(So here is the first contributor blog, from my best friend Owen. He explains what it is like for him to have a best friend with a chronic illness.)
Georgie and I have been friends since we were… well as long as I can remember! We often met on Sunday afternoons at the Granwell Social Club in Plaistow, where we would tag along with our parents, who would be there having a few drinks and requesting songs from the DJ Rob. I was always up and down on the stage as I’ve always had a fascination over vinyl records, so I would pick out the ones I like and even put them on.
Us kids would play games, drinking Coca-Cola and eating packets of crisps. When the Nintendo DS came out, we would battle it out on Mario Kart, and send messages on Picto Chat. I also remember Georgie adding me on Bebo, the days before Facebook. And now it’s all WhatsApp, Facebook and FaceTime.
Georgie was there for me to talk to when I lost my mum, and she’s always been there for me through tough times, but I’ve always been there likewise, like when she went through her break up with her ex and then when she lost her nanny Shirley. We were on FaceTime every day, even if we didn’t have much to say, I think it’s nice that we will always be there for each other.
I’ve seen lots of ups and downs ever since Georgie has been suffering from Endometriosis and all the pain she’s been in, even to a point where I’ve gone to visit her in hospital. When Georgie had the operation on her Endo, we thought that would be the last we would see of it, but then to add insult to injury, She then later finds out she has Fibromyalgia.
Georgie and I do laugh a lot, and when I mean a lot…We laugh until we cry sometimes. The amount of times we will mishear each other, we the repeat what we think we have heard back to each other, and just fall about laughing. But now we discover, the next day Georgie will be in pain with her ribs where she’s been laughing so much. But I can’t ever see that changing.
Sometimes we plan to do things and go out together, but then sometimes out of the blue, I might get a message from Georgie saying that she is in too much pain and can’t make it. It can be a bit of a downer, but it’s just the way it is and it can’t be helped. So we just reschedule plans for another time and hope for the best.
A few years ago Me, Georgie, Aimee, Crena and a few others did the 10km Memory Walk for the Alzheimer’s Society, even then after half way around, I could see it was getting a bit of a struggle for Georgie and she was hurting. We call ourselves Dementia Friends after the organisation because the pair of us are just a pair of scatterbrains. We’re doing the Memory Walk again this year, and I must say she is a warrior and has her fair share of battles, but it’s all for a good cause.
I’m proud to call Georgie my best friend. I wouldn’t change her for the world! Except for the Endo and Fibro, I’d get rid of those if I could, but sadly…I’m no doctor!
– Owen. X