The last time I blogged was September 17. The last time I posted on Instagram was September 18. While I was never prolific, 14 weeks is a significant gap, especially as I was almost getting into the swing of things. But after years of making pulmonary fibrosis look like a head cold, my dad suddenly worsened.
We’d had a content, peaceful few months together. We already knew things would never be the same, as our 20-year-old cat was clearly basking in her last summer. Then in the middle of September, dad started to decline. I had to call three ambulances in ten days, and eventually he spent several weeks in hospital before finally leaving us in October.
Obviously this isn’t a very festive post, but today, Boxing Day, was his birthday, and I couldn’t just return to blogging in the New Year without explaining my absence or mentioning that my entire life had changed forever.
I didn’t exactly have a typical relationship with my dad. He was a very popular and funny man – in his final decade he had become something of a local legend/eccentric. But underneath the jokes and the outgoing persona he hid trauma, and grave mental and physical illness.
He was very brave, incredibly tough, and his faith only got stronger.
Having witnessed his determination, held his hand at the end, and barely survived a funeral, I finally think I might want to write again.
I’m very hopeful that I’ll be back in 2019 with my light-hearted reviews. I always did find comfort in books and movies; so far this holiday I’ve watched his favourite movie (Elf) twice.
Perhaps I will have more time and energy and will belatedly gain a new efficiency. (This post alone is a slight leap of faith – far more personal than usual.)
So here’s to 2019. xx