I’ve been too introspective of late, though I hope it hasn’t shown too much. But there have been too many illnesses and deaths and funerals and too much awful news and it has to have an effect. In the night, when I couldn’t sleep, I unexpectedly recalled the time when my mother was in hospital, six months before her death, when we were – she, my sister and I – together given the news of her fatal illness.
Shocked as she was, she rather appreciated the drama, in her feisty way. I think I’ve mentioned, in the past, at least one anecdote about that and, since I’m fast reaching my anecdotage (whom have I to thank for that? Gilbert Harding comes to mind, but I may be wrong – it was he who described himself, rather sadly, as a “telly-phoney” … anyway, I digress) then I’m bound to tell it again, but what I was remembering was how completely I fell apart.
I suspect I was rather scary, actually. I insisted on driving to and from the hospital and cried and talked all the way home every day and surely I can’t have been safe. Weeza or Wink were with me mostly, I think. I’ve no idea what I said. I do remember, several days on, saying to Weeza that no one – none of the men of the family – had said a word to comfort me. She said that they didn’t know what to do, I was normally so self-contained and strong that they were nonplussed. I was astonished, frankly. I thought I just didn’t like to bother people. Anyway, she evidently had a word because later Ro and Al came and hugged me.
I remember, though, thinking as I went through immense grief, that I wouldn’t have to feel it so intensely again. Took a few years to get over, though.
I don’t know whether to write about this or not. I’ve never felt able to before and I’m not sure it would serve any purpose now. Probably better not. Except for the anecdotes, because they’re quite funny. But it’s a fact that I’ve blanked or put in a box an awful lot of emotion ever since, and only acknowledge happiness. It’s better that way.