International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day has made me think about the women in my life both past and present. I think we take female friendship for granted when we are young.  We know our social group will change.  People move away, get married, divorced, have babies, but the ones that are special will stay somewhere in our lives.

Then we get older and a friend gets ill or dies suddenly. It is a shock. You were going to ring her. You meant to. Now you can’t. It is like a red alert suddenly. The need to cherish and not neglect your friends or take them for granted. It is not  necessarily to do with age, either. Death does not discriminate. In the last two years I have lost three of the friends closest to me. There is this huge empty space that they inhabited that I will never be able to fill. Twenty or more years of friendship cannot be replaced; a precious shorthand that cannot be replicated. Friends who know you inside out, have been with you through huge events in your life. Friends whose hands you have held in their last precious moments. Whose funerals have been soaring monuments to their capacity for love and life.

Loss is an alarm, to try to never put off being there for the people you love, to make all small joys into a celebration. They will not always be around, nor might you… So let’s laugh, love, cry and be happy with our friends, but also for them.

In A Kingdom by the Sea is on an Amazon promotion for 99p for the whole of March…

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