People have friends for all different joys. Some people are just perfect for long Starbucks coffee mornings and shoe shopping. Some are the ones you want to lie on your bed and chat with, pretending you are 10. Then there are the friends that let you clean out their closets and the others that you shop, eat or see Alvin Ailey with. Some are just perfect for chatting about the kids or moaning about your thighs. Sometimes, you find a friend that wraps it all up into one. When that happens it is magic. Best friends don’t try and change you or make you go to the gym. The best thing is when someone just understands what you need and loves you warts ( or wobbly bits) and all.
Being in a rut is awful. Nothing is getting you moving. You know you should shake and move, and you hate the guilt of the sofa but climbing off it is just too hard. Occasionally there are bursts of activity and inspiration. Moments when “Aha!” is more than just the sound made after finding that lost shoe. Ever so rarely a glimpse of what could be comes through. But then the cave closes again and you’re back in the rut.
My rut lasted awhile. Once or twice I caught myself looking out of the window and sighing. In my manic moments I baked a lot but quite frankly I was bored and couldn’t snap out of it. Then one day ( and I am not kidding, it happened on a Wednesday) I decided I wanted to be a teacher. My biggest regret had been my teaching degree. A miserable experience that put me off teaching and wasted 3 years of my precious 20s. Suddenly I needed it, wanted it and was off running around trying to re-activate my expired teaching license. Once I started work the sun came out. I had found out what I wanted to do and I was out of the cave.
My friend Cass is in a rut. I keep telling her to be gentle with herself. It’s good that she feels guilty because that means eventually she’ll move but in the meantime she can stay in her rut. One day she’ll wake up and know what she wants. It happens at a different time for different people. In the meantime I’ll visit her in the cave whenever she wants. And I’ll bring chocolate.