I’ve started reading Joan Didion’s The Year of Magical Thinking. It’s about her husband’s sudden death in their apartment while their adult daughter was ill and unconscious in hospital. It’s so well written, but man, it’s bringing the flashbacks to my dad’s death.
I have one regret about the last days of my father’s life; that I didn’t make many notes. If you are ever at the bedside of someone who is dying, make those notes, take those photos, capture those brief exchanges on video. because when death finally comes, your memory will be overwhelmed with graphic replays of the last breath and the pain of finality. The memories of the joys and laughs had at the bedside become hazy in the days and weeks after. Years later, the intensely painful parts fade, but the details of the good bits don’t ever come back.
I’ve resumed my habit of going to Barkly Square for a daily shop. There are people still out and about in face masks, some people are still avidly social-distancing, but it’s certainly not the ghost town out there that it was a few weeks ago. I can see how the second wave of a pandemic could take hold. May 11 has been mentioned as a date when some restrictions will ease, but it feels like people are starting to take that into their own hands.