Life is too short for regrets and I was reminded of this, this week when someone I used to call a very dear friend died unexpectedly from a heart attack on Wednesday aged 49. We were very close when our children was small, along with another couple, we celebrated birthdays, christmases, child care together. She was god mother to my youngest child. We were there for one another when things got tough, we laughed, we cried, we relied on one another. Then things happened in our lives and we grew apart. I remarried and moved away, the other friends also moved away within a year and something strange had happened with the woman who died, her contact with myself and the other friends stopped and the relationship dwindled into nothing. A few years ago she came back into the lives of the other couple, but by this time we were living abroad and I never got the chance to find out exactly what went wrong. My relationship with the other couple has become distant also, but we still keep in touch and there have been the occasional meet ups when I've been in the UK. I'm very grateful that they informed me of her death yesterday, very shocked also and I feel that a part of life has now closed for ever. Old people die, people who have led full lives, not people my age, not my friends.
I question my own mortality on occasions, I think about the older generation in the family, I assume that I will outlive my parents, my aunts and uncles. I remember when my nan passed away in 1994 and my mother saying, 'that's it, I'm the adult now' and I was puzzled by it. I now understand what she means, her generation is in charge now and it's made me realise it won't be many more years before I'm the oldest one left in the family.
For my friend that isn't going to happen, she had two grown up son's who all of a sudden have become the adults, the one's in charge, the one's left behind.
Although we weren't in contact these days, I grieve for a lost friendship that can never be put right now, I grieve for her adult children. I grieve for opportunities lost and for the future when I become the adult, the person in charge, assuming that life follows the pattern I grew up expecting. Receiving this news yesterday, just goes to show we never know what is going to happen in our lives and that we should make peace with ourselves and others before it's too late.