It’s taken me two weeks to write this blog, because I’ve not really known how to express myself, or felt I should. Which for those who know me, may seem surprising…..but this is both personal and restrictive, and not really mine to tell.
My last blog to you was all full of the joys of christmas drinking and gift wrapping, and then suddenly the atmosphere in the house changed, and we were really not expecting it….
I had gone out with my team for our Christmas party on the Wednesday night and when I got home the hubby told me his mum had once again been admitted to hospital. Neither of us thought much of it as this was her 4th visit this year, however the hubby suggested she may not be out for Christmas day, but would hopefully be out the next day. This would give her at least one turkey dinner with us, something she’d been talking about for weeks.
The next evening he went to see her, and then came home as normal. He went to work Friday morning, and I settled into day one of the Christmas holidays with the boys. Then I got the phone call, she hadn’t made it through the night, and I needed to tell him. He was still on the train on his way to work, it was the hardest call I had ever had to make. He came home a ghost, and the Christmas vibe in our house dissipated at pace.
We told the boys, who were devastated, and gradually he told his remaining extended family members. It was 22nd December, 3 sleeps till Santa, my boys had suddenly lost their adored Nanny, and my husband had lost his very dear mum…..
We got through Christmas, with as much joy as we could muster. I needed to keep the balance right, always remembering, but also tastefully not ruining Christmas. We toasted every drink to her, (my god there were lots!!) and on 25th ate the turkey she had bought for us all. Her gifts from us were under the tree, as were her cards and cheques for the grandchildren. I printed various photos for all the kids with their Nanny and framed them, finding an extra special one for the hubby. Of course the youngest wore his best outfit, just for her.
I personally felt her there with us every day. She was a huge part of our family life, in particular on Sunday lunchtimes, when she would enjoy half a bottle of red and a good roast. She’d sit watching us potter and chatter away about our lives, and this Christmas was no different. To me anyway……the hubby is not there yet, nor do I expect him to be for some time.
We’ve not yet had the death certificate, so have not been able to plan anything, just tried to keep spirits up. We are immensely fortunate to have some amazing friends who have rallied around and distracted the hubby in particular, but I know this will take a while.
So I’m really sorry for the delay in the blog, and I’m so sorry the first in 2018 is not the usual chirpy piece, but I would like you to take this as a reminder to hug those closest to you. Give them a kiss before you say goodbye and remember to call them back. You just never know if it’s the last time you’ll see or speak to them.
The last time I saw my lovely mother-in-law she was trying a jalapeno for the very first time, at 76yrs old!! It was the tiniest piece and it blew her head off, oh how we laughed at her!! It is a great last memory and great quality time, for me and all the kids, and I thank her for this.
I’ll be back with gusto next week, I promise, and if this past fortnight has taught me anything it’s to make the most of now, so expect big things in 2018 – this is our year!!! Love to all of you who have experienced similar pain this holiday, when you least expect it. As I said to the family this Christmas, it’s your job now to “Make it count!”, don’t let them down.
Happy new year to you all! I’m saving all the funnies till next time – I have plenty! But for now this is dedicated to Rita….I love you ‘Reet’, you were a fabulous Nanny to my kids and an incredible mother-in-law, and I know I was the envy of many of the hubby’s friend’s wives – I got very, very lucky.
I hope you’re up there dancing a totally painless jig to a bit of Brendan Shine right now!! Always in our hearts and at the end of our dining table drinking a vino….X