In my diary entry from 26th December 1981 ( I was 12 then), I’ve written ‘This evening on TV I watched, for the first time on TV, Gone with the Wind. The first part was really good and the next part (as it was approximately 4hrs long ) is on the 27/12/1981′. I went on to record that I watched the second part and ‘it ended up very sad’.
Anyone who has ever watched the film or read the book may remember Scarlett O’Hara’s famous words ‘”Tara. Home. I’ll go home, and I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day”. Well, my mum loved the film and it was a phrase that she would use often, particularly when she’d had a bad day. Or if I was feeling low or lonely, she’d say to me ‘ Paula, tomorrow is another day, you never know what tomorrow might bring’. And often, she was right as she was with most things.
As some of you may already know from some recent Instagram posts, my mum sadly passed away on the 18th February after a short but determined battle with an illness in hospital. It was in fact only two days before she died that doctors were able to determine what was wrong with mum. It turned out she had a rare condition called HLH which is a severe and often fatal systemic inflammatory syndrome affecting the immune system.
Being an only child, I had an incredibly close bond with my mum whom I loved beyond words and it has naturally come as a huge shock to me and my dad. I do take some comfort from the fact that she did not suffer for too long and I am incredibly grateful that we were allowed to spend so much time with her in her final days. The NHS staff were so dedicated in their care for mum and so compassionate towards dad and I and I cannot thank them enough for their efforts, given the year they have already been through.
Above all, I draw huge inspiration from the courage, dignity, kindness, love, forgiveness and personal resilience that my mum exhibited throughout her whole life. She had an irrepressible and infectious zest for life which will be with me always. And while I miss her hugely, her passing has brought my own life into sharper focus and put fire in my belly to make the most of it. Before she left us, my mum told me to have a good life and I will, in time, do exactly that. Because tomorrow is another day and I want to be present for it and in it.
Thank you so much for all your kind messages of support. It has meant a lot to me. I’m looking forward to resuming ‘normal’ blog posts and reconnecting with you all again soon. In the meantime, stay safe and have a lovely weekend.