As the door on 2014 softly closes, I think of you once more. It's three years since you passed away, yet I still remember you every day. I hear your voice in my head. I ask you questions. I miss so much: that feeling of safety and security that only a parent can give, your advice, your help, your presence.
But now you're gone to some place where I cannot find you. There is no grave for me to visit or lay flowers. Your ashes were scattered from the summit of a Scottish mountain, according to your wishes. So all that was left of you was borne away by the breeze to who knows where.
If Heaven exists, I will find you there, but not with the cherubs on their fluffy white clouds. No, your heaven will be in the wild places where the peaceful quiet is only broken by the rustling of heather and the cry of a curlew. Walking hand in hand with my Mum up on roof of the world, closer to the sun, where the wind is fresh and free.
In this fallow time before New Year, I'm also thinking of all those friends who were stricken with the new raw wounds of grief this Christmas, while I just have old scars, though they will never fully heal.
Because life will never be the same again, but it will go on, and day by day it will get easier. And those moments that catch you with overwhelming longing and pain? Clasp them close to you, they are the legacy of the love that you felt. Better that you feel, that way they are still with you.
May there be healing for us all in the New Year. Thinking of loved ones as the year dies will hopefully mean that in January we can look forward and plan to live and enjoy every minute of our lives, just as my Dad did.
You will always inspire me Dad, and I do know where you are: You're in my heart, as you always were.
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