There was always safety in our father’s presence. The memory of him rafting with me and my younger brother out on the Balmoral water in early Autumn is still vivid in my mind today, the same as the cold winter day we buried our mother.
We have never felt neglected by our widow father. And he has never made us feel any guilt although we ran around like mad monkeys in our family home where our mother spent her last weeks.
Now I am sitting by his bed as a grown woman with my own family, listening to him telling incoherent stories of the past. Maybe to him, this is the way he is coping with the open floodgate of emotions which have been bottled up for so long.