I am very happy. I met my great-niece for the first time on Saturday. At ten months, she is standing up, and walking round furniture or when supported by two hands- sometimes by just one hand. She stood on my knee, and I told her how strong she was, and how wonderful that was. S tells me that “great-aunt” sounds much older than “grandmother”, but I am not convinced.
That is the first time I have seen the family since 2013. I suppose I am closer to them than at any time since then. I am unused to blogging like this, I am being especially politic: I restrict what I write to my reactions and feelings, but today not even all those; yet I can share the positive ones. I am happy. I may go back, even later this year, to scatter my father’s ashes, where we scattered my mother’s. The child’s parents are getting married. I hardly spoke to him, but he seems a decent bloke, attentive to his daughter.
Peter invited me, on the occasion of his thirtieth birthday.
-You’re not old enough to have a nephew aged 30, people tell me.
-I have an older sister who married young.
“I had him when I was fifteen,” joked S.
He has moved in with Amy, and they are getting married. He is happy with his job, and believes it has prospects, which pleases me. He picks things up. His MS has got no worse since he was put on a clinical trial, and he hopes the drug will be licensed. I worry for them, more than for my great-niece’s parents, and suppose they will face the difficulties couples face, and surpass them or not. She told me several things, some of which a parent might not want to hear, which I think are alright, actually. She is older than he is, and I like older women so I think that is fine and some people don’t.
It is never perfect. It is good enough.
I like her. I like her insecurities, they show sensitivity. And she arranged a good drink. I stayed with Fran, then walked along the Union canal to the restaurant, then to a pub, then another pub, then a third pub where Amy had arranged a downstairs room which she got for free if the people spent £300 on the bar. They did. The birthday cake was chocolate in the shape of a Wookie. Then I walked home along the canal, just before midnight, lit by tiny lights each side of the path, which was uncomfortable but safe enough.
Enough, enough, enough…
I went to Fran’s house, and was introduced to her daughter’s guinea-pig. It had beautiful long soft fur, but when I said yes I would like to cuddle it, and its cage was opened, it scuttled off into its box. I felt it is entitled to its autonomy so did not insist, but back in the living room picked up a teddy bear and stroked that.
I don’t like being human. I want to be a disembodied intellect.
-I know, said Tina.
Or, I want to be a fulfilled human. This need for closeness is such a pain when I cannot satiate it!