Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Two years and sixteen days and the pain is as fresh as ever

I've taken a break, well actually more of a few terms, to allow my heart and soul to process the loss of my lovely daughter, Mel. Despite time passing (2yrs and 1mth today), the pain is as fresh as ever, I miss her cuddles, her laugh, her beautiful, beautiful green piercing eyes, her singing and wow could she sing! and her kindess for so many in her life and yes, I miss her being the greatest pain in the butt at times when she drove me completely to distraction - it was at those times that I should have loved her the most, but like someone who is wounded and hurt, I pushed her away far too many times than I should have and for that I will grieve the most. Despite all her health issues, she tried her hardest at what were in the end insurmoutable obstacles and now I am lost without her, my only child. People say ' the pain gets easier, once all the 'firsts' are over, it will get easier to carry on. It doesn't. The pain sits in my chest like a big hard lump, never to be removed, never to be forgotten. She wasn't an angel, she made mistakes, but don't we all and for better or worse, she was my daughter, mistakes and all. I brought her into this world but I didn't get the chance to be with her when she died. She chose that time and my saddest regret was that she died alone, with no-one there to tell her to hang on, we loved her, help was coming. Something died in me too that day and I'm not the same person any more. I don't find joy and happiness in my life, I don't even know where to look anymore. Oh, I go to work, I care for my patients, I get a certain joy of helping them at the worse time of their lives and in most cases I get to see them go home to carry on and live another day despire their health, because for them every day is precious, every moment one they want to live. I don't know how to find peace in my heart and i don't know how muchh longer I can go on feeling so goddam empty inside. I can't even pray any more. It's like that song 'Jesus take the wheel, I can't do this anymore" - well that's where I'm at the moment, wishing he would take the wheel

Sunday, December 26, 2010

What a difference a day makes

I wrote the last blog two days before Xmas when I was feeling raw and emotional about spending the first Xmas without Mel being at home. I was angry, upset, sad. Well, I'm still sad, and I think I will be for a long time. - the death of a child, no matter how old, does that to you, it changes how you think, feel, see things and others. But Christmas Day was lovely for a few reasons. Firstly, I went out to the beach and released some balloons. I watched them as they darted up, up and into the clouds. I watched until they were a tiny speck in the sky, until I couldn't see them any more. I felt strangely at peace. I then went home and spent time just being by myself, pottering, with the tv on quietly in the background, more for company than I was particularly interested in seeing what was on. In the afternoon, I went to my sister and brother-in-laws for dinner. Twenty seven people gathered around the Xmas table; sisters, brothers and sons-in-law, husbands, wives, children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, cousins. Family from close by and from overseas. The table took up the entire length of the living and dining room. Xmas candles were dotted along the table. One candle remained unlit. When Mel died, I was fortunate to have some of her favourite blue cups and saucers I decided to take two of the cups and make home-made perfumed candles. They aren't perfect, but they meant a lot to me. One cup and saucer I took to the Xmas dinner and was just going to quietly light it along with the others. When everyone had gathered around the table, Mel's cousin, Chris, drew everyone's attention to the candle and said "there is one more candle to light - this is in memory of Mel". She then lit it. It was simple and yet so perfect. I didn't know she was going to do it, and it was such a touching and appropriate way to remember her on Xmas Day, amongst family. We spoke her name often and it felt good not to have to avoid talking about it. Earlier in the day I had said to my sister that they mustn't avoid talking about her to 'spare' my feelings, they must talk about her if they wanted to, and it was ok with me.

So the first "first" is over - it was hard not having her here with me, but it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. And that's down to family and friends who gathered around and surrounded me with love and comfort. I am so grateful for that and them.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

One of those dreaded "firsts"

It's eight months and a bit since Mel died. As Christmas approaches in two days, I find myself for the first time ever dreading it. Today I got an email from a dear friend in Oz and she wrote.... "I hope you are well, I know how much you love xmas and wanted to wish you all the best for xmas and the new year. I appreciate this year has been very difficult for you and I hope you are spending time with family and friends". I love Christmas normally, the decorations, the trees, christmas cards, finding presents for family that are a little bit different and special, decorating at work. Waiting for Mel to come home, so that we can watch "Love Actually" on Xmas Eve and open just one present each before we head to bed. Mel loved Xmas, not so much the presents although she put a lot of thought and thoughtfulness into buying for family, but she loved family, period. Even though some years were more difficult than others for a variety of reasons, when she was home she could put aside her inner demons for a time and just be content. This year there is no Xmas Eve sitting together chatting and hanging out, no movie, no opening "just one present". So this year, for the first time ever, I hate Xmas. Hearing the xmas songs, people with their "ho, ho, ho" attitude, the pain of listening to others talk about buying for their children, waiting for their kids to come home from away to be with them. It's so damn hard and I'm so damn angry - at Mel, at myself and at the world generally for daring to carry on as if nothing has happened. Ridiculous and self indulgent I know, but that's where I am right now. And I'm not going to beat myself up about it. I figure after having a daughter for 36 years and then losing her so suddenly, I'm entitled to whatever feelings I have and no-one can take that away from me.

So that's where I am in this moment of time. And no doubt I will pull myself up by the socks, join my family on Xmas day and try and make the best of a lousy situation. Because its not their fault that Mel isn't here, it's not her fault either. It's just what happened and my family shouldn't be made to feel guilty or find less enjoyment in what has always been a fun and special day. I've even put up a small tree and lights, nothing as fancy as I usually do, but they are cheery and I have always loved fairy lights. Mel did too.

So here's to Mel, Merry Xmas sweetheart, miss you and will always love you. (I know I'll get over being angry one day too, see you when I see you).


Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Time passes

It's been four months now since my daughter died. I have good days and bad days, but overall I think I'm doing pretty well. Work is it's own kind of therapy, and friends and family continue to give me love and support. I talk to her every day, and light candles, visit the grave and tidy it up - winter has been very wet this year. I am hoping to work towards getting a headstone in time, but for now she has two blue pots and a sandstone with flowers in each, so at least there is some colour. One of the things that was/is important to me is to have her photos around where I can see them every day - I have this fear that I will forget what she looks like, though I know that's not likely, but still it is something that for now I need to do.

I said I would tell you a little about her. Well, Mel was a singer and pianist and loved music from many genre, though her favourite singers were Kate Bush and Alanis Morissette - she would play their CD's very loudly especially when she was driving in the car and would sing along. She wrote her own music and lyrics and had a CD made called "White Lament". She also has a video on YouTube - it's a little dark for me but shows her talent. She had wonderful friends and they tell me she was very wise, loyal and loving. She would go out of her way to help anyone in need, often to her own detriment, but she was also headstrong, argumentative, frustratingly logical and illogical at the same time, could argue the hind leg off a donkey and should have been a politician - but she didn't like them much anyway.

She was also mum to a beautiful daughter who has just turned 18yrs and has inherited Mel's musical talent, singing and playing the piano. So I am happy that her talent will live on.

Well that's enough for now. I will post some more in the future.

In the meantime, take care, stay safe.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


My much loved daughter, Mel, died on 16th April, 2010. It has been a very sad time for her dad and me and her family and friends, coming to terms with losing her so suddenly. Some days I feel as though I am drowning in grief, and can barely put one foot in front of the other, and then on other days, I feel quite calm and almost peaceful. Grief has no boundaries and decides when and where it wants to kick you. I have so many unanswered questions and that makes me angry, wanting to lash out at the most stupid things, like the driver in front of me who takes too long to pass through the intersection, or someone who goes by in a car blasting the horn or playing music too loudly, or the phone going for the umpteenth time. I know it is friends and family calling and I love them for wanting to comfort me, so then I feel guilty and ungracious. I know time, and only time, will ease some of the pain, but as one mother said to me recently - the pain never goes away, it is always there, but you carry on, and it does get easier. Here's hoping.

In time, I will tell you a little more about Mel, but not yet. I am living in the present at the moment, and that's all I can deal with just now.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Is it worth it?

I've almost given up writing this blog, as you will see that it has been three months since the last post. That's because I have discovered Facebook and find it instant gratification to post and often get a quick reply from friends. It's a great place to keep up to date with happenings around the globe. I also find I'm just too tired to write anything witty or newsworthy here, so sadly, this may be my last post for a while - we shall see. In the meantime, I hope you are happy, healthy, safe and warm/cool (as the case may be).

As always, take care, and stay safe.

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