crawley 010.

another wednesday night of me sat in my bed crying.

today, after close to 30 years the doors on Mothercare Crawley closed on Haslett Avenue. you might find it weird that i’m sad about this, but, if you know me well, you’ll know that for me, and the people i met there, it was always more than just a shop.

you know in ‘love, actually’ when rowan atkinson is all ‘it’s so much more than a bag’ when he’s gift wrapping the necklace? that’s my response when people are bewildered that i can be so upset that a shop is closing; ‘it’s so much more than a shop’.

for the mothercare massive, as we affectionately refer to ourselves, it was more than those four walls, it IS more than those four walls. it was more than a job. it was a second home, where we had our second family. all of us a sandwich short of a picnic.

every life event you can think of, we went through it there, together. we had engagements and weddings, pregnancies, miscarriages, births. we’ve had heart breaks and make ups. parents emigrating, people ‘coming out’, deaths of parents, spouses, siblings and grandparents. moving homes, moving countries, going to and graduating university. cancer, depression, heart surgeries… and everything else.

we all got through it together. in those four walls.

although i am so heartbroken, i am also so so SO thankful for the last 11 years.

we really were/are like a family in every sense of the word. we love each other but we also have /had moments where we hated each other. we fought, we swore at each other (sorry, val) but, my god, did we laugh. they are all memories that i won’t bore you with, mainly for the reason that you probably don’t care, but also because most of them are probably ‘you needed to be there’ moments.

the women that have worked there have had such an impact on my life, it is immeasurable. they have been my biggest cheerleaders for the last decade, they have laughed with me (and at me). they have lifted me up. these women sewed me back together when i came unravelled. they are part of my fabric. and that will never change. they have been with me through my transformation from a shy, timid teenager to the opinionated sarcastic ray of sunshine you’ve all come to know and tolerate (you can all mainly thank diane for that)

august 30th 2006, little 17 year old me went for a group interview for a weekend job. september 3rd i got a phone call from diane telling me i had successfully got the job. she then promptly fucked off to run another store, not returning until the new year. the best part is, when she first came back, i really hated her. little did i know the influence she would end up having on my life. twat. p.s i’m still really sad Mrs T never looked in the cupboard.

dennis the menace… top bird. swear down.

maudy… no one had better arguments than we did. our arguments were special though because it was peter andre that brought us back together. on saturday before we go out lets unbolt the lift one more time.

kelvin… no one busts moves quite like you. the best person to go diamond hunting with.

norman price… you legend. you’re still welcome for us all turning up in suits to your wedding reception.

sophia loren… i just bloody love you. you really are my favourite ever. you big weirdo.

kathina… i look forward to more drunken confessions on saturday, don’t fight it, it’s tradition now.

maisie…you crack. me. up. i’m so shinnnyy.

momma T… the maker of cakes and all things ELC.

lorraine… please come and work for me in croydon, no one has ever made POS look as nice as you. or cleaned cupboards as well.

dino, i will never forgive you for hating cliff or hiding my xmas cds.

tori may… adore you. always have. always will. p.s just to clear it up once and for all dublin isn’t in scotland, ok?

charles in charge – ‘here comes colin, and he’s got a big knoooob’

christopher robin… you da best

the ones that won’t see this. mo, val, sue, christine…

and everyone else that was there over the years. claire, mollie, kerry, reanna, lou, amy, sophie, hayley… and so many more that i have definitely forgotten… charge it to my head, not my heart.

in all seriousness, i really think my guardian angels were working overtime the day i got that interview, and the job. when i think back on the last 11 years of my life, i know i would never have survived life without the ladies i met in there or maybe i would have but they have always made it more bearable. even though i haven’t actually worked at that branch for over 2 years now, it’s always been my place.

more than anything those four walls, and the people in them, showed me that life is about people. the people you surround yourself with are the ones that make or break it and those ladies certainly made it. i’ll keep the memories of the good old days folded on a piece of paper in the back pocket of my mind for safekeeping. there will never be a day when i don’t look back on those memories and smile.

the memories are ours.

i love you, all. (except denise because we don’t do emotions, you’re just average)

xoxo your little micks

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