Some Soul Nourishment

Meeting Nathalix off the train
A little while ago I read an article suggesting that women who don’t spend enough time with great female friends, don’t live as long as those who do. Apparently men don’t “need” friendship nourishment, but women do. So it got me thinking, as the past few years have left me pretty isolated from the great friends in my life, and this has all happened at probably the worst time to be isolated – aka the early years of motherhood.

I’ve always felt very fortunate to have made amazing friends all around the world, everywhere I’ve lived (except maybe Phuket?) and two of the pivotal friendships I made in London were with Saskia and Nathalie. We have been in each other’s lives since 1996, and were always there for each other when things were good or bad, we were witnesses/bridesmaids/special people at each other’s weddings, have holidayed together in gorgeous places, and so much more. It is a friendship I’ve always treasured and I absolutely want it to stand the test of time, but that’s not always easy when everyone is spread across different countries, time zones and leading busy lives.

After seven years of not seeing each other face-to-face, I decided enough was enough – I was gunna surprise Saskia for her 40th b’day. And you know what, surprise her I did. I was very impressed with her husband Eylard for not letting the cat out of the bag, and it was really hilarious seeing her reaction – I don’t think she could quite believe her eyes for the first few hours.

Ellen's beautiful home
Nathalix arrived from Paris the next day and apart from the birthday obligations and party (which was a FABULOUS dinner party for 13 with Sas’s favourite women!) we talked and talked and talked. Eylard’s magnificent mother Ellen said you girls never stop talking. And Saskia said yes, but we also listen too. It’s an amazing talent us women have, how we can talk and listen at the same time, don’t you think?

So much has happened for all of us in the last seven years, and for me in particular, it was so nice to be listened to and given some perspective that helped me look at my life in a slightly different way. I needed that. I missed my boys while I was away, I felt terrible leaving Steve to handle our little loves all alone for seven days, but I have come home refreshed and looking at life with different eyes. I just got some perspective on my thinking that I could never get when I am living in the middle of life. And for that I am thankful to Sas and Nathalix, Eylard and Ellen, and Steve.

Eylard the chef, his mum bought the apron
I’m also really thankful for the love and warmth I got in Holland – I have family there you know. The Wurpels are amazing people who open their homes and hearts to you, and I know they will always be there to back and support me, no matter what. And I’ve got another family in Paris too! How lucky am I? You just don’t make those kinds of friendships everyday and that is the reason I went – I want to keep this friendship alive and still be talking (and listening) with these girls when we’re all old crones. Although Nathalix and Saskia will never be old crones!

Yours, without the bollocks
Andrix

PS: Andrix and Nathalix comes from a shared love of Asterix - she is French afterall. Saskia got Saskium, but she never dug Asterix as much as we did, so it never stuck.




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