We went to a wedding in Cornwall last weekend, which was lovely. Everything looked beautiful and although strictly speaking it was my husband’s side of the family, this first-cousin-once-removed-in-law felt very welcome.
I was reminded, naturally, of our own wedding, and also others. My thoughts strayed to all the people I’ve met and grown to care for in my life. There are so many, which is probably why I feel I haven’t paid enough attention to most of them. Growing up – family members, school friends and then sixth form college friends, friends from my home church and then other Christian circles, others I met through mutual acquaintances, new family members, then moving away to study – more friends, very close owing to living in such tight community, then moving away to a new place and new church with a new husband – and his family became part of the circle…then moving again…then people I’ve met through work – which, owing to the nature of what I do is not static – there are always more people, more places, more acquaintances who, unexpectedly, become kindreds.
There are so many people I know and have known. So many people I love. There are those in this world who have no idea of the rush of affection I get just by thinking of them. Some would be delighted, others embarrassed.
I think again of our wedding and of those I assumed would be there but didn’t make it, as well as those who made an unexpectedly huge effort to be there. I think of those I knew at that time – but our friendship had not yet matured into what it is now – I wonder now how on earth it was I didn’t invite them. I think of those I met since, and how important they’ve become to me. I think of those who’ve drifted out of touch, and wonder about them. Some of them I still care for deeply, and their absence causes me pain.
I want to apologise to those who I’ve slipped away from; I didn’t want to, or mean to – life hurtled in and time went more quickly than I thought, my confidence has failed me on more than one occasion, circumstances have filled my mind and made me neglectful.
There are so many. And to all I wish to say: I’m so glad I’ve known you.