So I don’t know if there’s anyone out there who still reads my blog to see what’s happening with me. I think most people who actually know me get their news some other way. On the other hand, here’s my blog and I suppose I could write in it.
I have to tell my blog that it turned out that my parents both died this summer. There’s been so much to do that I’m not sure I’ve started to process it yet, really; or maybe it’s been so long coming that the final losing is the gentlest of blows.
I’m tired of explaining all the details so I’m not going to go into them here. My dad died at the end of July and my mum about three weeks later. Her Alzheimer’s was sufficiently advanced that it didn’t seem she still knew who he was or that he’d gone, but on some level she must have done; she got an infection of the type she’d usually have bounced back from, but this time she just didn’t. Dad was sick for three weeks so I had time to process it as it was happening, but when Mum went too, that was a shock. I had very little time between discovering that she wasn’t going to recover and her actual death: about six hours.
We haven’t gone back yet, for various reasons. We’re travelling next week. The kids will miss the second week of school, when hopefully nothing much exciting or new is happening. There’ll be a double memorial service in the church where I was baptized and married and everything in between, and lunch across the road afterwards.
I’ve been writing elsewhere, because you know that’s how I do things. I’ve been going through photos and posting albums online. I’ve been trying to get a sense of who they were when they weren’t just my parents, a sense of the whole of two lives that intersected and stuck together so fast that they left practically together. I have to try to write a eulogy, for one thing. But I also have to give them their due as their daughter, to mourn them and find their legacy and be their legacy and preserve it for their grandchildren. (We’ve been listening to Hamilton a lot. It’s always about the legacy.)
It’s not about me, it’s about them. But it’s not just about them, the couple, it’s about them, two full people. It’s hard to do that when they went so close together. I feel bad that I can’t mourn each of them individually.
But if they’d minded, they wouldn’t have done it this way, I tell myself. I don’t think they’ll mind too much. Ever practical and thoughtful, they were just saving me the trouble of going through it all twice separately.