Do you know what I needed today? I needed Elisse.
Let me tell you about Elisse. She is a bombshell.
Yes, she is gorgeous (very easy to look at) but when I say bombshell, I mean in personality. You can’t even have a coffee with this girl without shaking your head the whole way home saying ‘What. The. Eff. Was. that’
I met her when she was working at the home wares store with my sister. I go in one day and there is Elisse dressed in the cutest outfit that you have ever seen, her hair all pretty, wearing red lipstick and this little apron and I did that thing where you make an assumption on a person simply by what you see…. Whats that word called when people do that again?……… oh yeah. Judging.
I judged her.
I decided that she was probably a bit of a sweetheart, she probably says ‘oh blast’ instead of the Eff word, daddy was probably a successful real-estate agent who bought her a pony when she was little, and she still keeps stuffed bears on her bed.
Then she opened her mouth from behind the counter to discuss blow jobs in such a casual way that she could have just as easily been discussing the annoying way you can never quite get those price stickers off the bottom of new plates, and it was then that I realized that not only had I been completely off the mark with this girl, but that we would also be very, very good friends from that day on. And so we were.
And so it happens that she is due down on the Coast this weekend for Cooly Rocks On, an annual rockabilly event on the Gold Coast, which lasts the whole weekend.
Elisse is involved with the rockabilly culture, and is somewhat of a genius in making women over, transforming them from their old ragged and tired selves, into these 50’s bombshells.
So she comesdown on the Friday, and I head to pick her up from the train station. I had been on my bed all day trying to finish the world’s most stupid university assignment, and my appearance testified to this.
As I am rounding the corner into the station, I see Elisse and I lose my mind. Elisse will laugh at this remembering how I got out of the car and just flipped out. She looked completely, over the top, perfectly amazing. The very picture of a 50’s dream. “Oh my Gooooooooood, Elisse!! Look at you!! You’re perfect!! Oh don’t even look at me, I am scum standing next to you, oh my goodness how do you even look so great!! I can’t even deal with this right now, just look at you!!”
It went on and on, while we are packing her bags into the car, while I am driving away from the station, as we look for a park at the Mall, the whole way I am gushing and loosing my mind.
After settling in at home we got straight onto the ‘I haven’t seen you for several months’ catch up session and drank too many bottles of wine. According to my sister, hysterical laughter could be heard coming from my bedroom until 2:30 the next morning.
Friendships like the one I have with Elisse make my life incredibly rich.
I have been blessed above and beyond in my life to have developed some wonderful friendships, and each person is so valuable to me that I wouldn’t know what to do if I should lose even of of them.
But quality friendships don’t just happen. You have to develop them, invest in them, sow your time and energy into them, but its worth it. I would not be where I am today or the person I am today without these people. I have friends that actually know me better than I know myself, and yet despite this, despite the fact that they have seen the ugliest, darkest and most flawed parts of who I am, they are somehow still there.
There have been periods of my life where I have been such a mess, so helpless and pathetic and stupid and not learning from my mistakes. How frustrating it must have been for my friends to watch me slip on the same banana peel over and over again, and during these times I am not even being a decent friend in return, and could go a whole phone call without asking how their beautiful children were doing, or how studies were coming along or ‘are you still with that guy?’ or ‘did that girl ever call you back?’ Nothing.
Just completely needy, yet with no energy in me to give anything back. And yet, they are still there.
When my life is falling apart, they will take my phone call at any hour of the day or night and with wisdom and patience, help me talk through my grief and bring me back to a place where I can cope again. I know that because of this, I am very, very blessed.
These friendships will be crucial to me over the next 998 days. As I embark on this journey to address the flaws in my character and try to develop even a scrap of self esteem and create boundaries and discover new strengths, I will need these people right by my side.
There will be many more nights drinking too much wine with Elisse, hundreds more phone calls home to the friends who knew me when I was still learning to walk, and the friends who were there the day I got my belly button pierced and the ones who walked up the aisle before me on my wedding day, and the one who took the call the hour I walked out of the divorce court as a broken woman. Yes, there will be many more days where they come to my rescue and pull me up off the floor again before this story can wrap up, but dear friends, I value each and every one of you. Each one of you is the love of my life and so this story, as it continues to unfold, is dedicated to you.