“Don’t you dare ever put me in that blog!”
So I didn’t.
I wrote about my family, my life, my past.
Careful to never mention,
someone who is so important in my life.
Then last week she says,
with not a hint of alcohol in her,
“When am I going to be in your blog,
you have written about everyone else!”.
So here it is.
A special blog post to someone,
who if I could I would have chosen to be family.
I am so lucky to have been blessed with amazing friends.
I live over 200km from family,
and when times were tough,
it was friends who got me through.
I have quite a few really wonderful friends,
and all are so supportive in bad times,
and great crack in good times.
However this one, who knows who she is,
is one of my oldest friends,
and one with whom I have shared so much.
I was in my early twenties when I had my first child.
My family lived hours away.
We had only one car,
and there was no local bus.
My work friends lived a distance away,
and were still single and childless.
I found myself alone and isolated.
Then by chance we met.
My daughter and her daughter were born four days apart.
She was a local Cork woman,
who had family to support her.
Yet she saw my isolation,
and in what I now know was typical of her,
she took me in hand.
In no time at all we were inseparable.
She already had a little boy,
as well as her baby girl.
Over the next few years,
we had two more children together.
Both had boys six weeks apart,
and then girls seven weeks apart.
I went on to have one more,
making it four each.
While the children were young,
we spent hours together,
and when we went home,
we spoke on the phone for ages.
Our husbands were bemused,
anticipating the day we would fall out,
but our friendship remained solid.
We reared our children together,
her four, my four and the two little ladies I minded.
The children were great friends,
and had a wonderful childhood,
playing and existing together,
in a large noisy group.
Then my past life came to light.
There was a spotlight thrown on me.
Unwelcome national attention came banging on my door,
trespassing on my happy home.
I crept back into myself,
and struggled to cope.
What was so private for me,
was on the radio and television,
and in every newspaper.
It was then my friend came into her own.
She was always there.
Without her I would never have got through.
Without her I shudder to think what might have happened.
But I got through,
and eventually began to blossom once more.
Then, as is the way with life,
the tables turned.
In the space of a few short months,
her only sibling, her sister got sick,
as did her mum.
After a dreadful year,
she lost her only sister aged 39,
three weeks later she lost her mum.
It was a harrowing time,
but she was an inspiration.
Depression and drowning in grief,
had no place in her life.
She grieved of course,
but picked herself up,
took her Dad in hand,
and her sisters husband and three young children,
and continued to live her life.
It has been easy not to feature her in a post,
because to begin to talk about her,
freezes my fingers as they type.
Because a friend such as she is a rare treasure.
Where would I begin?
I hit the jackpot the day we met.
My husband is my closest companion,
she who knows who she is, is my other.
This post is for you.
Know I will always appreciate you.
photo credit: Roxanne Milward via <a