When my mother died at 91, her three closest friends were still living. Elsa, Gig & Ellen were as dear to me as my cousin, Peggy, another one of Mom’s bests.
After Mom was gone, so were their letters & phone calls, their connection to her life – – and, since my earliest memories, with my own. One of my great regrets is not making the effort to keep those treasured relationships present in my life, more than sending a Christmas card.
Oh, I wrote to each to say how much she meant to Mom, to me & to our family. Looking back, I see how easily I could have reached out in deeper, richer, more durable ways, sharing memories & asking for theirs.
I forgot that she was one of their besties, too.
Was reminded of those four unforgettable friends as I read the. NextAvenue.org article on losing a best friend. As an unthinking younger, I didn’t fathom how, when a best passes, the fabric of life is ripped apart, leaving a tear that can’t be repaired.
Mom & I often talked about Aunt Betty, her nearest & dearest across all time – speaking of her younger sister, asking for stories, helped keep her present in Mom’s life decades after “Bets” slipped from us. Until this moment, it never dawned on me that a precious opportunity to stay connected AND experience Mom from fresh perspectives slipped through my fingers.
We can never really prepare ourselves for the loss of our best friend, but we can be conscious that there will be an unfillable hole in our heart & life. And we can be conscious of how we can be there for others if a loved one of ours who is a best of theirs dies.
Reading the article got me thinking about my sister, Mim, who died in July 2015 & how I can reach out to her bests – to Beth & Gray & Penny & Lark, to Mark & Peter, to Mike & Kerry, to ournieces & nephews for their cherished memories & heart impression of her spirit & life.
The article is a great read for any age & a much-appreciated reminder to be aware, to stay connected. To know we can’t mend the tear, but perhaps we can help bind up the frayed edges.
Related Link: https://www.nextavenue.org/when-your-best-friend-dies/