Mum

 

533257_354654481282249_1155705509_nIt’s four o’clock in the afternoon and I should be phoning Mum, but this will be a phone call I will never make again as she died yesterday.

Those of you who have read her memoir will know what a remarkable woman she was. Dancing with my brother COVERHaving lived through WW2, when she lost not only her beloved father, but her country and what she had thought was her future, she came to a new country and began again, bringing up a family and when my brother was settled in school  starting a new career. Her courage and resilience meant that she coped amazingly well with self-isolation and lockdown in the last few months of her life.

What she found most difficult, as we all did, was not being able to see any of her family. We kept in touch daily, ringing her at our agreed times right up to the day she died. She hadn’t been well for a few days and if things had been as they used to be one of us would have come to look after her. As it was she wasn’t alone at the end as two of the wonderful carers in her sheltered accommodation was with her.

At ninety-eight death is not unexpected. My guess is that Mum was finding life harder and harder and was not sorry to go. She always said she did not want to live until she was a hundred. What is hard for us is that we can’t be there physically for each other. Now is a time for tears and hugs, sharing of memories and laughter. There should have been a big funeral, followed by a wake/party/celebration for all her family and her friends.

Mum was a great lady with a keen intelligence that never deserted her. She was caring and compassionate and always thinking of others first. She could also be a “stubborn little bugger” as her granddaughter Lucy would say. If she didn’t want to do something, she wouldn’t−especially if you thought it was good for her.

She loved her bingo, she introduced me to the game. She had a way with plants both indoor and out and up until her mid 90s was driving her “old” ladies to Mass on Sundays.

Mum adored her great-grandchildren and they her. When Lucy brought Ollie to visit, he would hitch a lift on her pusher on the way back to the exit. You would have thought it might be the other way round, but that wasn’t Mum.

Ollie on the trolly 2

I remember her wheeling him round the food department in M&S on what proved to be our last outing and it’s those moments that we will be sharing in the hopefully not so distant future when we finally hold that party.

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