I had Christmas planned. I was sending my father to spend Christmas with my sister who was very unwell, and I was looking forward to spending it alone.
And then my sister died. A long road trip taking dad and my cousin to and from the funeral, trying to process it all, cancelling dad’s Christmas travel, getting certificates and letters to justify a refund. And so on. The bureaucracy associated with dying seems endless.
My sister’s death was unexpected. She was terminally ill, we knew, but the end came far more quickly than anyone thought. We thought she had months left.
So now I have Christmas to organise for dad and for one of my two nephews who is understandably at a loss but wants to be with his grandfather and me.
It’s times like this when being alone is especially challenging. I had a very difficult relationship with my sister and that complicates things. I don’t really know what I need in the way of support, nor do I know who to ask for it from.