Since I last posted I have returned to university. I have settled in well, my department are very supportive, my course is difficult but its a means to an end and I think it will get more interesting as I progress. University has given me a sense of purpose i have lacked since my mum died, when my mum died I was left directionless. My role had to been to look after her and I had to adjust to not putting another person first. University has given me a routine and sense of belonging. It is a difficult course and I do struggle with the workload but ultimately I would rather be here doing this and get closer to my goal of studying medicine down the line.

It is very difficult to put into words the way I feel about my mum because I’m not sure how I do feel. Initially there was the intense devastation but life continued and I still had this huge pain and I found myself unable to deal with it head on. I don’t know if I am doing the right or wrong; university is distracting for instance, I don’t actually think I will ever get over it but in daily life there is something which numbs the pain a little by means of a diversion.

The pain and huge sense of loss remains. My mum was essentially the only family I had. How does one adjust to being without a family? I have no one to go home to at night, no one to make sure I actually do get home. Its a very odd thing. I have a good set of friends but ultimately they can’t change what has happened. If I talk about what happened to my mum I can get upset if I think about it too much as opposed to being matter of fact. It’s confusing. To say you miss someone is a strange thing. Normally it is a transient thing, you expect to be reunited at some point. How do you adjust to missing someone constantly when “missing someone” doesn’t quite convey the permanence of that loss? It can’t be reversed, there’s no place to visit, any questions will remain forever unanswered.

I was angry with my mum for a time, as I felt she had abandoned me even though I knew that she knew never wanted to die. I was angry with the situation I was left with and the people I was left to deal with as a consequence. There are a lot of people I could blame over what happened to my mum, by the cause of a chain of events- and to a degree myself, I questioned my relationship with my mum, hoping I was a good daughter to her, hoping she knew how loved she was and intense guilt over past arguments. But blame won’t bring her back or make me feel any less bereft.

Circumstances have changed in that I now do have my mum’s ashes which I intend to scatter with a friend in India. I hope there will be some semblance of closure but deep down I don’t think I have even begun to deal with the bereavement process in reality, merely on the surface. I am horrified by the process of cremation, I was horrified to be given the bag which contained my mum’s ashes. I couldn’t cope with having them at home. It made it all real. I hope I find the strength to scatter them. The ashes do not feel as though they are my mother, it is not like I have my mother. After the conflict over me possessing my mother’s ashes, I thought I would feel something. But ultimately her body wasn’t her.I had put myself in such a mindset to deal with the possible reality of not scattering her ashes that I don’t know how to deal with the fact that it is actually going to happen.