Guess who’s back, back again, Paula’s back, tell a friend….. Guess who’s back, Guess who’s back….la…la…la
If you’re under the age of 25, you probably haven’t a clue what that was about but if you’re old like me, you’ll be all over it 🙂
So yeah, I’m back! It’s been a while – six months to be precise and so so much has happened in that time! It feels like a lifetime ago when I was last writing on here.
To be honest I’m not even sure where to start in explaining why I haven’t been posting. If you know me in real life you will know, but if not I guess the best place to start is from the beginning. I warn you this may be a bit of a tear jerker, so I’d get a tissue or five if you’re brave enough to keep reading.
On 20th August 2016, the exact day when my last post was published, my lovely dad was rushed to hospital with kidney failure. He had been diagnosed with stage 4 prostate cancer three and a half years prior, for which he was receiving natural homeopathic treatment. A choice that he had made which enabled him to have a brilliant quality of life, allowed him to enjoy all the things he loved such as golf and long country walks and most importantly had left him completely pain-free. He was in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) for two weeks before being moved to a different hospital with a specialist Renal unit. It was the most up and down time of my life, we were given good and bad news continuously. Describing our emotions as a roller coaster would have been an understatement! I was absolutely appalled with the way both he and us, as his family was treated during this very difficult time and I will definitely be posting separately about this in more detail sometime soon. He spent a total of five weeks in the hospital before being discharged and as a man with severe white coat syndrome, he was so brave during this time.
Despite being sent home, however, his kidneys weren’t improving and he was having to go back into the unit three days a week for dialysis which was absolute torture for him and he was mentally and physically exhausted by it. Exactly three weeks after he left the hospital, on 7th October, he very sadly passed away in his sleep.
We were all absolutely devastated by the news. He wasn’t just my dad he was one of my best friends and I miss him dearly every single day. His passing has left a hole in my heart that no-one else could ever fill and nor would I want them to. We spoke often, usually via email and text and then a long phone conversation to catch up every couple of weeks or so. I also saw him a fair bit too, we were very close. He was truly one of a kind, obviously, I am biased but he really was a gentleman. He had time for everyone, especially those less fortunate than himself and he was an absolute wind-up merchant, always loved to have a joke and bring a bit of laughter to any situation. I am so grateful for having such a powerful and inspiring influence in my life.
Of course, things will never be the same for us but life does go on and we all have to live it. It is bloody short after all! I will do a more in-depth post on my coping strategies and tips very soon.
We sent him off with a very ‘un-traditional’ funeral! He was carried into ‘The Saint’ theme tune which was his favourite TV programme and a classic by Chas and Dave also featured. We celebrated his life afterward with a bit of a party. It was deliberately all very ‘him’ and he would have loved every minute of it. He always taught us to smile and laugh even through the darkest of times and that’s what we all did and continue to do, just for him.
“Life does not cease to be funny when people die, anymore than it ceases to be serious when people laugh”
I’m sorry if this post was a bit deep – I chose to share this online because it’s not something I am ashamed to talk about and quite frankly my dad would have loved the attention! He read every one of my posts from when I started this blog last year and was incredibly proud.
Death is one of those taboo subjects that we all shy away from but we will all experience the loss of a loved one at some point in our lives so if I can help someone else who is going through it, then it’s very much worth discussing.
I’ll be following up this post very soon with what else I have been up to in the last six months but this one is dedicated to the one and only Gary Hopper.