Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Yesterday morning, just before 10am, a beautiful soul rejoined her beloved husband in heaven. My Nan, Esme McDiarmid, has been fighting for months, after being diagnosed with cancer that was pretty much everywhere through her body. She had radiation and a dose of chemotherapy. She was taking so many pills we thought she should rattle. As time went on she wasn't able to walk by herself, and in the last few days wasn't even able to get up out of bed. For most of those months she has been staying at my mum's place, just down the road from us, and was helped by her two daughters (my mum and aunty), and her youngest sister. Last week, knowing that the end was coming, she made the decision to go to palliative care.

Over the past few months she has been surrounded by people she loves - family from all over the country, literally, have travelled to spend valued time with her, and it's been lovely for us to be able to see her every day, and make the most of those few precious moments. On Monday afternoon, her pain became too much, and they doubled her morphine. My sister and I sat with her all monday night, but she wasn't really conscious ... sleeping, in obvious pain, and moaning quietly. It was so painful an experience for everyone there to see her like that, and it was heart-breaking to leave that night, knowing that it would probably be the last time we saw her.

As it turned out, it was. I got the call at work, and some awesome people stepped in to cover my classes so I could be with my family. I got to see her, lying there in her bed, the pain lines gone, and looking really peaceful, and as hard as that was, it was also kind of a relief, if that makes sense.

Telling the kids was the hardest, as we knew it would be. They were as prepared as they could be. They knew she wasn't well. They knew she wasn't going to get better. But the reality of a world without Nan hit them hard. Tayla, though, the little legend, was also a bit happy. "Now Pa isn't alone, him and Nan are together again." And that really sums it up for all of us, I think.

The funeral is on Friday, so I'm sitting here contemplating how to talk about this beautiful woman in a way that will do her justice. Love you Nan. Give Pa a kiss for us!


Billing family. said...

I am very sorry for your loss PT. It was lovely that you were able to spend so much time with your Nan. My condolences to you and your family.

Sam (Paperdoll)

Crafted Customisations said...

The way you express your thoughts and emotions is amazing. It really makes me feel like I am in your shoes, going through your experiences, when I read your blog. I'm sure you will come up with something wonderful to say at the funeral today. You seem to be very good with words! I totally understand the relief side of it. After seeing so much pain it's good to know that a loved one isn't suffering any more even though it's hard for a while to know that they are no longer physically there. It's wonderful how kids can say something so sweet and simple that can make you smile especially in such time of sadness. Keep the memories close to your heart :)

Shelee said...

That was written so beautifully. I'm glad to hear that the service was lovely and that it was a celebration of what was obviously a truly blessed life.
Hugs to you and your family darl.

Shelee xx

Julie said...

Thinking of you Missy PT.

Hugs to you and your family too.