"Good friends, family and naturally buddies will never need persuading to stand beside you when you most need them. They will demonstrate their staying power through thick and thin. They are much more than 'fair weather' contacts in our lives, who turn up for the party and the rest of life's freebies, eat their fill and then bugger off, leaving you to do the tidying up on your own!
Just the simple words of hearing them say, 'It's been great being here with you, but unless you need me to hang around a bit longer, I'll get off now', proves reassuring enough to know that you're never on your own unless you chose to be.
Over the past two years since I discovered that I had a terminal blood illness, I have had to dramatically change my lifestyle. There have been times, because of having no effective immune system where even the catching of a cold or bug could amount to the contraction of a possible death sentence, when I have been housebound for weeks on end, particularly in bad weather.
However, during this period of incarceration my world has widened up once more in a way I could not have known. I have literally been indunated by offers of friendship from people, not only from the village of Portlaw in Ireland where I was born, the estate of Windybank in England where I grew up, but from across the globe. It now takes many hours daily to read and reply to my e-mails, check my posts and get back to writing my latest romantic novel. I also spend around an hour a day on my 'Thought for today' as this avenue allows me to express myself in raw emotional terms and in a more conversational style about whatever is on my mind at that precise moment in time.
Apart from keeping my writing skills honed, this amount of new daily contacts make me feel like I belong to a much wider group of people than I have ever known as well as making me feel a much loved person, which most of us are if we did but know it. Without leaving the house most days, by the end of it it is as though I have travelled far and wide along the path of old and new friendships. I have relearned that friendship always ends in love and understanding.
I hope that whatever time I am allowed to enjoy my newfound friendships that you all can remain a part of my daily thoughts. We are all angels with one wing; hopeless in flight until we accept we aren't alone and need to embrace another in order to achieve 'lift off.' To treasure the cultivation of new friendship, we need to treat people like beautiful paintings and put them in our best light.
As my dear mother used to remind me as a child, beware of taking unfair liberties with a good friend. She would say, 'Remember Billy, you can pick your friends and you can pick your nose, but you cross the line when you try to pick your friend's nose!' Have a nice day." William Forde: February 19th, 2015.