Dad's Farewell

I read lots of very moving posts on this forum and am particularly moved by people who have just lost a loved one to the dreadful disease that is PSP. I lost my own dad 2 years ago almost to the day and I wanted to take the opportunity to share something that gave me great comfort at the time and may bring comfort to others.

When we looked through Dad’s papers after his death we found that he had left my sister and I a letter each “to read after my death”. They read:

Dad’s Farewell

I thank GOD

For giving me two such lovely daughters

I am so proud of you both

Mourne me not but rejoice

For my suffering is over

And I am at rest

I’ve danced the streets of heaven

And kissed the faces of GOD and HIS HOLY MOTHER

HAPPINESS

He had written them on the computer (clever old bugger – must have taken him ages!) and the file was last saved on 11 December 2009, the day before he went into hospital. So he clearly knew his time had come and was happy to spend his final days in hospital. All of these things gave us great comfort.

Dad designed a lovely funeral. We followed his instructions to the letter and I have to admit that “Happiness” by Ken Dodd was actually a lovely song to finish with and had everyone smiling and laughing as Dad wanted. We had a great wake afterwards with lots of drinking and singing. Dad would have loved it!

I tell you all this because, if you have recently lost a loved one like I lost my dad 2 years ago, it may be of some comfort that they are no longer suffering.

With love and best wishes to you all

Antoinette

8 Replies

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  • Dear Antoinette,

    Thank you for sharing that with us. What a comfort it must be for you to have that final letter from your Dad.

    Love to you and your family

    Kathy x

  • Hi Antoinette

    How lovely to receive that from your dad and I can understand it gives you great comfort. I lost my dad last June and a year today is the date we were given the diagnosis that he had PSP after many years of falls etc, so today is a bit of a poignant day for me. It was lovely to read your dad's poem, he sounds like a great man.

    Take care

    Lesley x

  • Hi Lesley,

    Thank you for your lovely comments. Last weekend was the second anniversary of my dad's death so I know what you mean about certain days being poignant. Things must still be quite raw for you still since its only 7 months since you lost your dad. For what its worth my experience is that it does get easier as time passes.

    Best wishes

    Antoinette x

  • Hi Antoinette.

    That's lovely - how lucky your dad could still manage to type at all! Unfortunately my dad has been diagnosed for coming up 3 years and lost the ability to do anything with his hands, or talk at all, a long time ago. I can only guess at what he would say to me these days! I miss him terribly and he is still here - wish he could communicate in some way but he has almost complete paralysis now. Awful, awful disease.

    All the best, thanks for sharing with us

    Fran x

  • Oh Fran, I really feel for you. There was a time when Dad seemed to be losing his ability to speak and I was in despair at what we would do if that happened. I live in Newcastle and my sister lives in Australia so talking to him on the phone was really important. I feel very fortunate that he escaped that aspect of the disease. Having just read your background I can relate wholeheartedly with the experience of your dad being the first person you think of on waking and the last before you go to sleep.But please don't think this isn't about you. This disease doesn't just affect the sufferer; it affects all that care for them to.

    Thinking of you.

    Antoinette x

  • thanks Antoinette. that means a lot.... isn't it funny the different paths this can take. honestly some days i just want to scream at the injustice of it all...

    we are near newcastle too - whitley bay, having recently moved back from abroad to try and make more sense of what is happening to my family..! mum and dad are in stannington.

    hope we can stay in touch.

    best wishes

    fran & family x

  • Oh goodness! We should definitely meet up. Are you coming to the PSP Support Group meeting in Stannington on 21 February? I will be there so hopefully we can meet then.

    Look forward to it!

    Antoinette x

  • hi you guys and gals

    i am originally from nyorkshire (redcar) and have spent so amny happy summers at

    Tynemouth (there;s posh!)

    and really miss hte NE for its people its friendliness etc etc

    but i hav elived away from ther efor he past 45 years ( I am nearly 66) and cannot now go back to the NE to live as my life is here on Mersyside

    so i went to a local Warrington meeitng on thursday (taken by my carer) and it was a bit difficu;lt as most of the people had MSA which i happen to knwo about as a friend in Scotland has it

    just rambling on a Sat nigjht i am afraid

    lovei jill and a :-)

    ps r u joining the VIRTual valeniTInes party on

    tuesdAY??

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