“True friends stay with you no matter the distance or time that separates you”
It was one of my oldest friend’s, Abbie’s, Hen party (Bachelorette party for you Americans) recently. We’ve known each other since we were about 9 years old back when we started our swimming careers. Sport has a funny way of forging bonds between you and your fellow teammates. The ones you see everyday. The ones who have gone through the toughest of training sessions with you. The ones you stayed up way too late with at away competitions and on training camps. No-one on the outside can truly understand the bonds you form in the pool, on the track, in the gym or whichever sporting arena you perform in. I can only imagine it is similar to the bonds formed in the forces (though I have no first hand experience of this and I am only going off other people’s words).
We’ve had countless little adventures through the years, from staying up all night to watching her now fiance compete in the Beijing Olympics, to helping each other get through training camp and bringing in the new year in various fancy dress outfits! There was a time where her, I and Jess (our other member of our trio) were inseparable, so much so her mum used to have a bottle of brown sauce in the cupboard just for when I came round.
We’re not nearly as close as we were back then but then those days of being in the pool up to 20 hours per week are far behind us both and life has taken us in different directions. Yet still we always find a way to return to each other. The 3 of us against the world (well that’s how it felt sometimes anyway!) but even now, no matter how long since the last time we saw each other it’s as if no time had passed at all. We slip into our old roles, our old selves like your favourite, cosy pajamas.
That is exactly what happened on Sat night. I hadn’t seen Abbie since Jan (which in recent times is actually not that long) but that didn’t matter. A brief natter about our most important updates and we were back to our giggly 13 year old selves Having sleepovers and having our first taste of alcohol in the form of blue WKDs (of which I only had a mouthful before palming it off to someone else). Only this time it was for a wholly more adult occasion. To celebrate the upcoming nuptials of my oldest friend. The 1st of us to tie the knot.
While I cannot make the actual wedding (as it’s in the very beautiful Lake Garda, Italy and I do not have the money at the moment) I am super excited for her. Rocky (her fiance’s surname is rock) may have stole her away from us on paper but we will always be those giggling 13 year olds whenever we are together no matter the distance or time spent apart. For they are both the truest of friends.
photo credits – Jessica Twigg and Philly Lockitt
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