BRIDGET WHELAN writer

Muse, News and Views

A month’s mind for Mike, my husband and friend

Mike Whelan died on the morning of Saturday February 9th 2013 after a short, savage illness. He was 62 and in May we would have been married 30 years.MikeI don’t belong to a tradition where you present a stiff upper lip to the world and ordinary life grinds on. I belong to a culture where you stop. Where routine activities break. Where you acknowledge by what you don’t do, as much as by what you do, that nothing will ever be the same again.
And then somehow you carry on.

This blog is not a personal record of my life. It focuses on the business of my life – writing and reading and stuff like that. But no new posts will appear until March 10th. I will keep a month’s mind for Mike.
And if you haven’t come across that phrase before this wikipedia entry is interesting, but there will be no Requiem for Mike, no prayers to a God he didn’t believe in, just a celebration under a big Sussex sky.
And we will hold him tight.
Always.

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46 comments on “A month’s mind for Mike, my husband and friend

  1. Caroline Auckland
    February 10, 2013

    Thinking of you.

    • bridget whelan
      February 10, 2013

      Thank you. I don’t know how he would have felt about putting it all in a post – he never ‘got’ facebook and only started reading this blog when he was in the hospice and for the first time in a very long time had time on his hands….but I think he wld understand why I had to say something and then be quiet for awhile…

  2. Cathy Dreyer
    February 10, 2013

    Ah Bridget. I’m so sorry for your loss. I look forward to the end of March and I’ll think of you until then.

    • bridget whelan
      February 10, 2013

      What a nice thing to say – thank you
      I do appreciate it.

  3. callytaylor
    February 10, 2013

    Oh Bridget, I am beyond heartbroken for you. Thinking of you xx

    • bridget whelan
      February 10, 2013

      Thank you so much for getting in touch Cally — I often think f our days in Anam Cara. Think I need a dose of its tranquility.

  4. PATRICIA OSBORNE
    February 10, 2013

    Dear Bridget,

    Sorry always seems such a difficult word when trying to talk about loss, so I always run to poetry.

     These are the last few lines from ‘I am’ by John Clare

    And sleep as I in childhood sweetly slept, Untroubling and untroubled where I lie, The grass below, above, the vaulted sky.

    I think this sounds very peaceful but there are no words really but I am thinking of you.

    Pat   -Patricia Osborne patriciaosborne411@yahoo.com

    ________________________________

  5. t2n2
    February 10, 2013

    Sorry to hear about your loss Bridget. Sending you strength and love. Thelma Date: Sun, 10 Feb 2013 18:52:31 +0000 To: thilagoose@hotmail.com

    • bridget whelan
      February 10, 2013

      Thank you for saying the things taht are so hard to put into words

  6. Marie Wilcock (@Mlle_Wilco)
    February 10, 2013

    Sorry to hear of your loss.

    • bridget whelan
      February 11, 2013

      Thank you Marie – he fell ill on the last day of term….

  7. Laura Wilkinson
    February 10, 2013

    Oh, Bridget, my heart breaks for you. So sorry for your loss.

    • bridget whelan
      February 11, 2013

      Thank you. I know I keep saying that but I keep meaning it.

  8. Laura Wilkinson
    February 10, 2013

    Thinking of you, Bridget. Devastating.

  9. Laura Marcus
    February 10, 2013

    Just my take… for someone who blogs regularly as you do, it makes sense to explain to your readers why you need to be quiet for a while.

    A month’s mind sounds ideal. A necessary pause before continuing. Even if you aren’t religious, alternative rites of passage like this help I feel.

    I like to think he would’ve understood your need to share this. My thoughts and atheistic prayers are with you and your family. Bridget, I’m so very sorry.

    • bridget whelan
      February 11, 2013

      Glad you feel the same way…. Unable/unwilling to fall back on centuries of religious tradition, we have to invent our own rituals

  10. ann perrin
    February 10, 2013

    So brave of you to put all that up Bridget, Have been thinking of you,.. just found some celebration skies! Lots of love. Ann

  11. bridget whelan
    February 11, 2013

    Thank you Ann for writing @ just being there. Wonder what a celebration sky looks likes.

    • ann perrin
      February 11, 2013

      late last night I blogged my very best,..then worried if I was being too intrusive..as one does .. but one day soon you’ll see one… and you’ll just know..x
      .

  12. creativityorcrazy
    February 11, 2013

    So sorry for your loss. I think it’s especially hard when it’s someone you love and you’ve been with each other for so long. I’ve been with my husband for almost 24 years and we’ve just begun on hospice.

    • bridget whelan
      February 11, 2013

      But we’re greedy, aren’t we? Long is not long enough. My thoughts go out to you and I am very, very glad to know that there is a hospice that can help and support you. Mike chose to die at home but sent about two weeks in Martlet Hospice in Hove, a wonderful haven that gave us both so much comfort

  13. Peter Germany
    February 11, 2013

    I’m sorry to hear of your loss. I remember how much it hurt my grandad when my nan passed away. My thoughts are with you.

  14. Vikki Thompson
    February 11, 2013

    Oh Bridget, I am so sorry 😦

    If there is anything I can do honey please don’t hesitate to get it touch. You are in my thoughts xx

    • bridget whelan
      February 12, 2013

      Thank you Vikki – think I may have replied by email or was I just sending good vibes back to you – it all works, doesn’t it?

      • Vikki Thompson
        February 12, 2013

        You did Bridget, no worries.

        I’d like to think it does honey xx

  15. simonedavy
    February 11, 2013

    I’m so sorry Bridget. I shall miss your posts and look forward to hearing from you again soon. Thinking of you.

  16. Cheryl Fassett
    February 11, 2013

    So very sorry for your loss. Take time to heal, we will still be here when you are ready to return.

  17. niall
    February 11, 2013

    Respect, love and strength to you Bridget.

  18. cathum
    February 11, 2013

    My condolensces, Bridget. What a lovely idea your month’s mind is. I wish you many special rembrances.

    • bridget whelan
      February 13, 2013

      Glad you like the idea of a month’s mind. It has a psychological rightness to it doesn’t it…? Since found out that other cultures/religions have something similar. You need a month to learn how to breath again, not get back to normal (there is now no normal) but to remember that you can put one step in front of the other. I’m writing as though I have already reached that place and I haven’t. I’m hoping. I suppose

  19. ozonenut
    February 11, 2013

    Such sad news, so beautifully written

  20. Lisa Redmond (@LisaReadsBooks)
    February 11, 2013

    So sorry for your loss and how brave of you to explain to us, people you don’t even know. Best of luck in the future.

    • bridget whelan
      February 13, 2013

      I did wonder about keeping quiet about being quiet for a month, but I had a need to explain, to make it different. Thanks for your message Lisa.

  21. angelanowak
    February 12, 2013

    I wish I was only dreaming about your post. So hard to imagine. You are in my prayers though, Bridget. I think you can use God’s peace that surpasses our understanding in moments like this… with much love in Christ, Angela.

  22. A.K.Andrew @artyyah
    February 12, 2013

    Oh Bridget, I am SO sorry for your loss. My thoughts are with you and your family. Much love x

  23. Karen
    February 12, 2013

    Margaret, So sorry for your loss – you have been in my thoughts these past few days. I met you & Mike many years ago when I was visiting Aunt Maggie with my Nanny Polly….I was 10 at the time and even then I knew what lovely people you both were. Your months mind for Mike is a beautiful tribute and a chance for you to heal a little. My thoughts & wishes are with you and yours x

    • bridget whelan
      February 13, 2013

      Hi Karen lovely to hear from you and I remember you at 10 and, of course, your lovely grandmother my auntie Polly. She was a gentle woman (except perhaps when she was playing Twenty Five…I never did get it when she’d instruct ‘poor man going for lime’…).
      Thank you for your kind thoughts & SO glad you think the month’s mind appropriate. I asked Ben and Joe’s permission before hitting publish, but even so I was a little concerned. Talking to you like this makes me glad I wrote the post.

  24. Lesley Scoble
    February 25, 2013

    My thoughts are with you and my heart goes out to you at so sad a time. Lesley (Scoble)

  25. siobhandaiko
    February 27, 2013

    I’m so sorry. Please accept my sympathy at this sad time.

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