In a few days time, it will have been a whole year since the tragic death of an old friend of mine. I’ve thought of Michela a lot in the past 12 months, and quite honestly I still can’t really believe she’s not here. It’s terrible to say that I’ve thought of her more in the last 12 months, now that she’s no longer with us than I did in the last couple of years. Not for any other reason than I expected everything to stay the same, and that eventually we’d get the chance to meet up again and reminisce about old times. But as we all know, time just keeps ticking on and we presume there will plenty of time to get back in touch, to arrange that visit, to make that call. Of course everyday life just gets in the way, and we keep plodding on, as we should. As much as we’re all told to live each day as if it’s our last, most of the time we don’t. Personally I’m not sure I want to live that way; it sounds a bit stressful to me. Every now and then, however, it’s good to take stock, to sit back and reflect on life.
It feels like a lot has happened in the last year. On the one hand a relationship that had slowly become a bigger part of my life sadly started to drift away, but then other relationships & friendships have become stronger as the months have passed. Like I said in a previous post, people come in to your life for a reason, and there is always something to learn from it, both about yourself, and about other human beings and how they act/react. I’ve always been a big believer in ‘what is meant for you won’t go by you’, and as such I think it makes anything that could be quite difficult to deal with, a bit easier in time. When I think about Michela, and my other wonderful friends Jackie & Jo, I wouldn’t have met them at all if the 2-day trip to Uluru & King’s Canyon I was scheduled to take hadn’t been overbooked, resulting in me being upgraded to a 3-day trip instead. This meant I left Alice Springs a day later than planned, but thankfully I ended up on the same bus as the girls. That was 18 years ago, wow!! Sometimes the smallest, seemingly insignificant occurrences in our lives can have some of the biggest, most important repercussions.
I’ve said on here before that I’ve been really lucky to live the life I have. At least I think I probably have; if not, well, I’m saying it here now. I’ve been very fortunate. Yes, there have been some tough times, as there are in all lives lived, but overall I’m so lucky to say the balance of happiness has always been in my favour (sounds like a kind of positive Hunger Games, ha!). Of course we don’t live our lives in isolation, and often it’s the struggles other people go through that can be so difficult to witness. I’ve always thought that it’s easier to deal with trauma if you’re going through it yourself than to watch other people suffer, especially when you can’t really do anything to change it. I’ve seen close friends go through some awful things in the past year, and it’s heartbreaking. You want to make everything alright, but you can’t. All you can do is be there as a friend.
And yet, while sometimes life can feel a little bit bleak, that’s not the overarching feeling that I want to convey, or how I really feel at all. As I’ve said, the positive far outweighs the negative in my life, and for that I’m very fortunate & grateful. Last year I spent the whole time stressing out about turning 40, but you know all that stressing afforded me the time to take stock of my life, and in doing so it became much easier for me to recognise and appreciate everything I had, instead of worrying about what I didn’t have. Now I’m nearly 41, I’ve barely thought about being 40, and I couldn’t be happier with my age! I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past 18 months; I’ve fucked up at times but mostly I think I’ve done a pretty good job. I have unending gratitude for all the wonderful people I have in my life, my family and friends. I don’t tell people enough but I love you all, and thank-you for making life rather fabulous 🙂
So as much as this is a sad time, thinking of a dear friend who is no longer with us, it is also the time to think back on the fond memories we shared, the laughs we had, and to celebrate a life lived with gusto and passion. While the world is a sadder place without beautiful wee Micky, she damn sure made my life all the better for being in it, and for that I’ll always be thankful. I raise a glass to my wee friend, with love xxx