Monday 12 March 2012

The Little Things

I would never have imagined there would come a day when I compared my Grandad to Bill Nighy riding a motorcycle in India with Judi Dench riding pillion but the way he rose his arm and saluted his greeting to his fellow castmates was so so so similar to the way my Grandfather would wave us goodbye after a visit.  It is these little things that catch your breath and bring cherished memories back to you, spark a tear in the corner of an eye and a truly wistful longing that you might see them one more time.

I have always had a difficult time reconciling myself to the inevitable.  I know we have to die.  It will happen and it's coming whether we want it to or not but I have never been able to embrace the concept.  I was petrified of death as a tween, the mere thought of it would have been running through the corridors of my mind, slamming doors and refusing to touch the subject matter.  I don't know whether it is because of the tragedy that hit my small family in my early years.  I have no memory of it.  In fact my earliest coherent memories are from secondary school - there isn't much before that at all, just vanishing glimpses of possible places, faces and half remembered occurrences.  My brothers died when I was very small, my parents lived through extreme grief in their own different, separate ways and I think that grief shrouded my childhood and made me fear death.

Grief is hard.  It makes you feel selfish because you have to ask whether you are crying for yourself or for the person who is now gone.  They don't know that your are crying - whether they are still capable of conscious thought is a riddle we will probably never know but I like to think that wherever they are, there is no pain, no darkness, no hurt.  I am not a religious grasshopper but I have faith that there is something more than nothing when the final curtain falls.  It is always the little things that remind us.

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