today my thoughts are far from our troubles and firmly with good friends who have had an unimaginably difficult summer.
Right at the beginning of the holidays, their gorgeous Granddaughter lost her life in a road accident, which also left her Mum very poorly and her brother injured. At one point the family were in hospitals across two counties while medical staff fought to save them.
Today, some five weeks on, the family will say goodbye to the little girl, so full of life, who was the centre of their world. Siblings are bereft, Mum is in a wheelchair and Dad doing his best to hold it all together. This breaks my heart.
When you become a parent the world changes forever. Suddenly so many fears you had no idea existed are at the front of your mind. Keeping them safe, helping them to grow, to develop, to come to adulthood, becomes a priority. Later once they are grown they begin to follow your journey, with children of their own, then, as a Grandparent the level of anxiety trebles. All the same hopes and dreams you had for your babies become extra important for the little people they have created.
So, it is with heavy heart I put myself in my friends position. Watching her baby boy, saying goodbye to his baby girl is a pain I cannot envision. It actually takes my breath away.
Throughout this terrible time my friends have worked together to make things as good as they can be. They are strong for the family, although I am sure at times they are falling apart in private. I feel unable to do anything to help, but send love and warm thoughts, every day, and especially today.
You see it really is true that nothing material matters at all. In the end it will always be love, and those we care about that are the only things that we should focus on. In the end it is people not places, houses, or possessions that count for everything.
After today, the world will carry on for this family. School will reopen, Mum will continue to recover and gradually things will go back to as they were. Except they will truly never be the same again. It is my hope that they find their way back and that one day they will smile again.
Another good friend of mine lost a child some ten years ago. She says that she never wanted to be defined by this one terrible accident. She has, through love and time found a kind of peace. I hope beyond hope that my friends and their family can do the same.
It is a cliche that we all should live for today, but sometimes the world reminds us just how tenuous life is, and I for one am going to hold onto that and try my best to use it wisely.