Feelings, in response to my Grandad’s decline towards death

I tried explaining to D tonight about how I feel about Dan (my Grandad) and his impending death.

Uneasy. On edge. Guilty. Lots of things about my mum (can of worms!).

The unease and being on edge comes with the unknown – when, where, how. D is away on a stag do from next Friday afternoon. Luckily only about an hour away, but still, there’s the whole ‘will he, won’t he’ be going because of what is going on here? Will something happen while he’s away? I don’t want to stop him going…he’s just got a permanent contract at his temporary place of work (so proud!) after being made redundant earlier this year, so deserves to have some fun.

The guilt comes from money and happiness. Not that money can buy happiness, but my substantial inheritance will get us on the housing ladder and (I hope) that will make me happy.

D asked me a few nights ago if I miss my Nan; I immediately replied “no”. That’s where the guilt lies too, but I don’t have memories of fun times, I have memories of dreading visiting – the sloppy kisses and asking if I wanted her to go to the toilet with me when I was waaaay old enough to go alone. My mum fell out with her parents for a good few years, and there was only written contact in that time. I found that much easier to deal with! Eventually, everyone started talking again and visits were back on, but things were awkward at times. They didn’t/don’t like my dad and he didn’t/doesn’t like them!

I don’t know if I’ll miss Dan. I’ve spent more time with him since Nan went, so I will notice that, but we’ve never had a close relationship. That’s not the type of man that he is. My mum doesn’t have the best relationship with him either. It’s all a bit messy. Although I’ve enjoyed spending time with him more than I did Nan. Although he repeats them, some of his stories are quite interesting and he does have a sense of humour. Ok, I will miss him. I’m glad I figured that one out!

When my Nan passed I did get really upset, especially when at her funeral when the curtains closed around the coffin; I broke down. I was younger then, it was the first death in our family and she had perked up a bit right before she went…I think that messed with my head a bit, made the death a shock even though I knew it was coming.

I can’t tell how I’ll feel at Dan’s funeral. I think I’ll deal with it better – a bit more mature and I know what to expect. I don’t know how mum will feel after all of it though. Relief? Closure? She didn’t have a good childhood and even now, some of the things that Dan says make her feel small and inadequate. I don’t know the ins and outs, but I don’t think they were supportive and loving to her. Mum really struggles with depression and I think a lot of it is linked to her parents. I know that right now (and for a long time), she is playing the part and being the dutiful daughter. She wants to feel that she has done her bit, done all that she could to help him, so that she has no regrets and nothing on her conscience when Dan has gone. I can completely understand that and applaud her for it.

I’m concerned about afterwards. I know that mum will take charge of contacting people and that what Dan wants for his funeral is in place, but there are more unknowns that are daunting. The funeral – talking to people who know me, but I don’t really know; and whether to take my (now) 13.5 month old, keep her completely away or have her around afterwards. Then there’s the will – how that is read etc and who has to be there, followed by all the stuff after that, which is the biggest thing for me. Sorting through the house, belongings, clothes, furniture. Selling the house. Sorting all the stocks and shares. Solicitors fees. Inheritance tax. Paying our debt off to my dad.

It’s all a bit of a whirlwind. It’s all a bit messy. One thing at a time…one thing at a time…

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