An old lady dies of Multiple sclerosis in her late eighties. The funeral has an attendance of about forty people. The eldest daughter sits with her immediate family at the other side of the pub at the after party, as she is too disgusted to speak to most of her relatives who have not seen the lady in years and have attended the funeral as a formality.
A man in his late twenties receives a phone call from his father, who he has not spoken to in years after an argument. The father reveals he has terminal cancer and has about six months to live. They cannot remember what the argument was about.
A son of an elderly mother only contacts her when he is in need of anything or only when it is a special occasion such as Christmas.
‘Only tragedy allows the release of love and grief, never normally seen’ – Kate Bush, All the Love, The Dreaming (1982)
Kate Bush really made an astute observation in the above lyric. The more I think about those words, the more I realise that it is entirely common for friends, family, relatives just drift away in time, and not see each other for years, or at least interact with them in a way that involves love.
The above three scenarios are all things I have observed from a close outer perspective and I have seen the anguish and regret that has been involved in all of them. It has taught me such a strong lesson to not let tragedy dictate the love you should express for those around you, because when tragedy strikes, it is almost always too late.
I am a graduate twenty-something with the blessing of still having a lot of my close but elder relatives around. As I have moved closer to my family, I am making sure that I spend time with all of them as best as I can.
I will re-iterate something, someone said to me with the most urgent conviction…it truly has stayed with me since.