But that's not what sucks about getting older. Last night I had a party, my nearest, dearest and oldest friends all showed up but it didn't quite turn out as I thought it would. You see, my brother from another mother came, *David. Normally David and I would run around, catch up on the latest gist in each other's lives, split a bottle, tease each other, share naughty secrets and other general silliness. But this was not to be. Apparently David is now a married man, maybe because I've not seen him since the wedding it hadn't dawned on me how much our relationship had changed. But naturally all that "silliness" had to be dispensed with. We smiled politely at each other like two strangers meeting for the first time and when time came to serve them food, I did so as I would my aunt and uncle. Never mind that we're in the same age group.
*Steve, my paddy, brother, confidante, blood, who I don't see often enough because our careers and life generally can't afford us that luxury, was there too. I kept telling anyone who cared to listen that Steve was the person I was most excited to see. I had soooooo much I wanted to talk to him about and generally just sit with him and soak up his calmth and general happiness while he listened to me and nod knowingly and patiently as usual. Once again it wasn't to be. The minute Steve got here he announced that he was expecting someone and asked if it was ok. Of course it was ok. At least I'll have some moments with him before she got here. Unfortunately, before I could say "Cake", she arrived and Steve became oblivious to me. I politely got up, gave way and moved on.
*Sarah normally would have come and stood where the food was and help out with everything while we "gossiped" about everyone and what they wore and how horrid some people's makeup was. Normally we would have good laughs and she would help with everything and stay after everyone left to help clean up. But last night Sarah sat in one little corner, she was there but she almost wasn't there. The boisterous, vivacious Sarah was as quiet as a mouse and it was easy to forget that she was even there. Sarah's pregnancy has made her perpetually sleepy and uninterested. In bed was obviously where she wanted to be and she couldn't wait to get back there. I let her be.
*Chinwe came through. Chinwe Miss Independent Career Woman. Chinwe my friend. Surprisingly I couldn't connect with her as all she cares to talk about anymore is her job, her career, her plans to one day take over the world, and how she intends to do it. All very great really. But I would have loved to talk with my friend about so many other things. Well, she didn't seem to want to. When she wasn't talking about taking over the world, she was typing away furiously on her tablet; reading mails, sending mails and replying to mails. She had the general air of someone who would rather be somewhere else.
* Amaka ... Hmmmm. How did that happen? All Amaka talked about was her marriage, her kids, other people's marriages, happy marriages, sad marriages, misbehaving husbands, cooking for her husband, who's pregnant, who had a baby boy, who's getting married, who still thinks she has time and wouldn't "go and look for husband"...... On and on and on. My mind kept going back to my Amaka of years back as my mind simultaneously wondered who this "woman" talking to me is.
Last night was beautiful. I was so happy that everyone that mattered came through. I'm truly grateful to those that were there to share that day with me, regardless of any other thing. But then my eyes were open to realities. I went to bed with so many questions. What happened to everyone? When did we all change? What do we still have in common? When did we all become so grown up?
I really wanted us to have good laughs, I wanted us to let our hair down, tell silly jokes and play silly games. I wanted us to party like it was our last party ever. I wanted us to have a blast and create new memories. Unfortunately life has happened to all of us. We have become so grown, so serious.... so adult. We've lost the ability to laugh loudly, dance carelessly, live freely and just be.
Or maybe it was in fact I who couldn't stop worrying, maybe it was I who kept thinking about my career and the path my life is taking while people who genuinely love and care for me came to be with me. Maybe it was I who was too uptight to let my hair down...... Maybe that was it.
I woke up this morning and my first thought was GETTING OLDER SUCKS!