Reality TV star Vicky Pattison has tearfully described the time she spent with late friend Paul Burns before his sudden death as “a gift”.
The former Geordie Shore star wept as she recounted the birthday night out in June she spent with bar owner Burns, who was found dead aged 37 the next day.
Pattison told ITV’s Loose Women: “We had all been out for a night out. It was a makeshift birthday because I had missed his, I’d been in South Africa.
“He was over the moon. I remember coming home and tweeting, ‘I’ve got the best friends in the world’.
“Looking back, I was given that one last night just as like a gift.
“Paul was famous for loving a night out but never getting a hangover. He never struggled, so even if he had the wildest night out, he would still be the first person in the group chat, straight away making you laugh.
“So when we didn’t hear from him straight away we became concerned.”
Pattison revealed she turned to alcohol following Burns’s death, admitting that wine and chicken nuggets became her “staple diet” for a couple of months.
She admitted her grief caused her to postpone her wedding to fiance John Noble.
Pattison said: “It didn’t feel right to be planning something so happy when you don’t feel happy.
“And even worse, when you do feel happy you feel guilt about being happy, because why should I feel happy?”
Pattison said she wanted to use her platform to let others who have lost people close to them know “it’s OK not to be OK”.
She said: “For ages I didn’t want to accept that Paul was gone. I just wanted to get my head down and go to the gym and act like things were normal, and expect him to keep walking through that door or pop up in a group chat. He’s not going to.
“Don’t let anyone say to you ‘pull yourself together’ or ‘come on, it’s going to be all right’ or ‘time’s a great healer’. You don’t need that. You’re allowed to feel how you want to feel, so feel it.”