Friends: They Leave Imprints on your Heart

I rant when I’m particularly irritated or feel that there is injustice happening to those I care about – many of you who have been following my blog for a long time will know this. I feel the urge to rant, because I am tired of the same shit repeatedly, but realize that it isn’t going to solve anything; it is only going to steal my joy.

On the subject of joy, I’m going to share its opposite with you for a paragraph or two and then end off on a happy note, because while it’s normal to experience negative emotions, it’s not okay to allow them to take root in our minds – after all, our thoughts become our actions, not so?

Yesterday was an extremely busy day at the office, so when I got the news that a good friend of mine, Frances, had left this world for the next, I felt a pang of shock (although she’d been ill for a long while), but I couldn’t really think about it.  We hadn’t seen each other in a very long time, but for the last nine months or so, we’d reconnected online.  I often chatted to her about alternative things, and she always gave me her honest take –  No holds barred.  Even when she was at her worst, she always gave her best.  She listened without judgement and never hesitated to tell me the truth, even when it was hard to hear.  Now she’s gone, and part of me feels lost.  It’s odd really, because we were close for a short time, then so far removed from one another for over two decades and then close again.  A kind of ‘concertina friendship’ if you will.  She leaves behind an ex-husband, who despite the divorce, I know she loved ‘til her dying breath, and two children, who I’ve not met.  I’m devastatingly sad at her departure.  I’ve lost close people – even family – before, but with her it’s different.  I can’t articulate it, because I don’t know what it is.  The world is emptier without her.  One thing that is a relief, despite the heartache, is that she is finally pain free.

I said to Charlie yesterday that I think I have only a single photo of Frances and I together, and that if I do, it is in a dusty album in storage somewhere. I hope one day I’ll find it and be able to have a proper reminisce over it. Until then though, I’ll remember her for the amazing person she was: mother, fighter, friend.

3bc5a62f20c28a70b54a737cd501f0b7--love-my-friends-close-friends

Onto a less sad subject, Saskia, who “adopted” me as her big, but thin sister (we met in the gym…) is tying the knot in November and asked Yours Truly a while ago if I would be a bridesmaid. I was like, “is a duck’s arse damp?” followed by unexpected tears, of both joy, and surprise – because she has so many friends, and well, in comparison to them, I’m old.  She and her beau too live far away, but they are here for a few days, and she, her best friend of the past eighteen years (and Maid of Honour), another bridesmaid and I are getting together for dinner this evening to talk about the shindig.  I’m counting the hours because I just know we’re going to have a great time.

As I type this post, thinking about these two incredibly special ladies, I am reminded that making memories is important.  The digital era in which we live affords us the ability to capture those memories at the click of a smartphone button.  Sure, it’s amazing, but we need to caution against being lost in that action, as opposed to being lost in the people we’re with – so tonight, while I know the young ‘uns will be doing their millennial selfie thing, I’m not going to even take my phone with me. This evening, I’m going to imprint memories of this jubilant occasion in my mind’s eye.

Here’s to a night of uproarious fun, hysterical laughter, and most of all, the love of friends!

 

Advertisements

Candles in the Wind…

This past fortnight has been quite emotional for me.  It can be written off to the Mirena I had put in when the doctor did the other two procedures in November last year.  It’s normal.  Apparently.  I must just ride the wave.  Does that mean surf’s up?

Last week was a particularly bad week for me.  I would go from zero to bitch to activist to snivelling heap, to centre of attention to strong silent type in a matter of minutes.  Add to that I sometimes have foreboding premonitions and well, you pretty much have a category five hurricane on your hands.

I don’t often have these gut feelings, but when I do, they’re generally not wrong.  My friend Cassey was on my mind a great deal last week, and instead of just touching base, I kept putting it off.  Turned out she, along with another friend of mine, both lost parents last week, and one of my FB friends lost her brother, but the heartbreak doesn’t stop there 😦  On Saturday Shayla-Rae let me know that a couple of our former teachers lost their eldest son in a tragic drowning accident.  He was only seventeen.  A young man, with his entire future ahead of him.  It puts things in perspective for me once again.  Life is precious and in the blink of an eye, it can be ended, whether after a long illness, or in a heart-rending accident.  It also leaves one asking Why? Why did God decide to snuff their candles out?  Only He knows…

grief-loss

In the bigger scheme of things – you all know how scared I am to lose my parents, but having heard of all this loss this past week, I’m grateful The Toppie only broke his arm.  It could have been a lot worse.  A few people have sent well-wishes after my post about The Toppie.  As I said, going back to work did him the world of good.  I also think it saved The Bean from committing murder 😀  The next bridge to cross is when the plaster comes off.  I’ll give y’all another update shortly after.

On a happier note, I’m having a catch-up with Carmen after work tonight.  She’s visiting her parents for a few days.  Can’t wait to have a decent chinwag with her.  Even though I saw her three weeks ago, it feels like years has passed.

Have a great week everyone, and remember – tell the important people in your life that they mean something to you.  You never know when they won’t be around anymore!

A Man-Made god, used by God…in my opinion anyway…

Note to reader – You are welcome to comment on this post, but I WILL NOT get into a flame-war with you, should you disagree with my post.  I am entitled to my opinion.  This is MY space.  If you visit, respect that.  If you disagree with my views, and wish to comment, be adult about it.  I WILL NOT tolerate being sworn at, nor abused.  Such comments WILL BE REPORTED and subsequently DELETED. If you can’t handle that, then please leave.

Many people, have, in my opinion, made a god of Nelson Mandela, forgetting that he too, like you and I, was a person, created in the image of God.  There is a global outpouring of grief today, as his passing is mourned by millions.  I can’t help but wonder if Jesus had been on earth now, if His crucifixion would have got the same media coverage.  Now, before any of you decide to put me in front of a firing squad, stone me, burn me at the stake, or hang me by the neck until I’m dead, I’m not saying that Nelson Mandela wasn’t a great man, a great leader and a shining example to us all, not only as South Africans, but the world as a whole. 

A while ago my parents and I were listening to the news, where the report was about a six-week old little girl being raped.  A few weeks prior to that, two little girls had been gang-raped, their broken little bodies left in a make-shift toilet to be found.  In South Africa we daily hear news about rape, murder, looting, corruption and AIDS to name but a few.  So much so, that it actually isn’t news to us anymore, and THAT readers, is where the problem lies.  I believe that the only hope for us as a country, and the world as a whole is a Divine Intervention and while I don’t know what Nelson Mandela’s beliefs were, I believe in my heart that God made him a wise, humble and forgiving man and that the wisdom, humility and forgiveness God placed in him will be remembered for generations to come, and that many people who are touched by those traits, will feel a transformation in their hearts, and turn to the One True God.

Today my Facebook status reads:  “I think regardless of anyone’s political views, we cannot deny that Nelson Mandela was a great man, with a great vision for our country. He could very easily have incited a black on white war if had wanted to, but instead, he chose to FORGIVE and move on…

I’m in no way saying that our country is perfect – I often think that the vision Madiba had for our country has got lost as politicians fight for power, officials lie to the people, and ignorant people rape and murder women and children…and it saddens me and I could go on, BUT we need to remember that Madiba had a positive vision for us, that he loved this country, that he FORGAVE. He too saw the vision being lost – after all he was still alive during a great deal of it, but he continued to believe in this country. He remained strong in his vision and mission for all South Africans – for us to reconcile and move forward. Who knows, maybe now that he has finally gone, the vision will be re-instilled in the Rainbow Nation’s heart.” 

My only hope is that we get to a point where we all realize Who placed the greatness and vision:

We must therefore act together as a united people, for national reconciliation, for nation building, for the birth of a new world.
Let there be justice for all.
Let there be peace for all.

Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another and suffer the indignity of being the skunk of the world.
Let freedom reign!
The sun shall never set on so glorious a human achievement!
God bless Africa!
’ (Excerpt from Nelson Mandela’s Inaugural Celebration Address)

upon Nelson Mandela and that we get to know Him, because “we know that in ALL things God works for the good of those who love Him, and who are called according to His Purpose”.  Romans 8:28