At the end of last year a couple of things happened that changed my world. If you’re a regular around here, you’ll already know about the passing of my lovely Aunty, but there was something else which affected me even more. One of my oldest school friends lost his twin brother two days before that, on my Aunty’s birthday as it happens. He was 43 years old. My age, more or less. How could this be?
I went to his funeral, on the day the long promised snow decided to put in an appearance. We stood in a field and listened to the humanist celebrant talk about his life. It was beautiful and touching and somehow quite magical to be there, among the trees, in the snow. He loved to make snow angels for his nephews and godchildren and we were invited to make some, right there, in his memory. If there is such a thing as a perfect funeral, then I think this was it.
Afterwards we went to a local hotel, in a town where I spent a lot of time in my late teens. I met up with a couple of old friends, one I’d been expecting to see and am in fairly regular contact with and another I hadn’t seen since we left school. It was great to see them and talk about our shared memories from those days. At the same time sad that it was something like this that had brought us back together again. It used to be weddings.
Spending time with the people who knew me way back when has made me reflect, probably a little more than is good for me, this past month. I’ve been thinking a lot about the people we were in our teens, the person I was then. The year I turned 17, I took my O levels, jumped out of a plane and travelled around India for a month. It was a pretty amazing year. Where did that fearless girl go? I want her back.
You might be wondering by now, just what this has to do with One Little Word. I’m getting there, honest!
What was great about those years, wasn’t just the things that I did, but the connections that I made with the people I met. It continued when I left home and started college. I met some fantastic friends, many of whom are still part of my life now, more than twenty years on. I don’t see them all quite as often as I’d like, but it’s good to know they are there.
This year I am going to make more of an effort to strengthen the connections with those friends and maybe make a few new ones. I’d also like to try and re-connect with my brave 17 year old self. I’m sure, if I dig deep enough, I can find her again. There you have it, my word for the year: connect.
I’m also hoping to connect with more people through my blog and I plan to post much more regularly and get into a blogging (and commenting) groove again. December is always a difficult month for us, but I only managed two posts last year and I didn’t do a lot better in January. Here’s to a new start.
The sky has just turned very black so I’m away to rescue my washing. I’ll be back on Wednesday, sharing my work space, wherever that may be. Another great way to connect with some other crafty folk out in blog land. Maybe I’ll see you there.