Yesterday would’ve been Poppa M’s birthday, last year we marked the occasion as it was the first one since he passed. Nothing too special, we just had his favourite curry for dinner and my mum came round to join us. We chatted about him and had a laugh, to be honest as the first of all the firsts-it wasn’t too bad, I didn’t get as upset as anticipated, yes I missed of course I did, I always do, but I was able to handle it better than I thought.

This year we did…nothing. That’s right nothing. It was a usual day and we all went about our business as usual. My dad was cremated and we’ve yet to scatter his ashes at his favourite Cornish beach (a place we often frequented for family holidays-so much so that my Uncle relocated there!). Therefore we don’t have a grave or anything significant to go and visit, which is fine, I don’t need that, I have him in my heart and head to visit whenever and wherever I want. That said, it means that days like his birthday can go on as normal without a trip to a cemetery etc.

So we did nothing, sounds like we don’t care anymore or that it doesn’t bother us anymore. But it does. It still hurts all the time that he’s not here, it always will and until you’ve lost a parent, you won’t get that. Sorry but you’ll try and say your grandparents were as close and blah blah blah but believe me, my Granny was as close but this is different and harder. Much harder. But life goes on. It has to. That’s why we didn’t do anything significant to mark the occasion this year, because we can’t, we can’t pull out the stops each year and special occasion of my Dad’s to mourn his loss, it’s too much for us and for anyone else. There comes a point where you have to accept that although you still miss them, life goes on. Additionally, society forces you to carry on, people are only tolerant for so long of your need to grieve and miss your lost loved ones. Yes, people are very understanding but at the same time the rat race that western society is caught up in often takes no prisoners and offers no mercy as people need everything to keep ticking over.

That doesn’t mean to say I didn’t acknowledge it, we all did. Just within our own conversations and thoughts. I wished him a “happy birthday, 63 today” in my thoughts and no doubt so did everyone else. I actually started writing this on his birthday but didn’t get to finish it, my thoughts weren’t quite there yet. My husband and I chatted briefly about him, but that soon had to stop as Baby gurgled and giggled wanting our playful attention. That’s what reminded me that life goes on, I have a baby girl to love and enjoy, she cannot wait while I go over the loss of Dad.

So I acknowledge his birthday in my thoughts, I miss him in my memories and take as much enjoyment as I can out of life going on, because it has to go on.

Happy birthday Poppa M, we might not have done something special, but we thought of you and miss you everyday.

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