This will be our first Christmas without my father. And this year, an unfamiliar sense of disquiet, even dread, keeps intruding into the preparations for the season…
There is no feast like Christmas. But this year, Dad will not be there. He will not sit at the head of the table, always smiling, always humming a tune, presiding over the easy familiarity that is the most treasured gift of families.
All his laughter is quietened. His great, bright light is extinguished.
And while it is our greatest comfort to know that he will always be in our hearts, the incontrovertible truth is that he is with us no more. Despite nine months since his passing, that absence is still wounding.
Bereavement is cruel. Only time will mend it.
I did not expect grief to be first a frenzy, come crashing in, a marauder to the mind. Despite my father’s illness, I was not prepared, not ready for the rupture, for the wailing distantly heard that you come to realise is your own, your plea for an impossible return.
There is no return. That is the rupture.
You bury the people you love most with a heart hammering grief, as if the disturbance passes from your mind to the place that could better bear it…
Bereavement is cruel. Take your time. – Gript