3 years

Where has that time gone? 3 years ago today everything changed. Did we want the change? Definitely not. Some things have got easier, some things haven’t. The thing that’s made the most difference is time. Time to grieve, time to process, time to heal. Although it’s not been as easy as that.

A lot has happened over the past 3 years that has had a significant impact on our lives. Some things have been good, made only possible because of our unfortunate circumstances. Our limitations were reduced dramatically meaning more things were achievable. This doesn’t mean we’re all happier though, quite the opposite. Knowing why we can do certain things easier now is a bitter pill to swallow. That is something difficult to deal with on a daily basis.

A tremendous amount of bad has also happened, too much for me to write about. Some things I can’t write about. All of it I am forced to deal with myself, day in day out. Its these things that make moving forward a lot more difficult. All of this hinders my ability to deal with the grief and it’s these matters that have a great impact on the children, through no doing of my own. I wish I could protect and shield them from these things, but it’s impossible.

But, 3 years on and we’re still here, somehow moving forward and still there for each other. The 4 of us have been put through an amazing amount of turmoil, but we pull together and help each other through. As a family. Like it should be. They are now 12, 8 and 6 and have endured more in the past 3 years that a lot of adults will have in a lifetime. I am so proud of them all and will always be. Simply put, they are amazing people I am proud to be a Dad to. And I am certain Lyanda would be proud of them all too.

Another traumatic time….

Christmas is meant to be a happy occasion, but the past couple have been really difficult. With specific personal things that have happened, the whole dynamic of our home have changed. Now, things are a lot calmer. Everyone is happier. I decided this past Christmas would be a nicer one for us all. A better one. The kids deserve that at least.

But then things changed. A week before Christmas, I received some more devastating news. My eldest son (from a previous relationship) had sadly taken his own life. He was 19 and had his whole life ahead of him. I was completely heartbroken 💔 all over again. This has been extremely difficult to deal with, on top of everything else too.

There have been tough times over the years between us that were completely out of my control. Through these difficulties, I never stopped loving him or thinking about him, or my daughter either. I have tried several times to reach out to them but sadly nothing ever came from it.

I just wish we made the time to talk and make things better. I’m heartbroken we’ll never get that chance again. My only hope now is that my daughter will be willing to talk and we can reclaim the relationship we should have been allowed to have all these years.

I was a bearer at his funeral along with 3 of his closest friends. Nice, but also difficult and emotional. But I wanted to do it, to honour him. Seemed fitting, to not only be part of his journey into this world but I should be a part of him leaving it too. It was really painful and hurt like mad. No parent should have to say goodbye to their children, and grandparents definitely shouldn’t. It started snowing as the service began and literally finished snowing as it was finishing. We took that as a nice sign and a final flourish from him to us all.

I’ve said all along, the only thing I can imagine being worse than losing a spouse would be to lose a child. I honestly didn’t think I would have to deal with one scenario, let alone both.


It’s been a while since my last post, so much has been happening. We’ve had to deal with so many personal changes over the past few months on top of lockdown. None have been easy, or wanted. It’s been another difficult time for us all. None of it needed to happen. None of it should have. Unfortunately, what has happened has happened and now we just have to get on with things.

People have decided they no longer want to be part of our lives. This has caused hurt, upset and heartache. I have tried my best, but I’m human too. I have my flaws, everybody has. Sometimes the ability to see through the issues outweighs the actions themselves. It can be a struggle. But, I still try my best. I still do what I can. A part of this is also knowing when nothing you do is good enough for some people, despite your efforts. Its hard. Life is hard.

Sometimes a change is a good thing. But not always, sometimes they’re bad. Things don’t always work out the way we hoped or planned. Sometimes bad things come from a good situation. Likewise, out of bad situations good things can happen. The phrase ‘storm before the calm’ is very appropriate. Emotionally, mentally and physically it has all taken its toll on myself and us here as a family. But we’re all staying strong, together. I hope this is now my calm after the storm.

2 years

2 years. 2 years since you were sadly taken away from us. 2 long years. 2 long and lonely years. 2 years where so much has happened, some good and some bad. Still each day goes slowly but time moves quickly. 2 years as a solo parent. 2 years on my own. With my own thoughts and no one to talk to. I miss that.

It’s been a tough few days, reliving the moments 2 years ago. Remembering the good and unfortunately the bad. With daily life and other things going on too, it’s really stressful and hectic. Don’t know whether I’m coming or going half the time.

But this ‘new’ life of ours goes on, one day at a time. Having to find strength I didn’t know I had, having to fight to get through each day. And it is a battle. Every time I think things can’t get worse, life challenges me.

One thing I have learnt is most people don’t want to know the truth. No one wants to know what’s going on inside my head. Yes, they empathise. Yes, they try to understand. Yes they are sorry. But no one needs to know what it’s like. No one deserves this pain.

Each day is the same, feeling the pain in our loss. For myself and the kids it’s a living nightmare. Their daily tears, crying ‘I miss mummy’ emphasises that grief does not go away. There are just better, more manageable days. Certain special days doesn’t make it worse as some people think, it’s hard every day. Anniversaries make our loss even more poignant. More painful. As time moves on, no one knows what lies ahead. Life is what we make it. I can only hope one day I will start to live again, not just survive.


It’s been a while since my last post, certain things have happened which has made it difficult to focus and mentally it’s been exhausting. One battle after another, it’s all taken its toll. But I’m continuing to plod on and trying my best to get through it all.

It’s a weird time we’re all experiencing. This time of lockdown because of the coronavirus. The loneliness, struggle, exhaustion, worries, changing moods and daily difficulties. It feels like I’m beginning my grieving process all over again. Everyone is isolated from each other, and for a good reason. Or at least meant to be. Staying away from loved ones and friends, only able to speak to them from a distance, by video call or on the phone. Using our daily exercise allowance for some fresh air, a change of scenery and as a bit of normality. Even though it is eerily quiet everywhere. We don’t have a garden, the daily exercise is the only escape we all have. None of this is easy. Our generation are all very fortunate to have not experienced anything like this before. It is a steep learning curve for us all. As hard as it is, it is a short term loss for our long term gain.

Lyanda’s birthday was on the 20th of April. She would have been 39 this year. Another year closer to the big 4-0 she was dreading getting too. Sadly, she won’t see it and I won’t get to wind her up about being nearly 40 either. For her, that’s probably a good thing. The kids drew some pictures for Mummy and we stuck them in the windows on her birthday. They are still there now.

As difficult as this is to say, for the first time in nearly 2 years I am glad Lyanda isn’t here. Not in a horrible way, but I honestly don’t know how she would have coped during these troubled times. With her health issues and her disability it would have been an extremely tough and traumatic time. Her anxiety would have been off the scale, her panic attacks would be constant and the worrying would have driven her to insanity. For her to not have to witness all of this is a blessing. Stay safe everyone 💜

A special day out

Amidst all the chaos and stress, good things have happened. Sometimes these are small things. Other times they have a bigger impact. This particular day is one of those.

A local shopping centre to us, merlins walk in Carmarthen had an event on a few weeks ago. One of several throughout the year, aimed at children but the adults can join in too. On this particular one, they had a fairy godmother asking people for their Xmas wishes. My (realistic) wish was to treat the kids to a nice day out. A few days after the event, I had a phone call saying they would like to grant me my wish. They wanted to gift us a day out at a local railway on the santa train.

It was arranged for the 21st December, just before Xmas which made it more special. There was face painting, a bouncy castle and a magician all at the venue for the kids to enjoy. And of course, Santa. Each child saw Santa, had a chat with him and his helpers and received a gift.

Despite the difficulty and emotional time of Xmas for all of us, it was a nice day to get away from it all. In no way have we all forgotten, but it was nice to see them all be kids again.

A massive thankyou to Merlins Walk shopping centre, Carmarthen for gifting us this really nice and much needed day out.

My ongoing thoughts and feelings

Apparently I don’t talk enough, or not at all as it seems
Thought I’d write all this down, a bit daunting and extreme

Yes, I have the kids. And yes I am still here.
It doesn’t make it easier, with a head filled full of fear

Worrying constantly about my debt, finances out of control
Not sure what’s happening next, or what the future holds

Along with grief, hate and anger, it’s one hell of a heavy load
To carry inside all by myself on a long, lonely, winding road

This journey isn’t wanted, needed or even asked for
Struggling with it every day I just want to walk out the door

Depression getting worse, anxiety soaring high
A constant battle going on to see each day go by

The stress is unbelievable, the headache never ending
Worrying about every single thing. I’m fine, I keep pretending

I eat too much late at night as there’s nothing else to do
Putting on too much weight as its silent without you

I’m really lonely deep inside and there’s no one around to see
No adult around to talk to. No one here, just me

The thoughts inside my head, people wouldn’t understand
The way I come across to them, nothing is that grand

I say that all is good and there’s nothing wrong with me
A smile for the outside world. That’s what people want to see

I don’t talk about my problems, no one needs to feel my pain
Trying to survive til night time just to do it all over again

Unfortunately I’m now like this, a sad and lonely sole
No motivation at all, no more personal goals

I laugh, I’m sad, upset and fine all mixed up together
I cry pretty much everyday, it feels like it will be forever

Now I’m all messed up, a complete mixed bag of emotions
Failing to find my way through life like a shipwreck on the ocean

I once was an outgoing and happy, sociable person
Now I’m lonely with no self worth and it only seems to worsen

The friends I have are great, I couldn’t do this without them
Each and every one of you are amazing and absolute gems

For those I’ve pushed away, I’m sorry it came to that
My fault, without realising, I’ve been an utter prat

I’m trying my best to do it, whichever way I can
It’s not easy to do it all, I’m just an emotional man

I can’t help the way I feel, even though I have really tried
To be the person that I want, even with a brain that’s fried

Now that this is written, with my mind still filled with dread
That is me in a nutshell. And the thoughts inside my head

Special people

A lot of people I have known for almost my entire life. Some I have met over the past months, years and decade. Some I haven’t met at all. Yet all these people I class as family and friends. We talk either in person, online or message each other. Doesn’t matter how or how often, the sentiment is there and is always really appreciated. They might not ask how I am each time or check to see if I’m coping. But, just chatting can mean so much.

Some people have come into my life after Lyanda sadly passed away. A handful of these are still around. Some more than others, which is fine. We all have our own lives and our own battles to deal with. Life is not a competition. But, for someone to come into my life when I am extremely vulnerable, at my worst, struggling, unable to communicate or cope with daily life and still be there today is amazing.

I know I’ve not been the easiest of people to deal with over the past year and a half, but I am trying my best. It’s all I can do. There will be good and bad times ahead, I know that. The unpredictability of grief isn’t easy, especially when there are children involved. I hope these people know how much I appreciate them and how helpful and supportive they have been. I just hope, as my journey continues, I don’t push them away.

I am normally the person that will help anyone with whatever they need. It is difficult to accept help, even though deep down I know I probably need it. Knowing this doesn’t make it any easier, and I won’t ask anyone for anything. But all these people already help more than they probably realise, and for that I am grateful.

A child friendly memorial

The kids have various toys, but one thing they all have a few of is funko pop vinyl figures. I too have a few I’ve started collecting now. I found some groups for these on Facebook which I joined. It was here I found out about custom pops and that people can make them to order. It got me thinking. Aside from pictures and a few other things, there isn’t a massive choice of things that children can relate to as a memorial for a loved one.

Thinking of this, I messaged someone who was recommended to me. A company on Facebook called F.P.D. Funko POP Displays. After agreeing to do this difficult task, a lot of information was discussed to make sure he could do the pop justice. Pictures were sent, changes and additions were made. But we got there in the end.

Then a package turned up. I couldn’t bring myself to open it. It sat for 2 days as I looked at the box, knowing what was inside. I then managed to open it. Wow! The pictures didn’t do it justice. Amazing attention to detail and captures what I wanted.

I showed the kids when they came home from school. They took it in turns holding the statue, touching it and finding the small details. They were silent.

Expecting the worst, I prepared for their reaction. I was wrong. Suddenly, they smiled. They talked. They laughed. It was lovely. Something small like this they could relate to. It had the power to make them ask questions and talk about Mummy freely, without tears for once. We talked about Mummy for ages and they enjoyed remembering the good times with her. Then they all asked could I get each of them done too, I think it went down really well.

A massive thank you to Chris at F.P.D. for turning an idea into something special. It doesn’t change the reality of our lives, but it definitely gives the children something to relate to. F.P.D. Funko Pop Displays

Just being there….

I have found there are a few different types of people when it comes to talking or dealing with this taboo subject.

There are the ones that will talk to you about anything and everything, these people are good. They don’t judge, will listen and won’t react no matter what you say or do. No matter how good or bad. Then there are those that won’t or don’t talk to you, simply because they don’t know what to say. But they smile, nod, wave or similar, at least acknowledging you are exist. This is OK too, completely understandable. Then there are those that stare, point and whisper between each other. No need for it at all. All of this unfortunately is true for most people, whatever their situation.

I guess what I’m trying to say is, just ask. You’d be surprised how open we are about things and that we can actually hold a conversation about other things too. We have to carry on with our lives, raise children, move forward etc. As people we might change a bit, but that’s only us adapting to our ‘new normal’ lives.

Yes, we are dealing with something traumatic, and yes, it is difficult. But, there is no need to make us feel worse by pointing and staring like we have an incurable contagious disease.

Life is not a competition. Everyone goes through good and bad times. We all have thoughts and feelings. We are all only human after all.