29-05-37 to 27-06-2020
It is the saddest of truths that we all hope to outlive our parents and that to do so is so very painful. Mum died at home surrounded by family in my arms. It is the most painful experience I have ever endured, and still remains very raw. But I am glad that I gave her what she wanted and I was able to fulfil my promise of looking after her at home. In these dark days of Covid, to be lost and confused on a hospital ward as she was some three weeks earlier, with only telephone contact is not what we would have wanted for her and nor did she. I can’t praise the NHS highly enough, they really came through with such a comprehensive care package that we never felt anxious and were able to look after her needs emotionally whilst a fantastic team did all the heavy work.
Dad of course is completely lost, having been married for 64 years there is a rather large Mum shaped hole. But he is doing well, he’s mastered the washing machine, is starting to integrate back into society as safely as he can and has found the ready meal aisle in Waitrose, its early days but the first shoots of growth look promising. And the beauty of having a large family is that we all rally around and one of us is either seeing him or is in contact with him morning, noon, afternoon and evening.
We had a lovely service for Mum, with just my brothers, sister and our children, which started off with a last trip up the town for Mum to see who was out and about, she would have loved that, her favourite thing was to just ‘nip up the town’. How lucky to live in a place nearly all your life that you can do that. The humanist was perfect and outlined Mum’s very eclectic past wonderfully and we had a very small, but perfectly formed wake, with us all making sandwiches together and drinking tea and gin, doing all the good stuff that families do best. It was perfect, with its mismatched china, begged and borrowed crockery and cutlery and two big cakes to sustain us when we started to fade. Mum would have been proud.
I’m still deep in grief, but this weekend I am aiming to get back up to my allotment, to wrestle with weeds, pick some runner and broad beans and try to come to terms with all that has been. There is an awful lot I don’t understand and an awful lot of why’s, but in my heart I know it was her time and there was nothing more any of us could have done.
Rest in peace Mum, God Bless. x