcking result!! Happy old bear 🐻