I said it to N because N is the sassiest, most cut through the crap person I know. We were lying in the sunshine, doing nothing together in the way that only really good friends can, and I said,
'I've not told anyone this and I know I'm gonna sound like a nob but I can't stop thinking about the fact that I had everything I ever wanted. I had the man and the baby and the house by the sea and now it's all gone.' She turned to me and smiled, which seemed like an odd reaction, but then she said,
'You did and you can have it again if you want, or you can have a new kind of happy.' For the first time in a long time I felt okay. I felt more than okay, I felt excited because the only thing better than having what you want is working towards what you want, when you know what that is.
If you focus on what could have been - the one that got away, the dreams that stayed in your head - you'll die with what ifs instead of the life you've lived. Watch any child transform an empty toilet roll into a spaceship and you'll know that life is malleable; the breadth of your imagination is your only limitation.
So this year I'm going to find a new kind of happy and I think you should too. The baby that wasn't to be and the job they wouldn't give you, maybe they were making way for another adventure, with a not yet imagined outcome. I want you to try to remember that because when he stands at my door and hands me the child we made, I'll be trying to remember it too.