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  • A silence I cannot explain descended on my bedroom and at that very moment, I lowered the book that I was reading and looked up. The silence bellowed and I just knew that the time had come.

    The screaming started and I calmly walked to the bannister and looked down at my eldest who barely made the first stair when the grief impeded any further movement. He screamed over and over, “She’s dead! She’s dead! Abuela’s dead! Mum, she’s dead!” My mother had passed away.

    I left him. I just looked down with no expression, no movement. I knew already I could not comfort him; his eyes begged and I was cold toward him. My husband came to his aid and gently stroked his shoulder. He took the task away from me.

    This happened on 23rd December 2009.

    When my best friend announced that she was getting married on this very day, five years later, I was nothing but happy. My people believe that true happiness can only be achieved when we apply balance to everything that we are and what we do. When cooking, you must balance salt with sugar. A wedding would give balance to a death. Two people are reborn as one.

    I did not comment about the significance of the day she chose, because it was now about her. I did not commemorate the day openly, because I did not wish to take away the spotlight from her day. My mother would have been happy.

    Something happened more than ten years ago that confirmed Becky would be part of my life for a lifetime to come.
  • She does not particularly like children…

    At least not back then. Lucky me….I had three.

    My youngest was 5 months old when we met and I don’t remember her EVER holding him. If she did, it would have been with arms outstretched, parallel, as far from her as humanly possible. But one day, my car packed it in. Without hesitation, Becky left her home earlier than she needed to, to pick up baby and me, drive to the nursery, drop him off, sign him in, drive us to work, drive me back there at lunch time to check on him, drive back to work, drive back to the nursery, get him back in the car, take us home and start all over again. The first day was jokes because she had a little red, two door Fiat Punto and getting a baby seat in it was; well we did stop to laugh for about twenty minutes.

    We’ve been to small gigs. We’ve been to see our favourite bands perform. We’ve been to Italy and screamed when a random man showed up at the car window with a big ass fish. She’s held my hair back whilst I threw up in the sink at Casino’s. She’s played along when I convinced some guys I was from Mexico or something and landed us free drinks. She was there when we bumped into Rik Mayall. She fell in the middle of the road at Kings Cross and wanted to stay there. Not a good idea, Becky. I was there when she almost bought a house with the wrong person. She was there when I bought a pair of imitation Adidas jogging bottoms and we pissed ourselves laughing at how the lines kept twisting from the side to the front.

    Ten years have passed and I now sit at the back of the chapel watching her start her new life. I have not lost my friend. I hope I have gained her new husband, Ben.

    Ben wrote their wedding song which you now hear in the background of this love story and friendship. What a beautiful, intimate gift for a loved one. Song writing takes time and you never truly give of yourself until you give of your time because time you can never recover. I know they will look after each other.

    23rd December will be a date never forgotten and I no longer grieve for my mother.

    Balance is restored.

    Song Title: Christmas Tree Lights
    Drums by Redd Reddington
    © Lyrics, vocals and all other instruments by Ben Martin
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