This is Frankie.
(And me. In New York. AAAGGGHHH!!! I still can’t believe that happened!)
I first met Frankie six years ago, when she moved into the house next door.
The first I knew of their arrival was courtesy of their little girl Lilly, then two, came hurtling at full pace into our front yard, proceeded to jump, skip and cavort with my little Ella, then one, and then floated off as quickly as she’d arrived, calling out into the breeze: “Ella! Ella! You’re my BEST FRIEND!”
Soon after, Frankie and her very pregnant belly introduced herself to me and my very pregnant belly. We were due within two months of each other (as it would turn out, two months to the exact day) and what followed were shared meals, parties, child-wrangling, commiserating, laughing, board games, chocolate ingesting marathons, DVD nights and everything in between.
Soon, I would find myself floating off next door calling out into the breeze: “Frankie! Frankie! You’re my BEST FRIEND!”
She would then call the police.
I’ve learned so much from this truly wondrous part of my life:
– that the real, lasting, true friendships of your life aren’t ‘needy’. The connection you have will always be there, and you both know it and are secure in that, regardless of how much time has passed between drinks.
– that a true friend is one you can completely fall apart in front of, can reveal your darkest and ugliest innards, and also just laugh about something so ridiculous that it seems that nobody else on the planet Earth could even glimpse any semblance of humour in it. You can be completely fabulous and totally awful. You can let it all hang out for better and for worse. And know all the while that the other person will like you, lift you and love you.
– that at the end of my life, no matter what I’ve achieved or failed to achieve in terms of creative and career ambitions, to still have magical friendships in tact, will be amongst the greatest treasures. For I can’t imagine any Oscars holding me through my retirement and laughing with me when my catheter keeps falling out.