The past month has been a reflective one. I’ve started a new job and all of my energy has been put into advancing my career as well as flitting down to Devon to spend time with my darling pals as much as possible. Did I mention I spent a week contemplating the meaning of life in Greece? No. Well I did and it gave me the time to really think about what has happened over this past year; which seems to have sped by in fast forward like a 90’s VHS so fast that I haven’t given myself time to see the black from the white and the grey in the middle.
It’s nearly a year on from the ‘worst day’ and I want to take a moment to reflect on my life without him. As I’ve mentioned a number of times, my gramps was my greatest love, my best friend and the greatest father figure I could ever have asked for. His passing and the time prior as he dwindled from the man he was into fragments of life and death, still holds strong in my mind, not resting as a memory but so vivid it feels like ground hog day. I’d like to tell you that the pain is more bearable, it is not. I’d like to tell you that when I think of him I only remember the good times and don’t still see him passed in a hospital bed, but I can’t. Grief is relentless and holds no prisoners, it will lay dormant and creep up on you when you least expect it and it will paralyse you.
For the past few months I have buried him deep in my heart, so deep that I couldn’t feel anything for him, no love, no joy, no sadness. But as with most pain it cannot be ignored for long… it began resurfacing whilst in Greece, when I was on a boat and all of my being wished he was there laughing with us, or when we looked at hidden history, I knew how much he would have loved it. And I missed him. The kind of missing where you can’t breathe, your heart physically hurting as if every beat was one too many without them. And now when I see old men walking down the street, walking his walk, tears fill my eyes before I even know I am feeling the loss.
But I have put his picture back on my desk at work in the hope that I can block out the pain and replace it with positive, yet so much of me is still denying that he has gone. Even though I obviously know he has, my heart just won’t accept it. I know as time passes his memory will be filled with so much joy and I cling on to that hope to get me through the pain even for just a moment.
His passing has caused me to feel a loneliness that I have never felt before but his passing has also made me appreciate so much more. The joy from; wearing jazzy trousers, car raves with my friends when stuck in traffic or feeling down beat, opening the door to my own flat to receive a warm welcome from the cat, cuddles with friends children, autumn walks to work surrounded by the beauty of fallen leaves, street art and so much more.
Death has taught me to seek out the beauty in the every day, find the joy in the darkest of days and love harder. It’s taught me to be kinder, stronger, hopeful and show love whenever possible. My relationship with my grandfather cannot be replaced, the void cannot be filled but I can surround it with as much glitter and sparkle as possible and remind myself that the last thing he said to me was ‘I love you Rosie’ and not even grief can ruin that.
Me and the Legend 18 months before his passing, Christmas 2013.