Day 287

Julie Burchill mourns her son Jack, who lost his long battle with depression this summer. She is a novelist and author who describes herself as a ‘militant feminist”. This how she describes her grief:

“Do I miss you? No. I don’t. Not the way you were towards the end. Would I die to make you come back happy? Yes. Infinitely. Does it break my heart when my beautiful mates tell me you loved me and were proud of me? Yes. It does. I would rather you had hated me and were living than love me and be dead. Can I stand it? Yes. Forever.

Am I brave? No, just callous and religious. Do I think “Why me?” No, never. I am clarified by grief – vivified by grief. Some people want me to be distraught, hysterical, broken – misery loves company after all, and my reaction perplexes them. I don’t roar or rend or wrestle with my faith; it’s actually stronger. I am one of the lucky ones.

I am glad God gave him to me, and glad God took him home. Every morning when I walk out into the sunshine, I love to put my face up to the sun and then I think: “Jack doesn’t have to suffer this anymore!” (He hated the sun as it made his dreadlocks all sticky.) There is comfort everywhere. No longer mocked by the sun or soaked by the rain, now he is above it and can enjoy it once again, as he had as a playful child. If my joyous mourning upsets anyone, Tough!”

RIP Jack. You have every reason to be proud of your Mum.

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