Posted in Grief, hurt

My Niece, Gone too Soon


My niece, a beautiful young woman of 22, died on 28 February 2019

As a family, we are devastated at this loss.

Charne finished University last year and had started working.  She received her first months pay the day before she died.  She was on her way home from work, when a speeding Taxi Bus, coming from the opposite direction, too impatient to wait for a slower vehicle, tried to pass it.  He lost control, mounted the grass centre separating the 2 roads, and ploughed head on into my nieces’ car.  Then the bastard ran away.  Seriously.  He fled the scene.  Leaving a young woman dead,  and some of his passengers injured.

My nieces’ car is a total write-off.  She will never see another morning.  Never bring anymore joy to her parents and extended family.  She will never do another thing.  A young life, just beginning, and it’s over.  In the blink of an eye, gone.  She will never get engaged, married, or be a mother.  This young woman who always had a kind word for everyone.  Always smiling, she enjoyed her life.

She deserved to life.  She deserved to have all that life could’ve brought her.  And I know, in my heart of hearts, that her life would’ve been incredible.  What joy it would’ve been, being part of her future.  And because of one persons actions, because of taxi drivers’ thinking they can drive how they want, that joy has been taken away from us.

Her parents’ lost their firstborn daughter.  Their younger daughter, is now an only child.  Never again will she get to pester her big sister.  A sister she thought the world off.

I want to say so much more.  There was so much about Charne that could be said.  She was kind, loving, full of life, respectful, considerate, and the list goes on.  But my heart aches too much.

In the words of Terry Pratchett–

No one is actually dead until the ripples they cause in the world die away

Go peacefully my sweet girl.  You were well loved.

Goodnight sweet Charne, I love you and will miss you xx



Posted in Grief, hurt, love, mother, Uncategorized

Life Goes On


Its almost 4 months since we lost my Mum, and my world didn’t stop.  The downside, my little old dog died 3 weeks ago and I’m missing the mutt like crazy.  And although I feel like the Grim Reaper is stalking me, stealing everything I love (I know, melodramatic, right) I understand it is the cycle of life.

We all lose people and pets that we love dearly, and, for the most part we survive and come out the other side slightly damaged but stronger.

My mums death has made my dad and I even closer than ever, we’re in touch everyday, and I phone him roughly every 2 weeks.  I think a lot of the sadness I do feel with regards to my mum, is actually for my dad, for what he has lost and how drastically his life has changed.  And I’m thankful that he knows he can tell me how much he’s missing her, that he can talk to me about her.

And that’s an important thing.  Too many people avoid the subject when you’ve just lost a loved one.  Don’t avoid it, tell the person something you remember,  that you’re there if they need a shoulder to cry on or just be there and say nothing, let them cry or talk, it’ll do them good.  They really just need their loss acknowledged and that it’s ok for them to still get teary-eyed, even months or years after.  (My younger 2 sons still feel the loss of their father 18 years later)

To all those who have loved, and gone through the pain of loss, go cry, have a pity party, you’re allowed too.  You had a what was a great love, which is now gone but not forgotten.  The love is still there.

And to my mum I say, “What the hell woman, you said you’d live forever”  and you will, forever in our hearts and memories.

Posted in Grief, hurt, love, mother, Uncategorized

Time to Accept


It’s 4 weeks since my mum died.  And I’m still trying to be strong, and it’s not as easy as it was.  I’ve broke down twice, and pretty much cried on and off all day.  The first time it became too much, (my mum was dead almost 3 weeks), my partner was relieved, he was scared that I was still fighting the loss and locking my feelings away.

It’s hard for me to give in to the grief and go with it.  It’s less painful too lock it away and act like I’m ok.  When I finally broke down, it was because of something on TV.  It was so unexpected that I had no hope in hell of reining it in.  The pain, it was so bad I truly thought it would kill me.  It was twisting of my very soul and I felt as though it would never stop.  On and on it went, pulling tighter on my heart, and I could literally feel part of my heart and soul splinter off.

I miss her so much I wonder how will I survive the years to come without her.  But I will.  She’s gone but she’ll never be forgotten.  She lives on through my dad,  my sister and myself, her 6 grandsons,  her great grandaughter and great grandson and the lifes that will follow.

And my life continues. I will remember my mum with the good, the bad and the ugly memories.  I will concentrate on the life she lived not the slow agonising time of her illness, or how she looked in the last 12 hours of her life.  I will think of the first time she became a gran, and the joy my first born son brought to her and my dad.  How happy she was with each new grandson that came along.  And how joyous she was when the first little girl, her great grandaughter came along.

There are many memories to cherish and remember.  Her death was the cumulation of the years lived before.  Her passing is but that one second between life and death.  Being here and then gone.  And thats not a memory worth dwelling on.

RIP Ma xx


Posted in cancer, Grief, hurt, love, mother, Uncategorized

I’m Scared

5 days.  That’s all.  5 days since my mum passed away.  5 days since the bottom fell off of my world.

I look at myself in the mirror and there’s no trace of what has just happened.  I look like me.  But inside, I’m in freefall, my heart palpitates wildly.  It thuds so hard I don’t know why no one hears it.  My mind is screaming, “I can’t do this, come back Mum, come back,”  and then, it just screams, and screams,and screams.  My mind howls for the anguish my soul is in.  I want to run outside and scream and scream till theres nothing left.  I want to  curl up and cry, but I’m scared to.  I’m scared I’ll never stop.  That the tears won’t stop.  My hearts in agony, I’m physically hurting.  I wonder if it’ll ever stop.

I want to be 2 years old, and throw myself on the floor and have a tantrum. Will I ever sleep a full night, will my appetite come back.  or will I just continue to function while inside I feel like I’m slowly dying.

I’m confused, I can’t finish a thought, I go to do something and don’t know what.  I’m lost.

And I’m still scared.  I’m still too scared to cry.  I’m too scared to let the tears come,in case I can’t stop them.  And I can see the concern on my partners face.  He knows what a strong person I am.  That for the 7 months my mum went from being sick, to being told it was cancer and that she’d be lucky to make Christmas, I’ve been covering my emotions to stay strong for them.  To being their support through it all.  I’ve reined my feelings in, kept them in check.

And now,  now I’m scared.  I have to let go, to release them.  I know what I need to do, but still, I’m scared

I love you Ma  xx


Posted in mother, Uncategorized

My Beautiful Mum




Yesterday morning I received a phone call from my dad, my mums doctor had given her 2-3 days to live and to see if I could come down immediately.  I got the first available flight and was at my dads side 7 hours later.  We drove from the airport directly to the Hospice.  It had been 3 months seen I’d seen my mum and I thought she had looked bad then.

Nothing could prepare me for what I saw yesterday.  How someone could still be breathing and look that frail I don’t know.  She was down to 43 kgs and a shadow of herself.  Her eyes were open but she saw nothing.  This woman lying in the bed was no longer my mum.  When I looked into her eyes she was already gone, her body hadn’t caught up with her.

Looking into her eyes, her face melted away and all I could see was the mum from my childhood.  The mum who was my safe place, my rock.  The mum I thought would live forever.  I remembered the silly teenage fights, and even the adult squabbles we had.  The mum I love with a passion that it hurts.

I stayed there for a while.  staring into those eyes that always had love for me.  And I talked.  Even though she didnt know I was there, I talked.  I told her how much I loved her, that my dad would be fine, that I was so glad she’d been my mum, that things would be okay, and that she could leave.  That we’d miss her so much and if we could we could we’d keep her here forever.  Even though it would hurt, she could go.

This morning we got a call from the Hospice, my mum had died.  Our world had finally changed.  My dad and I held one another and cried together.  My dad,  who was always a big gentlemen, felt like a child in my arms as he cried over the loss of his wife of 53 years.

A little later we drove to the Hospice where we were spent some time with my mum before the funeral parlour people arrived to collect her.  A chance to hold her one last time, to say goodbye for the last time.  Then we went home.

Now for the phone calls.  Now to phone the rest of the family and tell them of our shared loss.  To phone my sister, my sons, my nephews, close family friends.  Telling them all, and listening to their grief, their crying, their loss.

I’m happy my mums suffering is over.  That the cancer that had ended up attacking other organs in her body would no longer make her feel like she was being torn apart.  And I’m happy for my dad.  That he know longer has to watch the woman he loved his entire life going through all the agony and pain that she had for the last 4 months of her life.

Now its time to mourn and grieve for her.  To remember the life she lived, not what she had become.  To go and celebrate that I knew this woman, and she was my mum, and even though she’s no longer her with us in person, she’ll live forever in our hearts.  and as time goes on we’ll laugh and cry and remember the woman we all loved.

Rest in peace my beautiful mum.

I love you






Posted in love, mother

I Wonder

index                                                                                                  My youngest son arrives from the UK next Saturday, and on the 14th December him and my 3rd son are heading to Cape Town to spend time with the grandparents.

So I was talking to my dad this morning and he’s saying my mum is declining, he’s lucky if she’ll take 15 mouthfuls of food a day.  And I wonder, is she only hanging on till she sees her grandsons?  Is that what’s keeping her going?  They haven’t seen my youngest since December 2013 and my 3rd since 2012.

And I wonder if I should fly down to my folks the day after the boys leave.  I worry about my dad being alone when she dies.  But at the same time there’s no saying how long she’ll live.

I wonder about how exactly my dad is dealing with this.  My sister and the grandchildren know she has cancer, they just don’t know how serious it is.  My dad and I are alike in that we can put a good face on things.  He’s spoken with me about his fears and that he’s hurting, yet I know that even with me he’ll be holding back.  I don’t know which will hurt more, my mum dying, or my dads grief.

And I wonder, how do other people deal with these feelings.  With what the outcome is going to be.  It doesn’t make it any easier that she’s of an age when natural death can be expected.  (She’s 75)

And, again, I wonder, will I ever stop crying when I think about losing her.







Posted in cancer, home, illness, love, mother

My Mum


So in May this year my mum started to get ill.  At first we thought it was IBS (Irritable bowel syndrome).  One night my dad went to his stamp club and got a phone call on the way there.  It was my mum, she told him she was in unbelievable pain (we’re a family that will be in terrible pain before we complain)  My dad shot home and had to take her to emergency.  She ended up on morphine as nothing else would dull the pain.  Meanwhile they discovered a mass in her stomach area.  Long story short, after numerous testing, she has colon cancer.

Fast forward.    She went for an operation to remove the mass.  It seemed to help.  She had almost no pain.  Alas it didn’t last long.  The biopsy showed that the cancer had spread to her liver and lungs.  In the last couple of months she has lost almost 30 kilograms (she was 77kg, now shes 47kg).  This is because she barely eats.  Shes in so much pain, that even the morphine barely helps.  All she does is sleep.

My heart is in pieces.  I can’t imagine a world without my mum.  Even though over the years we’ve had huge fights or gone months without speaking because we’re peeved with one another.  She’s still been my mum, and I’ve always loved her.  And as I write this I’m struggling to see through the tears that slide down my cheeks.

And I think, what will my dad do.  They’ve been together since 1962 and married since 1963.  53 years married to my mum.  I can already see what my mums pain does to my dad.  If my heart is in pieces how is my dads.

I’m grateful that with all the things that happened in the past between my mum and I, that I’ve made peace with her.  That everytime I fly down to see them, I go lie on the bed beside my mum and hold her while she sleeps.  This woman, who was so big to me, is now tiny and fragile.  I tell her I love her.  When I’m at home, my dad and I talk on the phone everyday and before we hang up he takes the phone through to my mum, holds it beside her ear. And even though she may be sleeping I tell her I love her, that she’s the greatest. And before we hang up I tell my dad I love him and I’m only a phone call away.

Then I go to my bedroom, lie on the bed and cry.

My heart is breaking.  Soon, my world will change and never be the same again.  I will lose one of the greatest loves of my life.   My Mum.


Posted in army, love

So Near Yet So Far

Two of my 4 sons moved to the United Kingdom to live and work.  One is in the architectural field (2nd son) and the other is in the British Army (4th son). 

Last night my youngest (4th) landed in the Mother-Continent, in Kenya to be exact, at the Army Base there.  And all I can think about is that he’s only half a continent away, roughly 2950 kms (1820 miles).  I know, what’s the big deal, well, he’s normally 2 continents away, roughly 9100 kms ( 5635 miles).  And that’s a big deal. 

I’ve seen him 3 times since February 2012.  Twice he came back to South Africa, and I went there in February this year for his passing out parade.  Now that was a BIG DEAL.  Talk about proud, I think (actually I know) that I bored everyone to tears talking about it and him.  Over and over and over, (you get the picture) again.  He was so smart and grown up and my little boy was gone.

There’s something about when the last child leaves home that’s harder to deal with than the others.  I suspect it’s because for a while it was just the 2 of us.  When he had been gone about 6 weeks I climbed into my wardrobe and screamed and cried for around 4 hours.  I thought my heart would never be the same.  It was a physical pain, and I could no longer keep it in and to myself, so when it broke it did it in magnificent style.  I worry that I’m over attached to him, as more 4 and a half years later, when I think about how far away he is, it still hurts like hell.  I feel a pull to return to the UK to be nearer to him and my 2nd son.  But I’ve 2 sons here as well, and a grandaughter, and I know if I moved there, I’d miss the 2 here.  But such is a mothers’ dilemma.

Anyhoo,  back to the original topic.  All that stands between myself and my youngest is a 6 hour flight, that’s all that separates us.   

And my heart skips with joy, and breaks with the pain from knowing he’s so near yet so far.