I get a lot of emails from people who love the “made me, me” series. Whether it be books, or friends, these series shed light on what makes members of the AOW community who they are, on their stories and histories.
Thanks, Pensky. Over to you:
Wasps are naughtier than bees.
Catie was the girl at my new primary school who was better at me than everything. I couldn’t stand her. She threatened the strongest belief I held about myself at the age of 11- that I was The Best At Everything. Suddenly I wasn’t the only genius at English and Maths and Art and Drama and Music and Science anymore. And neither was she – and she hated it. We danced around each other like cross little princesses, convinced one was about to dethrone the other.
But then (with a rousing, cinematic score playing in the background) these enemies learned that by combining forces they could take on the world. And slowly we learned to like each other. Before we knew it, we were inseparable. But rather than simply using our powers for good, we decided to use them to be just a little bit naughty.
Aha! Nefarious thought strikes!
Oh how we liked to be naughty. Mostly the standard adolescent naughtiness of dressing up in sequins and heels and fake fur and pretending we were at least six years older than we actually were in order to blag in to clubs….locking ourselves in the bathroom and drinking Martini til we both threw up…but also stealing wheeled laundry pallets on a certain camping trip and racing them through the campsite…daring boys who liked us to run to the chippy naked but for a sarong and then giggling in hysterical impish glee as they race back at full pelt chased by a police car….and a lot of other things I’d rather not say in case one of our mothers (who have already spent most of our lives shaking their heads disapprovingly at the other one’s bad influence) might stumble across this. Suffice to say, whatever idea one came up with, the other would egg them on until we were both running down the road screaming, pursued by somebody in authority, wielding a baton.
What is a friend for if not somebody to hold your hand while you experience the world, push the boundaries and find out who you are?
It’s Cowboy Time! (ten t-t-ten t-t-ten ten ten….tenuous?)
And a friend
holds up a mirror to you. When those awful times come around in life that make you lose you grip on the world, a friend
gives you perpsective.
Catie has helped me out of the darkest dark horrible terrifying place I have ever been in, just by repeatedly reminding me who I am. Sometimes you forget your own self. You need other people to remind you why they love you. It is not a weakness. It is simply humanity. We are lucky to have each other. We are ALL lucky to have the people who love us. The people who pick us up, dust us down and send us on our way.
I am fortunate to have my wonderful, amazing husband, my family and my friends.
But I wouldn’t be the person I am today without Catie, and that’s because we have grown together.
Our lives have intertwined to create a joint consciousness built from countless memories, mistakes and triumphs – all shared.
Cups of tea on top of a Ferris wheel at sunrise, dancing round to Sister Act II in our parent’s living room, sobbing over endless stupid boys, getting drunk on the dodgems at the village fair, dying each others hair every colour of the rainbow, dancing til our feet hurt in endless warehouses and filthy basement clubs, getting banned from school concerts for playing in our sweary punk band, childishly throwing increasingly large objects at each other from across the room when we’re bored at parties (we still do this: it’s still not big, it’s still not clever).
At the start of our most ridiculous New Year’s party ever – we had pants on our heads by the end, I believe.
Part of me wonders – what would have happened if I had never met this outgoing, ridiculous firework of a best friend
? Would I still be the social tortoise who sticks her head into her shell the minute anybody speaks to her? The bespectacled girl who would rather stick her nose in a book than go out dancing? The awkward introvert who would never in a million years have gone out and met the awesome man I am now married to
I don’t know.
What I do know is that you cannot put a price on somebody looking you straight in the eye and saying “I choose you”. You are not her family, you are not her partner or spouse, in fact – she doesn’t really need you at all, technically. She has a hundred or more friends and a thousand acquaintances. But she chooses YOU as her best one. YOU as the one she can’t live without, hasn’t lived without for twenty years, because of the person you are, because of your brilliance, because of your crap bits too, because she cannot imagine her world without you.
Who needs to be the best at anything when you can have that?
As far as I am concerned, you have your sister. You have already won.
Laughing as we still can’t quite believe somebody is stupidly about to marry one of us.