In this moment, it is leaving my friends that is crunching my heart. As I sit here at my desk on another sleepless night, I am suddenly hit by the loneliness that I will feel when I step away from here. When the chaos subsides and I am again alone with my thoughts. In that moment when I let myself. Just. Stop.
This is for you my friends – all of you here who share my life by the sea.
Some of you are part of my DNA we have been together for so long. Some of you are newer. You found a way to filter into my life.
Some of you I see, well hardly ever! Yet I think about you all constantly – I do.
Some friends I see more frequently due to circumstance. Days get busy, time moves faster. Distractions get bigger. More urgent.
Remember before kids? Just remember when we were younger. The days spent sitting around chatting, hanging out. For those who were there – remember our girls nights? Remember ‘Grease’? (I cannot hear a song from that musical without remembering), and setting the BBQ on fire! Oh gosh, remember when I fell down those stairs and split my knee open! Hyperventilating into a paper bag as you tried to tell SB not to panic, just if he could hurry over as I needed to go to emergency…
To my oldest friends – I apologise for not making more effort to have more regular contact. But my goodness I love you all. You are family to me. Your essence seeps into my pores and makes me try harder, be stronger, feel more passionately. Just knowing you are around fulfils me.
I may not always call on you in times of need, but it is the knowing that I can, which gets me through.
To my newer friends. I feel so sad that our journey together is just beginning and I have to leave. I am terrified of losing you – please don’t stray. My life feels richer now than ever before and I am so excited by you.
My friends, I am writing you this letter because as I take steps closer to leaving my home by the sea I am feeling so sad to be leaving You. I know that in this age of technology we are more connected than ever. It is the contact time I will miss. It is the thought that our contexts will change and I will feel a stranger in your world when you tell me about your day. But please still tell me about your day. I want to know. I might not be able to cook you a glorious meal and sit contentedly as you eat and talk to me about your lives, or bake you sweet delights. But I am still here and I have every intention of creating the Virtual Dinner Party, thanks to Skype!
Oh T, how I will miss our Pizza nights. Drinking Malibu and wine and just being together while SB cooks us the most amazing pizza’s in our woodfire oven and you post every one to Facebook (along with some very dodgy boozy selfies). We just adore you, so does the cat (who still needs a new home!).
To my Mummy Friends. We watch our children play together, running around with squeals of delight penetrating our sleep deprived, exhausted brains as we sip coffee. It is these moments I remember that will break my heart. Not just for me, but for BB and FB. How they will miss their little friends. They probably won’t miss their friends touching their toys. But hopefully by the time we return they have got through that stage and have learnt how to ‘share’ a wee bit better.
When we get back babies and nappy-bottoms to squish will be gone, and little people will be in their place. Let’s make sure they don’t forget each other.
My Friends, you all share a connection – no not just me. You all share common values that are so important. Kindness, generosity of spirit, integrity. This is very important to me. I want you to know on the eve of my leaving here, how much I value you, cherish our friendship and honour our history.
My commitment to you all is this. Wherever I am, whatever I am doing, no matter what, I will always be your friend. I will always be on your side and I will always be here for you. It might be by Skype, text and email but you know what, the intention is the same.
And if you are really in crisis, come visit me and I will take you shopping!
I’m not saying goodbye. This isn’t the end. I am just realising that I don’t do enough to honour our relationship together. I have been taking you for granted.
So here is my declaration of change for all to see.