Rules are rules I suppose. A few weeks ago, the local council removed a memorial bench placed in the cemetery. It was only there a day – a really inoffensive simple bench with a brass plaque and inscription, inviting visitors to sit down and remember their friend and mum. The bench belonged to a distant family member who had died recently.
The family were distraught and I felt really upset too, even though I didn’t know the lady. She’s buried a few plots away from my mum, so they’ll be keeping each other company.
Anyway, I’d also thought about a bench as a memorial, but I don’t want the council nicking it. Benches can be a bit hard on the old bottom (I won’t use the word fanny, as it means front bits in the UK :) ), so I decided to buy a wooden patio set and some seat pads instead for our back garden.
Sounds weird, but I’m thinking of it as a present from mum. She was always reminding me how I needed to go outside more and enjoy the fresh air and sunshine – “You’re wasting your life”. Anyhow, it’s brilliant. Having always lived in flats previously, facing noisy main roads, we’ve enjoyed eating al fresco at home for the first time in our adult lives.
What a wonderful surprise! Whilst sitting in the pharmacy waiting for my prescription, who walks in none other than the manageress of the care home, where my mum spent her final weeks. (Well actually I saw two of her, because I’ve had a nasty bout of vertigo for the past week).
She greeted me with a huge hug (thankfully she hugged me, otherwise I would have hugged the ‘double’ I could see) and said, ‘’Your mum’s funeral was one of the loveliest I’ve ever been to’’. It was so nice to see her, hear those words and that she’d remembered my mum all this time later.
I haven’t seen any of the other people who attended the funeral since, so haven’t really got any idea about what they thought of it. I did worry, as the service was a little wacky for someone in their sixties, but then my mum was a bit of a character and I think the service reflected this.
Just now I saw my cruse counsellor for the final time. It’s done it’s job and kept me buoyant and sane for the last four months. I’m sad, but not as much as I thought I’d be. Saying goodbye is always hard, but it’s not the end – she’s suggested meeting up for a cup of tea at some point.
The UK holds a national lottery every Saturday night – the prize is usually millions. I used to think lucky buggers, wish it was me.
This morning, I found an ornate silver watch my mum gave me years ago. It was hidden away in an old spotty ceramic biscuit jar. I always meant to put a battery in it, but never did. From the moment I found it, it felt as though I had won the lottery.
Thanks mum, I need a watch – saves me fishing my mobile out of my pocket (which is dead half the time, as I always forget to charge it up).
Weekends are usually the worst time, finding your little gift has helped to make it better.
I always say goodnight to mum’s photo and kiss it before going to bed. In return I imagine / hear (I don’t know which), her voice say goodnight back to me. Last night I heard the words, “I’m sorry I had to go”. I replied, ”It’s ok, I understand”.
It’s been eight months last Tuesday since my mum left me. Two hundred and forty six days.
I now view life moving along like a conveyor belt. New people are always joining the conveyor belt at the start of it, others have fallen over the edge along the way, just like my mum did. Some people make it to the end, some only travel a short distance.
This evening especially I’ve got the sniffles. The last few days especially have been very difficult again. Tonight I put a bunch of red roses on the grave, cut from a bush in the back garden. I also visited the cemetery yesterday, empty handed and on a whim. As it was so late, I was nervous about being locked in until morning and had visions of me violently shaking the front metal gates all through the night.
It will be my brother’s first Birthday without my mum in a few weeks. I wonder how he will feel? My own first ‘without mum’ Birthday came and went in May – if I’m honest, I can’t even remember it.