Seven days since a light passed out of this world.
Seven days since the woman who taught me to fight for the things I believe in left me. Left US.
Seven days ago, my grandmother left this world. She'd been ill for a long time - diabetes induced complications at the beautiful old age of 89 but the shock is no less. She's gone.
My grandmother was a driving force in my life. Those of you who have known me a long time know that my grandparents raised me from the age of about 10, when my parents split up.
My grandmother taught me about periods. She taught me about boys. She taught me how to cheat at cards (and get away with it with nothing more than brassing it out). She taught me how to bake (she was horrified at my disinterest in cooking "proper"). She taught me how to sew, how to budget, how to accept.
She was the most wonderfully un-prejudiced person. She taught me to LOVE.
She was stubborn, kind, feisty, wonderful and beyond a shade of doubt absolutely maddening. I loved her.
I've spent the past 7 days in an absolutely shell shocked disbelief. Even now, writing this, I'm torn between that burning sensation in my throat which means I'm going to cry and the inability to accept she's not with us any more. Nothing has struck me more than the absolute soul draining physical nature of grief. It's tiring. It leaves you shaking. It leaves you numb.
I've veered between hysterics (sorry about that call Amber) at finding letters she'd written to me when I was at university, to dull acceptance of this.....pain.
So. My friends. Here is a tribute to a wonderful woman. I'm not a religious person but please spare a thought for a life that was full, lived and loved. Spare a thought for the lives left behind, for the lives that will go on. Spare a thought for your own lives, your own families because nothing has hit me as much as the finality of life. We have it, then it's gone.
So what are we going to do with it?
As it's an apt time to be thinking of new starts, new lives, new things I'm asking myself whether I am HAPPY. What do I want to do with my life? What do I want to achieve? What would I do if I had to start all over again? What would I do if I knew I couldn't fail?
They're pertinent questions. What would YOU do if you knew you couldn't fail?