What a month.
The first part of this post is more of an announcement, I suppose.
It is with regret that I report the passing of my stepmother and father, Beryl and Andy Hughes. Beryl died on the 20th December 2012 and her husband Andy died two weeks later on 7th January 2013. Both died of complications due to cancer.
My dad Andy had kidney and lung cancer amongst other things, since the kidney cancer metasticised in to his bloodstream and glands. He was diagnosed three and a half years ago and was given only two years at that point, managing to survive a year and a half longer than he was told. He spent a lot of that time preparing his wife Beryl's environment for that eventuality, making sure that she would be safe and secure and that her life would be as easy as possible.
Then Beryl was diagnosed with lung and bone cancer last September. It was a much more aggressive cancer and gradually destroyed her lungs between September and December until her body finally succumbed and she was rushed to hospital where she sadly died.
Dad's life centred around Beryl, and he struggled to find a centre in his life. After her funeral on the 31st December, the last time I spoke to him was when I left his house to travel back down south on the 2nd January. He said that he was going to try his best to live long enough to walk my sister down the aisle at her wedding, but when we parted he shed some tears and he watched us drive off down the road - something he had never done before.
Dad took a chest infection just after that and began to struggle with his breathing. In the early hours of the 7th, after fighting for as long as he could, he suddenly collapsed and died in the arms of his daughter Linda.
Beryl's illness and passing was relatively sudden and all the more painful because of it. Dad's passing, although expected, was still earlier than it should have been in our opinions. I'm sad for us all that he won't be at Linda's wedding and I'm sad that neither of them are still with us.
Still, I keep thinking of them and as long as they're in our memories they're really still with us. I just regret that there will be no new memories.
Bye Mum. Bye Dad. Thanks for everything.
During all this, there's been all that fuss about Elite: Dangerous. Well, it made its target and WILL BE MADE! As will all the books based on it.
I'm thinking about doing something related to it myself now, and will hopefully release details of that soon.
The kids sent Anne and I on a holiday to Barry Island, Wales at the weekend there, and it was the best present ever. Despite the cold, snowy weather the trip was absolutely brilliant and was a big help in dealing with the emotional rollercoaster that the last month or so has been. Time to just stop and reflect and start to come to terms with the losses. And time to get to spend time with Anne and enjoy each other's company for the first time in AGES.
We'll be going back again. And again. And again. And if you get the chance to stay in the Barry Island Premier Inn, please do it. It's lovely.
Back to reality again now. At least for a couple of hours.