Jane Ballot

Being me in the world

Sunday 15th February

Today was a hard day, there’s no doubt, but it was also a good day. In fact, the whole weekend has been hard, but good.

I was up early and did some work, then went for a run. I still can’t go as far as I would if I was fit, but I’m definitely beginning to feel better when I’m running and can run further than I have for a while. I’m sure this is to do with getting (and feeing) stronger and also with just beginning to get fitter. A good feeling.

Whenever I run at the farm, I stop off at the dam, where Dad’s ashes are scattered. It’s always good to sit on the fallen tree and just be. Today, of course, it was also about anticipating being there for Mum, because we would scatter her ashes at the same place.

Who ever thought?

A year ago we all were just as we were. Now we have lost Mum, I’m a cancer survivor and so, so much else has happened.

The scattering was lovely. We all walked down to the dam and had the quiet ceremony. It was hard, but also quite peaceful. Always the worst for me is seeing how the others react. I wanted so much to be able to change things for them, to make it all better, but I couldn’t. I cannot. The only thing I can offer at all is empathy. And a great hug whenever it’s needed.

Daynia brought some rose petals, so we each scattered some petals and a bit of the ashes. The image that remains in my mind is the petals lying on the ground, partially covered by ashes. It’s amazing what a relatively large area a small box of ashes can cover.

I firmly do not believe that those grey remains are Mum. She is somewhere else. There is something, though, about the concept of that being the last of what we could see and hold of Mum. Now we have given them to the earth and to Dad. I have absolutely no doubt that the two of them are together and were watching as we performed what the minister described as the last rife associated with death.

I will miss her always. There is something right about the fact that her last remains are on the farm, in an area that she loved and loved to visit – and that she chose for Dad’s ashes to be scattered

It’s so hard to be without her and to do things without her. Yet, so many things, like this cancer journey, are doable simply because of her and what she taught me. Taught all of us. In fact, so much that she gave.

I am not so stubborn for nothing. Every step of the way, I have identified a difficulty, or something I’d rather not do, but I have always said it’s okay. And it has been. And will continue to do so.

Everything is doable. You just have to go about doing it.

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