Monday, 4 January 2016

On letting go and the importance of family


The last week has been a grueling one - from the moment my MIL phoned just after 10 last Monday night to say that my FIL has lost his long battle with cancer, to stopping at home last night after a 14 hour trip from Port Elizabeth - filled with lots of traffic and an hour long delay at Kroonstad. We are all exhausted - two daylong trips with 3 days in between including a memorial service will do that to the best of us. I am just thankful that I have a week before work starts - not like Hunter who had to be at work this morning. I am also very proud of our little family and especially how well the kids handled all that was thrown at them during this period - and the rest of the holiday that was just a prelude to the conclusion.

But in all the sadness there is so much to be thankful for. Two years ago during the December holidays we received his stage 4 cancer diagnosis. In stead of the estimated 8 months we had two full years with him. We made the best of those two years - we visited whenever we could. We took photos, we made memories. We had good times together. We once again were made so aware of how important family is - even in the wider sense of the word.

My FIL was a wonderful man with a huge kind heart. He called me his daughter, not his daughter in law. He was the dad for me that I did not have as mine passed away when I was 7. We had a creative connection that I love and he always made me feel worthy of his love and a place in his family.  He was an inventive and creative grandfather that spent time doing things with his grandchildren. We will all miss him so very much - but we are all relieved that this last period of suffering is over for him. We feel assured and calm that he is completely healed now that he is with God.

In a sense this is a fresh new start for all of us -aptly it falls at the start of a calendar year. The last two years everything was coloured by cancer. Now we move on - we will honour him by living our lives to the full. Positively - every day.

19 comments:

  1. I am very sorry for your loss. I wish you love and strength during your time of grief x

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  2. Sorry, but glad the suffering has ended!
    Best for 2016!

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  3. Cat, so sorry for your family's loss. Be strong.

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  4. All the beeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeg hugs.

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  5. I am thankful that you had this special connection with your father in law. My deepest condolences to you and your family Rina.

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  6. Sorry for your loss and all the travelling but glad you can move on now.

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  7. Sorry for your family's loss. Hugs to all if you.

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  8. Oh Goodness, so sorry to hear about your FIL, so sad :-( He sounds like a wonderful man, accepting, loving, all those good things. I hope your little family are assured that he is now at peace.

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  9. I love how you described him. I never had a chance to meet him, but having met Hunter and his LOVELY mom, I can only imagine what a lovely man he must have been too.

    Prayers for you all - the grief will flare up in bouts for a lot of this first year still, so watch for the kids :)

    xxxx

    (I will see you in Jan hopefully if I don't cancel that client meeting again!)

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  10. Sorry for your loss! 2015 was definately a rollercoaster year, so hoping 2016 will be a bit calmer. :)
    Hope you have a good one!

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  11. I am so sorry for your loss xxx

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  12. What a beautiful post, and what a wondrous "rebirth" I hope this year will be for you all.
    You remain in my thoughts and prayers.

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  13. It is such a beautiful post. May 2016 be full of special "remember" moments, and when the sadness come, hope you as family are there to share the hugs. Thinking of you, xx

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  14. Oh Cat, what a lovely tribute and so special that you have had time to create these memories for your children with their grandfather. Thinking of you all as you face the sad days ahead XXX

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  15. I am so sorry for your loss. May the pleasant memories of him that you have shared here always stay with you.

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  16. I love your beautiful words...your love for your father in law shines through your words. I am sorry for your loss...but I know how awful lung cancer is and saw my own father suffer. Now he is dancing with the angels.

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