That phone call came yesterday at 1.13pm and now she's gone and the rest of us are left to juggle feelings of relief, sadness, bewilderment, gratitude and loss - all in overwhelming proportions. The day before was her birthday in fact and for me it was a sad, tearful day - so tearful that on Tuesday I felt the kind of dehydrated that is usually mistaken for a hangover. Too many tears and too much grief, if such a thing as grief can ever be quantified.
I've had a lot of time to think about this moment. In the last 18 months I've said goodbye to her three times thinking it would be the last and now I struggle to try and contain the panic because I can't remember the details of our last conversation. Because I didn't know it would be our last.
Today has been a quiet day. I feel tired and sad but philosophical. I've never really understood what rest in peace means, not really, or perhaps I've never given it a lot of thought, but when I think about my nan and the incredibly strong, dignified, practical, loyal, good woman that she was, amazing in so many ways as a person in her own right as well as a grandmother, well fits of tears seem ill-placed and even a bit selfish. I can close my eyes and hear her voice and I know exactly what she'd say and more than anything I want her to be at peace. But fuck I miss her. And of all the things I inherited from her, emotional restraint doesn't seem readily apparent in the mix. So there will be tears. But there will also be love, reflection, respect and quiet admiration, and tomorrow, on my birthday, some champagne perhaps and a toast. To an amazing woman who I had the privilege to call my Nan.