the blessings in the darkness.

This week, despite being the hardest period of my life, I have witnessed the strength and comfort within my family connections. With my grandfather’s funeral yesterday (rest in peace, Pappy), I was greeted by old faces from the small town, that my two beloved grandparents have come so accustomed to. Some of these faces were easy to put to a name. Others, I struggled with sticking a label to them. In the end, people from all over our friendship and relationship tree, gathered in the small city centre of Numurkah, to celebrate the wonderful life that was Raymond John McBlane.

As always, the service was heart-wrenching, and beyond sad, but I learnt things about my grandfather, that I hadn’t known beforehand. He played cricket with those that are now a household name, he had many adventures driving his taxi and kept a strong grip on a vital friendship with people that have become his lifelong pals.

For the past five nights, I have cried myself to sleep, singing Forever in Blue Jeans in my head until I slowly faded away into numbness. With that, I did not dream until last night, which turned out to be irrelevant visions – or so I assume. In any case, I slept last night, and came to some sort of peace that I haven’t been able to in the past week.

My grandmother, Nana as I know her to be, is the strongest person I know. She misses him, she tells us so, but she knows nothing can bring him back. She places his photo on the kitchen table, for all of us to see when we eat, and smiles though there is nothing to smile about. She knows that life has to go on, even though I can’t find a reason for myself to move forward.

Though he isn’t here, and never will be again, I know somewhere up there, he is watching like a hawk. I know he will titter when I swear, or laugh when I make silly mistakes – just like he always did. I know he will, because he is still there; out there somewhere, just a spirit now, waiting for us to join him.

Still thinking of you, Pappy.

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