There are hundreds of quotes in the world that you hear about grandparents, how loving and caring they are, how they are always there for their grandchildren, how defending they can be. and I can say every caring quote I have read about grandparents makes a smile rise to my face.
My Gran was my most precious friend in the world, she was my port in a storm, my cuddle when I cried, those soft arms used to take me in when problems arose, and in her hold, I felt safe from any danger. She really was a huge inspiration to me and I cherish every moment we spent together.
The reason for this post is because 7 years ago today, she passed away, she fought a long and unneeded battle against cancer, and the bastard cancer won. She was diagnosed with Pancreatic Cancer in February 2006, at the age of 82, she wasn’t going to go through any recovery stages…because the cancer had taken hold. She had also spent years caring for my grandad who suffered from skin cancer, and she spent weeks in hospital watching him suffer, watching the doctors feed him chemo, watching his life fade away…and rightly so, she didn’t want that, she wanted to go in her own way.
She was a matriarch through and through And her attitude towards cancer was as strong as anything else..she wasn’t going to give up without a fight.
I remember clearly myself and my Mum looking after her as she refused to go to a hospice, she refused to be looked after by others. She wanted the people around her she loved…and we cared for her because for years she had cared for us. one day a visiting nurse told us it was impossible for us to look after her, she needed her last few days to be in a hospice. Myself and my mum were exhausted, we spent every waking hour making sure she was as comfortable as possible. To our heartbreak the nurse arranged her to go in the hospice on the 5th March 2007, we knew if my Gran was any stronger she would have refused, but she couldn’t.
The afternoon of the 4th March, my Gran let go..we knew she wasn’t happy to go in a hospice the next day, and her stubbornness held until the end And I am happy she let go when she did. She did her way until the end. Not before asking to see all her grandchildren. her last words were ‘I need to know your all safe and happy, because David’s here.’ David was my granddad, who passed away in 1997. He had come to collect her and hold her hand to heaven but she wasn’t leaving us until she knew her daughter, son in law and grandchildren were OK with her departure. We told her we were safe, we told her we loved her and we held her hand whilst her soul raised from her empty shell.
I sat with my Gran for quite some time after she passed away, I held her hand and I kissed her forehead. I told her secrets I had never told anyone else. I knew she was no longer with us but it felt comforting. The entertainment industry has made death a scary and disgusting thing..however its not when your sat with your best friend who has finally given up on a fight they knew they couldnt win, but they weren’t going without a fight. It’s a moment of sadness, a moment of happiness, a moment of realisation. Just because my gran was no longer breathing, didn’t mean her soul wasn’t everywhere around us.
it never gets any easier, I miss her more everyday, I think about her everyday. But I know, if I need her I just need to think about her and she’s there.
She was the most important person to me in the world, I loved her more than anyone in the world and she really was the person who inspired me to inspire others. The 17 years I had with her were the most precious in the world and I wouldn’t change them for anything…even the days she would be pulling her hair out trying to explain a simple math equation to me! (She would have given Carol Vordeman a run for her money!)
My Gran Barbara Annie Colebrooke was an angel on earth. She was the most beautiful person With a beautiful heart and this is why I am here today.