Life Stands Still (again)

Been here before and I remember the feeling

Posted by Jo Turner on December 31, 2018

Life Stands Still (again)

I must write. It will bring some normality back into my life.

My life has been suspended again from an emotional point of view, and everything in between.

We all have to face death at various times in our lives. I try to face death with a certain knowing that everything is as it’s meant to be, and although I may desperately miss a loved one, it will be ok. I have, over the years learnt to live along side death, sadly, on many occasions.

And so I come to the point, when I share with you that my wonderful father died just a very short time ago. Less than 6 weeks ago to be precise. It is the end of an era, and when it happened I was totally lost for words.

The words are returning slowly, painfully, shyly, and willingly…

I had been mentally preparing for his death since he had a bad fall, a few years ago, which was followed by a hospital stay of nearly 2 months, and then daily home care. Much to the amazement of the nurses, his first ever over-night stay in hospital.

I hear my Mother’s words echoing in my head “He’s stronger than you think”. ☺

Never truer words spoken, from being told he may not survive, he went onto to live another few years to reach his wished for destination, his 90th. Those few years had their challenges both for him, and at times for us too.

Sitting here looking back, I can see how much love was in the air, as we did everything in our power to give Dad a good end of life, before his eminent death and the years lending up to it. It is the overriding feeling I have sat here, mulling over the events of the last few months.

It wasn’t always obvious at times, especially if it felt challenging, for example when getting up at 3:45am to get a flight southwards. But now, sat here with my photos of him on a slide show and some candles burning to invite the angels to gather round, I see only LOVE all around me.

It is Christmas, but it is the Winter Solstice that I focus on.

The long days will slowly start to lengthen now.

It feels good to focus on that, it is still a time to wrap up warm, and many more snowy and cold days lie ahead, but along with that, there will be more light as the days move on.

I will miss my Dad, I will miss the phone-calls and visits, but I will give thanks for the time we had together over the years, for being the wonderful father that he was, and for always being such a brilliant adviser on so many things.

I will remember that, and even in the darkest days I will always see some light.

I will endeavour to follow in some of his footsteps as the years go on.

He will forever be in my heart, and as this year draws to a close, I will look towards the New Year and remember all the things that made my Dad so special. I’m sure everyone does that, and I know there will be some of you out there reading this, having also lost your Dad. You are in my thoughts as I type, and yet again we adjust the sails of life and ensure we continue to steer a course onwards and upwards.

As my Dad said many years ago, when my Mum died – “You just have to get on with it”… life that is.

It will be a different year for sure next year, but his memory will live on. I am able to draw comfort from knowing he is with my Mum and my sister now. It will depend on your beliefs whether this resonates with you. It brings a certain level of acceptance, which at times can give small snippets of joy.

It is these small snippets of joy, which will sustain me on the darker days.

However, whilst writing today, I have learnt another lesson - you are never prepared for the final moment when life ebbs away and the silence of death flows in.

I pause and stare at the screen, the car headlights flow across my face as they head down the mountain for the night. I look up at the fir tree, that I love so much, and it is silently twinkling in the dark, as I take a deep breath, I know I will be ok, but oh how I’d give anything for one more day with my Dad.

And as a tear pricks at the corner of my eye, I will stop for a while to just be…

May your festive days be filled with love, and whether you have a new bereavement to adjust to, or are remembering a long lost loved one, remember the light always returns.

Thank you for being a part of my journey, with love and gratitude to you all ☺