I finished work yesterday.
For the last time I swept the floor, walked in to the corner of the counter and bashed myself on the doorframe – some things will never change. For the last time I stepped out of the shop with Lorna, and I still don’t know how I feel about that.
Lorna is my absolute angel. She’s been a friend to me when I’ve had none and for a long time she’s been the only thing keeping me in Ashby, keeping me going. She makes work fun and more often than not she’s the reason I’ve loved my job.
She’s my best friend.
And she’s spent all week trying to make me cry.
It’s a running joke that I’m dead inside – although it’s less of a joke and more of a statement of fact.
I don’t mean that I’m entirely heartless and incapable of love, I’m mean that I’m too emotional and so just shut everything down so I don’t feel it, I’m British. I didn’t even cry when I dislocated my shoulder. Again. I just sat there laughing at how ridiculous the situation was and how much Mum and Dad and Lorna were going to kill me.
Lorna, on the other hand isn’t afraid of her emotions; I don’t just mean that she isn’t scared to cry, but she’s not scared to feel. She’s already missing me, already sad that I’m going.
So with the biggest change of my life about to happen, she was expecting it to trigger something and that she’d get some tears.
It’s not gone entirely to plan.
For the past week she’s been absolutely spoiling me. We had goodbye bingo with balloons and bubbly and a toy kangaroo and table confetti and me winning (for the first time), plus a shout out for me. Boom.
Then she got us friendship bracelets: hers is an acorn, and mine is a leaf; one for strength, one for a free spirit.
But she saved the best until last. I came in to work to bon voyage bunting, balloons, world map notebooks and Mean Girls pencils, plus sweeties and an almost sort of shout out from Emma Bunton.
I feel awful for being so excited to leave when she’s trying so hard to make me stay.
And it’s not that I don’t want Lorna to be there, I just can’t be here any more.
She said last night that since I moved back to Ashby I’ve not really made a life for myself, and she’s right, it’s always just been a stop gap. I didn’t necessarily think my next adventure would be quite so far…
And because I can’t say it, I’m writing it. I will miss you, Lorna.
I’ll miss seeing you every day and how excited you get about everything. I’ll miss your 3pm sugar crashes after a morning of filling our faces with sweeties. I’ll miss not having to make any effort with you and coming into the back to find you flat on the floor so I can crack your back. I’ll miss cracking your back. I’ll miss just having someone there, all the time, to play with (even if stupid Andy sometimes takes your attention away from me) and I’ll miss your big swirly handwriting.
I’ll miss having a friend.
And I know I’ll make new ones, but you’re the first adult friend I’ve ever made. The first friend I’ve made, because we wanted to be friends, and not just because we were all thrown into a situation together and happened to realise we had loads in common and you like me even though I’m a frickin’ weirdo with recycling OCDs.
You da best, babyguurl.