I’ve really enjoyed the school holidays with the kids. I just feel I’ve been able to focus on them completely rather than languishing in the pain of my separation. They really have kept me going in all of this. I’ll admit though that towards the end of this week my strength had depleted. No longer able to maintain the tidiness and order of the house, and I was worried about my finances. But I knew as I headed to mine of Friday night I’d miss them sorely.
My friend contacted me, she’d been having a rough time with her boyfriend and asked if she could stay at mine on Friday and Saturday night. I’ve not been social at all so it was a huge deal to have someone in my bubble as it were. This friend ‘T’ is younger than me, no experience of marriage, kids, separation and so her level of understanding isn’t quite there. But I decided to throw caution to the wind and open up my home and also make plans for Saturday night.
Friday she drank wine with great gusto but I didn’t even feel tempted to drink. I was tired from the weeks events and didn’t feel the need to drink for the sake of it. She talked about her boyfriend and her childhood with a rawness I’d not heard from her before. An anger, a grief that was painfully sad for her. On the Saturday she worked and I headed up to the house to hang out with the kids while S took our oldest shopping for an upcoming camp. The kids were great and I felt relaxed and content in their company. So much so, I dreaded the intended night out.
I felt obligated to follow through, T was hitting the wine again and I decided to drive as I didn’t intend on drinking. My head was beginning to thump painfully and wondered how the hell I would ever endure the evening. I was shocked when T produced a bottle of wine in the car to neck. I made the assumption at that point that this clearly wasn’t a girl just wanting some fun and a good night out. This was a girl in a lot of pain, needing the alcohol and distraction.
Another friend, even younger joined us at the bar. It was very busy, everyone seemed to be drinking a lot. Which as most sober people will know, it’s pretty tedious to be around. Fortunately a band played and I enjoyed the music. The girls were up and dancing, that alone would have been great. But T was pulling men up, flirting, dancing in a most seductive way. The guys were all over her and the young, excitable friend. I was the one with the coats and the bags!! Looking on, staying alert and suffering with a worsening headache. I could see things were likely to get out of hand, but I came across as the nagging bore. At the end of the night guys were asking the girls, where next? And making their intentions clear, but the girls fobbed them off without a second thought. Only my sober eyes were able to read mixed expressions of frustration and annoyance. For an awful moment they talked about going to a club but I shut that down. Even without a headache I couldn’t think of anything worse. By midnight I was well and truly a pumpkin!
Of course we walked the younger girl home. Even more wary that any dregs from the bar would follow. T was still shouting at and chatting to random guys. I became more frustrated and determined to end the night without incident. My hyper vigilance was at an all time high. I felt paranoid, aware, jumpy and positively over dosing on adrenaline.
Back in the car I couldn’t help but justify and sort of chastise T for shouting out at random men along the street. She got predictably defensive. The remainder of the journey was in silence.
Last night I lay in bed with a god awful migraine wondering how I could gently enquire about the drinking and her behaviour. I felt that she was in a bad place and could be on the way to self destructing. The girl is on under a lot of pressure, work, study, family, boyfriend. It all seems to be mounting up. But every attempt in my mind sounding like interfering or being too out of touch. It’s incredible how much the age difference impacts a friendship. In the end I did the only thing I could think of, I messaged her boyfriend in confidence and asked that he make contact with her and try to come to some sort of conclusion. As with everything in the air, it was having a negative impact on T. I took a gamble – this could really blow up in my face, but he’s reassured me that he won’t mention my message and last I heard they were meeting this evening.
Frankly my first social evening in months was not really a good introduction. My head is still pounding, I worry for my friend and have been reminded that I’m really too old, too tired and too boring for these sorts of nights out.
My daughter leaves for camp tomorrow for FIVE days. The location is EIGHT hours drive away. I’m anxious beyond belief. Luckily she’s a smart girl, I trust her implicitly, but I don’t trust anyone else! I will miss her terribly.
My son will now attend kindy 2 days per week which I’m really happy about so I can spend more time with him.
I’m at my house feeling quite unwell with this headache and it’s lonely without my family. I don’t know if I’ll ever get used to it.