It will be 20 years this July. 20 years! It’s strange because sometimes it feels like it was yesterday yet, other days, it feels like a lifetime ago. I was 14, my sister 17 and, there we were, giving a kiss to his forehead and telling him we love him for the last time. He stopped breathing, it was surreal – it was all happening too fast. Then all this brown liquid came out of his mouth and onto his chest. It shocked us, we weren’t prepared for that – hell, we weren’t prepared for any of it! The nurses quickly ushered us out of the room and into another room with our Mum – a family room I’m guessing. Mum had stayed outside of his room out of respect, she wasn’t his wife anymore.
His wife had left the hospital. She had given the thumbs up for them to remove his oxygen and then left. She hadn’t told us, she said she was leaving to get something from home. She let our brother leave too.
She even tried to take that away from us, telling people it was her who was there when he died. Her and our cousin. Why? Why would anyone do that? Was she worried that people would judge her for leaving? Was she worried that people would realise she’d been with someone else? That they’d only stayed together because he was dying! Their marriage was over. But, of course, no one could know. For the kids’ sakes – not us three, those 3.
Well, we sorted his grave out last week. The last time we did that we got a shit storm of abuse thrown our way. It’s not our plot, we can’t touch it. 19 years later we’re saying “fuck you”. She didn’t do a damn thing to it, it was neglected to the point that someone had mentioned it to us. How embarrassing to be told “Not being funny but his grave is a mess, it really doesn’t look good”. So, we cleared it of all the crap, dug down, laid tarpaulin and then stones. We got a few bits to put on. It looks better, 100 times better. And we feel great!
He’s our dad so hurl as much abuse at us as you like you hateful bitch, we’ll just smile and raise a finger🖕