The sheet is blank, not so the mind. A topic is required if I am to submit a blog this evening.

The church bells peal the Angelus. It is 6pm. Such signposts mark the day and structure time. But even those aids and watches and newscasts have not kept me grounded temporally this week. I have been able to discern neither the day nor the hour. It has all been vague and confusing.

C’est nouveau pour moi de me retrouver si perdue. Incapable de retrouver mes points de repère, je me trompe de journée et je me perds en chemin pour un souper chez une amie. Confuse et fatiguée, je marcherai vers le téléphone combien de fois avant que ça va me rentrer en tête qu’il est décédé?

This is stunning this behaviour of disorientation. Indeed he was a good friend with whom I spoke daily and spent many hours weekly. The acute grief is subsiding; the tears are less close to the surface. My friends have been amazingly supportive. We are mourning together. This evening I can say I knew it was Sunday all day and could figure out the time within 60 minutes. But this being at loose ends is disconcerting. Great tracks of time seem empty. How can it be so when we would only have spent 30 minutes on the phone daily or shared a meal with friends and watched a hockey game?

Le temps semble vide … vide d’une personne avec qui partager les idées et les questions; vide de la présence d’une personne qui était toujours disponible et aidant. Une mort subite nous arrache un être cher. Nous devons nous ajuster, compenser, accepter que ça ne sera plus comme avant.

Belief in an afterlife does nothing to ease the initial impact. Although there is consolation that death came without pain, those words also are false. The pain is what we who are left behind now face. The degree, intensity, frequency of painful periods will vary among family and friends and will probably abate with time.

Il y a toujours de la douleur et souffrance avec une mort. Mais, on s’encourage. On prend soin l’un de l’autre. On se surveille pour mieux manger et vivre. De cette tragédie, il a de la lumière et de l’espoir. Demain les cloches de l’église vont sonner. Lundi les gens vont rentrer au travail plusieurs vont parler de leurs vacances. Les achats pour la rentrée commenceront.

Life goes on. It will be changed for a group of people who now mourn Robert Travers. But come March he will be with us as we sing, ‘When Irish Eyes are Smiling’.


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