Another Christmas and New Year have come and gone. As I packed away the Christmas tree into it's box, I was thinking how long it was since I first bought it. It is a lovely imitation spruce, and still looks good today. Well, I finally remembered it was 1999! You were in your first year of work at a Computer Company, and had brought your future wife to stay with us all for Christmas. I have it on the photo of us all, on Christmas Day, alongside your young brother, the two of us, and you and the one you would marry in November 2000.
It still looks good today. After 14 years. How can it be so long?It seems like another lifetime away now. I cannot remember being completely happy since then. And it is a fallacy to say that "time heals" . How could it? We bear the scars of grievous loss. A parent should not have to lose their child, Matt. But thousands do, across the world. I do know that the passage of time helps us to learn how to cope. How to begin remember, without a total collapse into the maelstrom of the immediate aftermath of the catastrophic event.
I read the blogs of other grieving parents,
I find this touching, as it is like being part of a community which is seeking to make sense of their lives here and now. How to go on. How to remember their children. It is that remembering which is so very important to all of us, it keeps them alive.
Some of them contact me, and some write comments, which I find very touching. The fact that they can remember you Matt, in the words I write and the photos I post, is a comfort to me.
I looked for your words that I found after you died, kept in a box of odds and ends, alongside a photo you had taken on New Year's Eve 2005.
Our first New Year's Eve without you was so completely awful I wanted to howl and curl up under a duvet. The weather outside was equally stormy, matching my mood. There was no comforting me. I felt as though my insides were ripped out.
Yet, today, after 6 complete years without you, and it will be 7 in September, We are learning that we can go on living and enjoying some of what our lives have to offer.
But, Matt, as I packed away the tree, I was thinking of you and my heart lurched.
Your words on that New Year's Eve are now so poignant. You were never to see the end of 2006.
So, I post your photos, and the ones you took, and like me, you had a camera handy.
So, Matt, there will always be that sense of missing you, underlying our walk into 2013.
Forever loved, forever remembered.