Left Sarah behind and feeling quite mixed emotions about our reconnection. She looks bad. Like we’ve all aged since Uni, but she looks really old. Haggard even. Then again, she’s pregnant. Again. I asked her why she keeps doing it, having babies I mean. She said, ‘It just seems to happen.’ Well, nothing ‘just happens’ when Sarah’s involved. Ever.
It wasn’t until later in our conversation, in the middle of us talking about Donna’s girlfriend and betting on a wedding date, that Sarah said, ‘I guess I keep getting pregnant because, at this point, I don’t know what else to do in life. It happens really quickly, suddenly you’re a mum, and I look into the future and all I can see is being a mother, so I don’t…I don’t actively try to get pregnant, I just don’t stop it from happening.’
My silence spoke volumes. Seven years ago when we all started Uni, or even four years ago when we graduated, I never thought Sarah would become that woman. The one with no prospects other than motherhood. The one who lived to reproduce.
I don’t know. Then again, Sarah was never one to think past the immediacy of things. Off traveling without much savings, ‘Oh we’ll find work along the way.’ Leaving Mike for that yoga instructor. Being kicked out of Thailand for not bothering to sort a visa. I guess if all your life you’ve gone with whatever existed in the moment, and now 18-plus years of your life are decided for you, then it must be hard to see anything else.
I don’t know. It was a weird meeting. Each of us going through our quarter-life crisis. Sarah not achieving what she hopped, despite never having any real goals or dreams. Me, achieving what I set out to do (a career in publishing, my own place, and getting the man I pined after for years) but it not feeling right. That lack of freedom, the weight of it all. This isn’t necessarily what I want, and this doesn’t seem to be what Sarah wants.
Sarah and I talked, we reminisced, we chatted about everything that was going on in our lives. Pete’s not working, the kids are growing, and she’s preparing for another one. I’m stressed about work, worried that the weight of the Agency is now on me (since London and Paris have left), and well…I didn’t have the strength to say it, but I’m sure she noted by my tone, HP and I aren’t getting along.
I do think I’ll keep in touch with Sarah. We don’t live too far apart. But I don’t think our friendship will be like it was before. Instead, it feels a bit like a new friendship. Like someone I just met, someone who may live a different life than me, but we understand each others’ stresses.
I’m not ready to go back to Dundee. Not just yet.
I texted Goatee to see if he and his wife would like a visitor. I know that may sound odd to you, but over the last few years Goatee and I have been keeping in touch. HP and I even went to his wedding. I see his son when he’s over from Australia, and Goatee’s become a close friend. Well, as close as you can be with someone who lives two hours away, and has a life of his own with his new brilliantly lovely wife. But we do get together for coffee or a drink when I’m in Glasgow, and I’ve stayed the night at his place when I have to be in Glasgow late for work and there are no trains back to Dundee. His wife is such a doll, and I adore her and her daughter.
But, leaving Sarah, the weight of it all was baring down on me. Ever since Rich’s wedding, the reality of the trajectory of my life has been quite prominent. And I wanted to talk to someone who knew me when I was young, and stupid, and had no idea what it meant to be responsible. (Yes, I’m still young, I just don’t feel like it. Which is probably the problem.)
Plus, Goatee is no longer in publishing. It all got a bit much for him, so he’s bought into an art gallery and manages that. So, I don’t know, I wanted to talk to him about Giles. About whether or not I should stay at the Agency. And, maybe deep down, I wanted to talk to someone who was familiar and wouldn’t judge me.
Alas, Goatee nor his wife are home for visitors. He responded to my text by stating that he’s in London for the weekend. But ‘Let’s catch up soon.’
So, here I sit at the Counting House by the station, nursing a Diet Coke, and dreading it all.
BTW: If you don’t know what a Quarter Life Crisis is, check out this blog which just say sit all. The blog is aptly named A Quarter Life Crisis Blog.