This is my response to the Flashback Track Friday prompt, where we were given Bubbling by Aswad and asked:
What makes you bubble?
I first met Chris at college,
A lifelong friend prognosis,
We drifted in our twenties,
Despite your diagnosis.
My first-time, full on girlfriend,
A fling sparked from the blue,
You never lost that special place,
My once-beloved Sue.
We met the next semester,
My search appeared done,
My first long-term relationship,
I thought you were the one.
A French girl on a year’s exchange,
Her stay paid dividends,
The time when we were housemates,
Became the best of friends.
A woman with a child,
Regarded you with awe.
I was scared by the committment,
But I think you wanted more.
Our meeting unexpected,
But hooked up now for life
I thought it was plain sailing,
When you became my wife.
You started as a client,
You morphed into best bud,
With confluent ideas,
You are a cut above.
Where to start with this? After the stroke, I was immobile, I was only just walking again. even going to the bathroom was fraught with risk. About the only thing that worked back then, my mind, was fertile ground, though, and one of the questions I pondered was the important things in life.
Some of you might know, I was once a high-earner. I had nice things, stayed in five-star hotels, drove a Porsche 911… But none of that matters. The important things are the people I have loved. So, this is a really easy question. Those interactions have made life worth living. That’s the main reason I do voluntary work now – to just spread some positive vibes to other people.
I only really place about 7-8 people in that category, and have listed many of them above/below. I guess that’s pretty low, I’m not sure, but I’m generally more comfortable living in my own space, so never really felt obliged to mix.
Lastly, this is nothing to do with sex – I have had several sexual partners who are not on this list, and at the same time, half of the people on it, I never had sex with. There is a world of difference between love and sex.
The important people include:
- an old college friend. Back in the day he was my best buddy, but we grew apart as adults and now, sadly, have lost touch. Just before we did, he disclosed to me that he had Parkinson’s. Having not long had my own stroke, I couldn’t help but observe that we were both still shy of fifty.
- Sue was my first full-on girlfriend. First should be, and was, special. Fond memories.
- For about a year before, and a year after, leaving college, there was Jane. We even became engaged briefly – Jane was my lucky escape.
- Agnes, on placement from university in France. We were never an item, but rather bessie mates. I always knew a relationship would be awkward, I’m pretty sure that she didn’t want one either, and the resulting friendship spawned visits, which kindled my own love of France. In later years our children played together, and we are still in touch thirty years later.
- I liked to go cold-turkey with relationships-gone-sour – but Laura is the exception. We were very different backgrounds – I was fresh out of college and she was a single mum. At that age, I was terrified. I’m not sure if she ever knew just how terrified I was – not only having to keep her own life in order, but this whole other person’s, too. When she suggested we just be friends, I was quick to agree. Again, she has been a friend about thirty years, and we spoke last Monday.
- Mrs Bump. She was the plainest sailing of everyone – that’s how I knew.
- One of my clients – we just clicked, saw eye-to-eye on so many aspects of work, became lunch buddies and we remain friends years later. I miss seeing him every day but I’m invited to his 60th up in London in a few weeks.
If you haven’t already guessed, the interactions I have had with my friends is what makes me bubble.