Cheating an Imagined Loss

by Ian

in Conversation, Ian, Motivation

“I know I felt sad because of feeling for the loss of Mum”

Recently my Dad has been listening to the five hours of his brother Bill’s Life Story.  Stories that include his earliest memories and before.  Bill is 12 years older than my Dad.  He has the memories of Dad’s childhood, the years that he has forgotten and the years before he was born.  I know Dad was quietly looking forward to listening to these stories from when I first mentioned that I was going to record his brother.  The look of amusement and excitement when he first started listening is one of the greatest pleasures that I have had in producing these projects.  I could see it on his face as he smirked at Bill recounting times long ago.

My Dad Listening to Brother Bill's Life Story

I was having dinner with Dad yesterday and he mentioned that the stories of his Mother dying cut him to the quick.  He was visible upset as he remembered the passing of his mother all those years ago due to the mention of his older brother talking of what she went through, bringing back all those long ago memories from 55 years ago.  I’ve only just realised that even after all these years it’s still sometimes hard for him.

While listening to Bill, Dad mentioned that it felt to him as though he was listening to a voice from the past, of someone who had passed away.  He said that it was as if Bill had already died and he was listening to these recording afterwards.  Funny how the mind works.  He knows that it was the trick of his mind associating the loss of his Mum and reflecting on that had caused him to place Bill in a similar situation.

Fortunately Bill is healthy and still kicking on with his life at nearly 88 and Dad was able to give “Billy” a call to have a chat.  Something that he wouldn’t have been able to do if the situation was as how it had felt.

I can only imagine the joy of feeling the grief (although delusional), then the joy of being able to cheat death and still call Bill up and have that chat.  Despite the weird feeling and the reminders of loss of his parents and siblings, Dad had a certain joy and appreciation in still being able to talk with his big brother.  Maybe we have to feel some of the uncomfortable things of life in order to have a stronger appreciation for what we have and the joys that surround us.

What do you think?

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