This is the last photo that was taken of our Dad who passed away on 13 January - shortly after I published my last blog post.
He was 91 years old and had been diagnosed with Mesothelioma late last year so his death wasn't unexpected. However, as much as my sister and I thought we were prepared, it was still upsetting when the end came.
The last 18 months or so of his life had been difficult for Dad. He looked after our step-mum - who has dementia - without any help until he was 90. He sorted out the finances, planned the shopping, sorted the housework, did all the cooking himself (and proper dinners too) and when Cynthia couldn't manage to even wash the dishes without getting confused, he did that too. After a fall in July 2017 his mobility was affected and he made the decision to move into a care home where he would have more help to look after Cynthia. In November last year, they celebrated their 50th Wedding Anniversary with a little party at the care home.
In the last few weeks of his life, Dad's arthritis had become crippling to the extent that he could no longer even manage to feed himself, move in his chair or turn over in bed without assistance. He developed pressure ulcers and a chronic cough. He slept more and more, and ate less and less. His death, I'm sure was a release for him, and that makes the loss easier to bear. He was a good Dad and we loved him.,
It's a fact of life that the older we get, the more likely we are to have to deal with bereavement. We all deal with it in different ways - there's no right or wrong way to grieve and no time limit on the grieving process. Apart from immediately after Dad's death, and during and after the cremation, I haven't cried very much and sometimes feel guilty because of this. Will it hit me in the weeks or months to come? Who knows? I will write more about dealing with and preparing for dying in a future blog post. In the meantime, please feel free to add you own experiences by commenting below.
I'm Krystina (Tina) Spicer, NLP Practitioner, Life Coach, Stress Management and Resilience Trainer and Hypnotherapist and want to use my skills to help other people deal with the challenges of ageing and live full, productive and happier lives.