How are you feeling?
How do I feel?
No. Not fine at all.
I feel so many things and then feel nothing, just numbness.
I feel like my hearts in a vice right now, being tightened so much that the pressure in my head feels like its going to explode and its making me miserable.
Nana died a few weeks ago and all I keep thinking is how alone, how scared and how disappointed she must have felt in the run up to her leaving us forever.
I’m so angry with myself that the last time I saw her I left 15 minutes before visiting hours ended, I remember I had to get back from the city in time to collect the kids from school and I cried my eyes out the whole car ride home.
So many things I should have done, could have done… but I just didn’t. As always I was just too busy, too stressed, too tired. And now it feels like I just didn’t care enough and it’s all too late.
I’m worried that I’m forgetting everything about Nana already. I’ve been looking through her photo albums, her boxes of treasures hidden in her wardrobe and I’m discovering someone completely new. But its not the Nana I remember, the one I’m scared is fading way from memory already.
I’ve heard people say they think about their loved ones every day and always thought it was just a figure of speech. But in all honesty I really have thought about Nana in one way or another every day since her passing. Whether it be something of hers I see, a smell, a distant memory or just being so angry about something or nothing and remembering that it was always Nana I’d go to when I needed to vent.
We were eachother’s outlet, bitching buddies for lack of better words.
I’m angry that it was so difficult to speak to her when visiting hours were taken away because of the Covid outbreak. She’d been in hospital for almost 3 weeks already before the lockdown started and once that hit we never got to see her again.
I remember she was convinced that the nurses were ‘programming’ her tubes so they wouldn’t allow any food to go into her stomach and she was telling me how no one would feed her. At this point I truly felt that it would be a matter of days, maybe even hours before she slipped away and I prayed it would be whilst she was in a relaxed, peaceful sleep.
I would have felt so much more relieved it this was how things happened. I would have been heartbroken but would have known that this last hour I had spent holding hands, brushing her hair and sharing smiles together would have been a simple but a wonderful one.
But things didn’t go like this, instead Nana was in hospital a few weeks more, without any visitors and without understanding why things were so quiet and being confused about what was happening. I know the nurses had explained the situation so she may have understood things better than I imagine but deep down I still believe she thought we didn’t care… and I just feel so guilty for this.
If only I’d learnt more Portuguese by now, I could have done so much more to stay in touch with her before the end. If I was still in the UK I’d have spent hours on the phone, email, anything I could think of just to get through, even if it was only to hear her breathing and for her to hear me wittering on about random rubbish, just so she knew we were still thinking of her and that we cared. But that’s not how it went.
I get so angry that because of the lockdown we haven’t even been able to have a funeral for her yet. That it took so long for her ashes to come back home to us. I understand shes gone, but in my heart I feel an ache so big at the thought of her ashes being sat on a shelf in a meaningless dark room when for weeks her urn could have been back at home.
Because circumstances are what they are right now it just feels like Nana’s passing is so nonchalant. How can someone who meant so much and had done so much with their life have what feels like such an impersonal and uncaring end? I know when we do get to say goodbye properly, together as a family, that things will be better but right now Nana’s passing feels so insignificant and its killing me.