We are in a bubble.
The fish tank motor hums, kitchen clock tocks.
My father’s chest continues to rise and fall.
Hospice teams, carers, district nurses come and go. Leaving copious notes of their kindness, care and compassion.
He is quieter, more peaceful, pain relieved. Conversation has ceased.
We are less anxious with which pills to administer next or prescription to collect.
Not yet able to grieve. Tears come, flow and go.
We focus on what we can do. The sun shines, we pick spinach, wild garlic and rocket from his cloches.
We feed the goldfish, Fish and Chip plus the dog, Pip.
I remember the last time I walked down the garden with Dad, knowing it was. Appreciating every blade of grass we stepped on, every flower we looked at together and all the fridges and TVs collecting in his shed from a business he wasn’t able to let go off, but was winding down.
‘You know Jane, I once made Eric Morecambe laugh. Met him in a lift. Told him a joke. I always made people laugh, it was my gift.’
‘Dr, the Invisible Man is here to see you.’
‘Tell him I can’t see him right now.’
‘All the celebrities used to come into the shop in Putney, it was a wonderful community.’
My husband calls to ask if he should take the children into work tomorrow, my immediate thought, ‘Let’s ask Dad’ and then remember.
His car sits on the driveway, last moved over 2 months ago. In hospital, he was determined to get home, even saying that he wanted to drive. We looked at him and nodded, wishing for this too.
He said that when he got in he would eat, drink, walk, file his paperwork, sort out his orders, call customers.
The ambulance returned Dad to East Horsley, he hated all the bumps. He sat on a chair in the lounge, and soon after settled down into his new downstairs hospital bed.
Where he has remained.
In his home, where he insisted he wished to BE, with Barbara and extended family.
Not long now.
Pip wanders around lost. Knowing something is missing. Often laying under his bed.
Nobody feels like playing ball.
Rise and Fall.
Waiting. In a Bubble.
Keep playing Michael Andrews.
With love always.
Your daughter, Jane.
Because everyone has a story.