January and into February 2022

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I knew January was going to be difficult this year from a mental point of view but to the level that was far beyond my expectations.

My Mum passed away in April 2018 at the age of 86 from vascular dementia her 90th birthday was on the 19th of January this year. Over the past 3 years I struggled as I miss her so much. So I felt that this year would be even a greater struggle.

I currently live in South Kerry following the sale of my house in North Cork. It’s a beautiful part of Ireland. My parents are both buried in Dublin. It’s about 360klms drive, just over 4 hours. My initial plan was to travel up on my Mums birthday and stay overnight. That way I could spread the journey over two days. But our little Pomeranian Benji had picked up a gastric virus on the 17th. Benji had a history of gastric problems but was on medication since 2020 for seizures, the last seizure was in September 2020 which almost killed him.

So on the 19th I set off for Dublin alone. It’s a long drive and my mind was constantly pushing aside the pain of grief. I arrived at the graveyard at 3pm. On the way I had called Anita a number of times to see how Benji was. In a crisis I become very calm and constructive, Anita is a lot more emotional. Benji was not improving and had stopped eating. This seriously increases the risk of seizures. I decided not to stay in Dublin.

Cremations - Dublin Cemeteries Trust

I can’t explain the grief I felt at the graveside, it was deep, deeper that I have ever experienced. My sister Susan met me there and to be honest it was uplifting as I’d not seen her since Covid commenced in 2020.

So I headed back to Kerry at 4:30pm. A mistake as it was getting dark and I had another 360klms to travel. I was tired but I eventually arrived back in Kerry at 8:30pm. Greeted by the Pomeranian who’s tail looked like it was waggling his body. He knew I was emotionally  distraught with grief from visiting the graves and cuddled up beside me. Animals are simply incredible and they have a way of calming us human’s The next day the little dog was getting weaker. By Friday he was back in with the vet. The vet decided that if he did not improve by Saturday then he would admit him to a veterinarian hospital.

We got home and to be fair he seemed fine, we got some food into him and he was drinking water. My own form had not improved I was still deeply moved after visiting the graves two days earlier. Close to midnight things took a turn for the worst. Benji started vomiting, and took a bad seizure. Within an hour he had multiple seizures one of which looked like a stroke. But we nursed him and calmed him. He fell asleep cuddled up beside us. 7 hours later he woke up and tried to stand up, but unfortunate the seizures from the previous night hit him again followed by a massive stroke rendering him completely incapacitated. We called the vet. The little dog had to be carried into the vets cradled  in my arms. The vet helped him pass, still in my arms and he died smiling at both of us. This triggered emotions that with already been in grief for my mum ripped through me.

BUT with all of these emotions spinning I was also in the mists of interviews. Yes interviews, two of them for quiet big jobs. One was a face to face and the other was on Zoom. I’ve never participated in a zoom interview but the interview was at international level. I buried my emotions and had a great meeting. This job could take months to achieve but the feedback from the potential employers was fantastic.

With all this going on the house purchase was causing issues, the vendor did not have their paperwork right and by the end of January it looked like it was not going to happen.

I don’t give up easily. I decided to give the house one last push. And it worked, on the 5th of February I managed to find by the power of Google the piece of missing paperwork. My lawyer confirmed my findings and I signed the contracts on the 7th, the vendor signed on the 10th and I am now the proud owner of this beautiful 3 bed bungalow. My lawyer confirmed that the deal was officially done at 11:30am on Friday 11th.

And a new chapter begins, actually a number of new chapters begin. Some of which I will share here but others which I can’t. Our stalkers have not backed off. No matter how many times I warn then they ignore it, as far as they are concerned they are doing nothing wrong. But I intend to show them the true meaning of Karma.

And suddenly it’s the 14th of February Valentine’s Day. This is a significant day for us.

Q&A: Will the upcoming Stardust fire inquests finally bring families  justice after 40 years? - Independent.ie

Original born in Artane my local nightclub was The Stardust. It was Friday 13th of Feb 1981, 41 years ago when I left the club early. I had just arrived home a few minutes after midnight 14th Feb when the fire started after 1:15am It took 48 innocent local young lives and left over 200 people scared for life.

The 14th Feb 2014 I was initially diagnosed with Stage 4 Hodgkins Lymphoma.

And it’s Anita’s birthday. The diagnosis from 2014 has left a dark shadow over her birthday. But we do manage to celebrate it.

February 14th 2022  Anita is 52… she herself survived a dangerous VIN cancer initially diagnosed in Feb 2020.

We are good a beating the shit out of Cancer.

I just want to dial back to Friday 11th. I mentioned that my lawyer called me at 11:30am to confirm that I legally owned the property. To the day & time (not the date) it was exactly to the minute that in 2014 I was diagnosed with Stage 4 Lymphoma, when my oncologist told me “you have cancer”

But 8 years later I’m still here, after beating Stage 4 Multiple Lymphoma twice, beating diabetes, hemiplegic migraines, Covid 19 and multiple pneumonia attacks. Along with been terminally diagnosed 3 times.  All going well in 5 weeks I should reach 4 1/2 years in remission. Never give up , Never stay down,  Never allow negativity into you life.

The hardest battle I’ve had in my life is grief. I struggle with it mentally. I’ve lost some great people in my life, friends, combatants, parents, A great friend in Anita’s Dad Barry in 2012, my Mum in 2018. And in between them I lost uncles & aunts. Many of the great people I’ve lost died in my arms , it is heartbreaking and soul destroying. As a person who loves animals watching the life fade from our little Benji nearly push me over the edge. But please do not consider grief to be negativity it is a sign of strenght and viewed as empathy

Empathy is... | Empathy, Quotes, Feelings

It’s not all doom and gloom. We have the new house now. I asked Anita what she wanted for her birthday and she said a puppy. And yes I have bought her a Jack Russell puppy just 12 weeks old. He is still with the lady who allowed him to adopt us, we simply did not want the puppy in the house we rented and hope to be fully moved into the new house later this week. Now that I believe is another days blog about a dog. Anita will write that one and tell you his name. 

A Booster Shot of Empathy ~ Grief | theempathyqueen

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