Today I say goodbye to another one of my friends. I’ve always been opposed to the idea that you don’t go to work to make friends. I mean, if you’re anything like me (a little bit of a workaholic) you spend at least 37.5 hours a week at work. You have to at least try and like the people you work with. In that respect more than anything I’m lucky to be working where I’m working, because I’ve met people along the way that I can genuinely call my friends.
However, its the nature of jobs in central London to have such a high turnover rate, especially when it comes to the nursing profession. Its just too expensive to be living or commuting to London, so when opportunities come elsewhere most people jump at the chance. Add Brexit to that mix (and the unstable value of the pound versus the Euro), well, let’s just say I’ve said goodbye to far too many people in the past year. At least this last one is just leaving the hospital, not the country.
Work is going to be a much more lonelier place without her. She’s the type who won’t say much but who will speak up when it matters. She will listen to me and support me in my endeavours. On the other hand, she will let me know if there’s something I could be doing to improve things. They say you’re led to friends who will help you grow; in addition I think we are naturally attracted to people who are the opposite of us. I tend to be overexcited and sometimes overly optimistic, and most of my friends are calm, grounded people who will slow me down in a good way. Mostly, they’re people who will always be there even if its just to listen.
I hate goodbyes. I’m also not a big fan of change, however necessary it may be. Sometimes I wish I could live in an everlasting present where things would just stay the way they are. But. People have to move on to wherever life and opportunities take them, and we can only try to keep that connection despite the distance.
To all my friends who have left or are leaving, you take a little bit of me each time with you and I will really miss you guys. 😭
I see no shame in an almost-30 year old reading young adult books. Partly because in some ways I’m perpetually stuck in adolescence, but mostly because there are still things we can learn from them.
Finding Audrey is a lighthearted book that deals with some heavy issues. Its never quite clear what kind of trauma Audrey went through although its implied that she was bullied by some of the more popular girls and the school did nothing about it. She developed general and social anxiety as well as depression because of it. She hasn’t been out of the house for a year and she wears dark sunglasses everywhere because looking into people’s eyes without a barrier give her palpitations.
Most people underestimate eyes. For a start, they’re powerful. They have range. You focus on someone thirty metres away, through a whole bunch of people, and they know you’re looking at them. What other bit of human anatomy can do that?
Anyway, she’s in therapy and she’s taking baby steps to get better. She meets her brother’s friend Linus who somehow gets past her barriers by finding ways to talk to her that won’t make her anxious. They start off with writing notes and then she eventually gets the courage to buy a mobile phone so they can text.
I was skeptical about this at first because I though that Ms Kinsella will try to make us believe that love (teenage love at that) will somehow magically cure mental illness. Because that’s what it is: an illness. Chemicals in your body are actually causing you to have these thoughts so its useless for people to tell you to just snap out of it. People who are living with this illness are aware these thoughts are unreasonable but they can’t control it, not without help. So no, I don’t think there’s a love affair out there that is more powerful than clonazepam. Or prozac.
But Sophie Kinsella dealt with that in a nice way. The love story was almost an aside, an addition to the journey that Audrey took to find herself again. In fact, the bulk of this book was made up of Audrey’s family, who are hilarious. There’s a fun side story about how parents suddenly forget how to talk to their kids once they reach puberty and that’s something we can all relate to. How many times as teenagers did we think or say the words ‘you don’t understand!’ in relation to our parents? Almost every damn day. I think teenagers are the most selfish people in the world, and the most self-centred. Thank goodness we mostly grow out of it.
Anyway, this is a fun book to read. There were lots of laugh out loud moments. I gave it a three-star in Goodreads because it tended to be too abrupt on some of the developments and I feel like nothing was really resolved. And yes, as much as I know love its not the next big cure for depression I can’t help but wish we got a little more of the love story. But i really enjoyed going through this journey with Audrey.