One of the main reasons I started this blog a couple of months ago was to help me through the grieving process of my Dad. Monday 12th November marked the two month anniversary of his death. I was planning on writing this post on Monday, but emotions took over and i didn’t feel strong enough to write about Dad.
My Dad was 83 when he died, and had been suffering with prostate cancer for the last two years or so. He went downhill too rapidly for my liking and passed away after a month in hospital at the end of his life. His last week was spent in a hospice and I am so thankful that he was transferred to a nice environment to pass peacefully. Hospitals are too clinical and restrictive for patients who are terminally ill.
When my Dad went into hospital, he went with the attitude of getting better. No-one really knew (I think) that he didn’t have long left. his cancer at that time was being managed with injections and blood tests, all of which were working up until the point the pain took over.
I think Dad gave up slightly when he went through those hospital doors. He stopped eating and would only drink when encouraged. Watching your Dad deteriorate is not a nice thing to have to do, and still I don’t know how I coped with the visits every day, and staying strong and positive for Mum.
Once Dad was transferred to the hospice, we all knew he wasn’t coming home. His spirits rose in the last week and for that we are all thankful. I know we all hoped he would make some miraculous recovery, but deep down we knew it wouldn’t really happen.
The hospice itself was a very peaceful place and I cannot thank the staff enough for what they do for their patients and the families. Nothing was too much trouble. We were fortunate enough to be blessed with good weather in Dad’s last week, so a lot of the time I spent out in the garden of the hospice, enjoying the sunshine and the peacefulness that came with it. There was a lovely fish pond, bird aviary and plenty of seating. I just wish Dad had seen it, but he wasn’t strong enough to want to be taken to the garden.
The process of dealing with grief is different for everyone. Dad was my hero and I miss him so so much. Most days I forget and carry on with the day as normal. It’s only at night when all the day’s thoughts are gone that he creeps back into my mind again.
I managed the funeral and interment with the utter most dignity, as did my Mum. I knew she wanted to keep her stiff upper lip in public so I stayed strong for her during that. It has taken until today however for me to revisit his resting place. His ashes are buried in a lovely scenic woodland burial ground where he wished to rest.
After the funeral, I waited to revisit him as I thought Mum should be the first to go. The life and circumstance gets in the way and I wanted to visit on my own.
I only stayed a few minutes because I still can’t believe he is never coming back, or I will never see him again, so looking at his plaque is still very surreal for me. I did have a nice chat with him and filled him in on what he’s missed over the last months. I can only hope next time I visit it will become easier.