On the eve of my friend’s anniversary

I have just finished watching an incredible and timely film, What We Did On Our Holiday. Still crying. Amazing film.

Mum and dad try to hide their impending divorce from his father as they journey with their three incredibly insightful kids to Scotland to celebrate his father turning 75. Played by Billy Connolly the grandfather is the hero who unites his family and saves his grandchildren through an unusual death – no spoilers here. 

Tomorrow is the anniversary of my friend’s death. It’s been three years. It feels like just yesterday. For three years, every day, she has been in my thoughts, and I still talk to her often. If only to just acknowledge her existence. 

This film though, sent to me by the gods because I’ve avoided it for days and couldn’t resist any longer, was hilarious in a sad way. It’s message deceptively simple. We need to accept each other’s ridiculous because that’s love, and we need to live our lives. Live them. Really live them. 

That’s what Nat did. 

She lived. 

After concerns that she wouldn’t be able to have children, she carried two boys to term. And in gratitude for her blessing, she built the best, most stable lives for those kids that she could. And she loved her husband with everything she had. 

She made her life count. 

I am so blessed that she embraced me into her family, and forgave me my ridiculous. She knew what was important, really important. At the end of the day, family counts. Love sustains. 

And her life beyond this physical world helps to sustain me and remind me to serve my dreams. And I try to make my life count. I always have, but now I appreciate how tenuous our time here can be. 

Tomorrow is not guaranteed. 

The present is all that we have, and all that we can rely on. I do what I need to do. I give to myself more. And as a result, I can give better to others. 

But man, I miss her. Every day. Grief doesn’t get easier; we learn to live with it as part of our lives.

The loss of a friend, a mother, a wife, a sibling, an aunt. The loss of a child or a baby, a pet. The grief is there. Rather than drown in it though, we must persevere to use it to fuel our life force, our spark, our determination to live better, live more, live presently. 

I love you Nat. Your life was a treasured gift to many; your death too. 

Always in my heart my dear friend ❤️

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