I visited the life I’d left

Once I’d written my previous post ‘Writing your own book’ about being proud of my life, and realising I knew I was missing my friends after three years of moving to a new place to live. I decided it was time to visit the Island I had left.

I kept it simple in terms of messaging five girlfriends that I was coming for the weekend. A girlfriend initiated a plan. She invited me to hers and said we could hike, have some one on one and catch up. I realised I felt the need to ensure it was what I was comfortable with excluding deep conversations about my life. I stood in a hot shower and thought “What do I want for this trip?”

I booked a waterfront restaurant, invited my girlfriends. A couple of days earlier I ordered supermarket delivery for Saturday, to a girlfriends house for the evening meal and invited my girlfriends husbands for that night too. They too are my dear friends of 20 years of amazing memories.

The day was sunny and hot. The restaurant was across the road from the beach. I looked at the faces of my girlfriends and we laughed. I was myself, I was happy and I knew that that moment would be in my mind for always. During lunch one my gorgeous girlfriends (my son’s godmother) made a toast to me about how proud she was for never being bitter and being brave through what she knew only some of my harrowing journey, how incredibly well I had maintained dignity through such adversity. It was received so thankfully.  With a ‘cheers’ our eyes meeting as we toasted, we all sipped our French Rose’ in the sun.

That evening, I was cooking in the kitchen and my friends were all chatting and laughing with each other. The attention wasn’t on me, I felt such a peace in myself. I was there and I was a part of this. As I served a feast to the table of eight dear friends. We sat down to hand around platters of food and share the nights conversations. It was then that I was reminded, these friendships would last a lifetime.

My weekend on the Island was about my friendships. I felt no sadness for a life I had left. I was proud to speak about what my two children were up to. About my life now. I realised what I had purposely strived for was true. My previous chapter had not defined me. I was wise, content and happy. I was not bitter and hung up on the complexities of the psychological abuse and my separation. My company was light, happy and focused on today and  I was happy to head home.

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