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>Influences: Lily

>Back in January 2006 I had an idea to write a series of entries on my previous blog about the people who have been a big influence on me and my life. I only actually wrote one entry before abandoning the idea. But it’s an idea that I’ve been thinking about resurrecting.

Then we come to yesterday and today when I had a few small reminders of Lily. Lily was the person who I wrote about it that one entry and she died seven years ago. And she’s been with me in my thoughts and in my heart these last few days. It was the sign I needed to tell me to continue those pieces.

Below is the journal entry I wrote about Lily; it was originally written Jan. 28, 2006.

Influences: Lily

I’ve been thinking lately that I would like to write some more about some of the people who have touched my life. Not the people who are a part of my daily life but the people who played a small but significant part.

Lily was a friend of my Nanny’s and I’d like to tell you about her.

I just came accross an mp3 in my collection of “The Birdie Song”. It’s a silly song but it’s one that calls a fond smile to my face as I think of Lily who the melody brings to my mind without fail whenever I hear it.

She was very old when I met her and gradually got more and more fragile.

She was really sweet and looking back now I can tell she loved me and my family like we were her own family. She didn’t have any family of her own you see as she was a “barnados baby” Everytime we visited Nanny she would take us to go and say hello and Lily always greeted us with hugs and kisses. We took her birthday and Christmas gifts and she brought us little things then and sometimes “just because”

I can remember her buying me an Elvis Presley video and whilst I loved that she’d thought of me I never watched it (I was about 14 or 15). I can remember the day she bought a lottery ticket with the previous nights winning numbers on and claimed to have one. I can remember her smile and how she was always pleased to see us.

If there is one thing I learnt from knowing Lily is that reaching out to someone can give them so much at the cost of so little to ourselves. And through knowing her I like to think that even if at the time i didn’t feel like i was getting anything from our visits now I know that i actually learnt a valuable lesson about humanity and caring.

I can’t remember exactly when Lily died but I know it’s about six years ago (because she died a few weeks before Lianne and her sixth anniversary is fast approaching). And I remember my Nanny telling us about the funeral and how as Lily always loved to dance they played “The Birdie Song” as her coffin was carried out of the church.

And so for me, The Birdie Song is Lily’s song. When we were tiny and at school discos we all used to sing:

“with a little bit of this and a little bit of that and shake your bum da da da”

as we did the dance, we did it for fun. Now I am 24 and probably strictly speaking too old for it but I still do it when I hear it. For fun… and for Lily, who loved to dance.

Now…it’s a year on from that writing, it’s seven years since she left us and I’m now 25. But I still think of her with love and a smile on my face. And I do the dance, just for her.

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