Monday 4 February 2013

One Little Word

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.


Ladkyis said...

We felt that way in our family so when my father died ten years ago we began to organise family reunions just to ensure that we weren't only meeting at funerals. It is always good when something good comes out of sadness

Estelle Grace Tudor said...

I think it is great that you are being positive and looking forward to the year. I'm sure will find that brave girl, seems to me that she is just under the surface :)

Big hugs, Estelle xx

Estelle Grace Tudor said...

sorry meant 'I'm sure YOU will find'


Jo said...

Sorry about your losses, the funeral sounds as perfect as a funeral can be. Good choice of word and I hope you make lots of connections this year x

Jane said...

So sorry for your loss, I look forward to seeing you connect.

Sian said...

I'm really sorry for this loss Fi.

scrappyjacky said...

Sorry for your loss,Fiona

Amy said...

Your post really sums up a lot of how I'm feeling this year too. 2012 was really rotten for so many people I know and speak to - I used a lot of our holiday time to switch off and reconnect, it was wonderful and it gave me the time to reconsider the importance of connections.
Thanks for sharing your thoughts :-)

Sandra said...

It's such a good word Fi, and I love your take on it to connect through your blog and with old and new friends. This post is so interesting, I'm really sorry for the losses you've gone through recently, life's so not fair sometimes.

Julia said...

This was lovely to read even if the topic was sad. So sorry to learn of your losses. I had a similar experience when a mother from my ante-natal group passed away and was the same age as me. It made me grab life with both hands and not let go! I look forward to "connecting" with you this year through cyber space and in real life xx

Deb @ PaperTurtle said...

I just received your email so I popped back over to have a look, and have just read your lovely post about your OLW. I'm so sorry to hear about your friend (and your aunt), but it makes my heart glad to know that he was honored in such a loving way. As hard as my mom's funeral was, I felt that way afterwards too - like it was the perfect funeral. It was wonderful to be with old friends, and family I hadn't seen in so long.

Bless you, Fiona, and I love that your word is CONNECT. I think it's perfect!

Carin McDonough said...

So sorry about your losses. I love your word and the story around how you chose it. I wanted to choose a word this year but couldn't decide on one and then we have just had so much drama recently it kind of got lost. Maybe I will still choose one eventually though :)