Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Surviving the death of a partner

Picture Last night, I attended a memorial service arranged by the palliative care unit of Glengarry Hospital for patients who passed away at the facility in 2016, sixty eight in all including my dearest husband. In a moving ceremony the names of all the departed were read out and family and friends were invited to come forward and light candles in their loved one’s memory.

It is hard to believe that six months have passed since Cole left us. The mountain of administrative matters that needed my attention following his death, though wearisome and demanding was also a blessing, in that it kept me from dwelling on my grief. I also resolved to see more of family and friends. When you care for someone 24/7 something has to give, and in my case it was visits with my children who all live faraway.

At Northcliffe with Duncan

In Sydney with Emma

Spending time on the farm in Northcliffe with my son Duncan and his lovely wife Jaine, and in Sydney with my daughter, Emma and granddaughter, Molly helped stop me from brooding. But people need to mourn and I am so very grateful to the thoughtful staff at Glengarry for giving me the opportunity to remember Cole and how much I miss him. 

These last months haven't all been about finding diversions to fend off depression, I've cut back my teaching commitments to one day a week and put my writing career on hold. Not only did I abandon my new story, a sequel to "The Biocide Conspiracy", I gave up on promotion. I haven't blogged, or tweeted about my books. I've eschewed giveaways, competitions or special discounts on Facebook and all my posts are personal.  So why when I enjoy, nay "love" both the  creative and business roles of an author did I stop. Well, I came to the conclusion that immersing myself in the lives of imaginary characters wasn't as vital as getting my life on track. 

I spent the extra time getting fit, long walks in a nearby park and on the beach, gardening and uncluttering the house...threw out and shredded old documents and papers, some that I wish I hadn't rearranged the furniture and ornaments time and again and eschewed "the news" and current affairs in favour of my favourite BBC series on Foxtel.
But I discovered there's only so many times you can watch reruns of such classics as  "John Deed" , "Foyle's War" and "Inspector Morse" and lately I've felt that it's time to get back to work. So I wrote a "To Do" list that included writing a post to bring my friends up to date and to get back to the adventures of Mo and Beth in the aforementioned sequel to "The Biocide Conspiracy" that I've tentatively named "biocide.com".
A Favourite Walk
It was a very long list. At 10.15pm I'm still finishing the post. As for the novel, that will have to wait until tomorrow, right after my early morning ramble and a long, lazy breakfast listening to "Golden Oldies" on what was "our" and now is "my" favourite community radio station.