My dear dad passed away on 21st June, the longest day of the year. He was 87 and had been unwell for some time. I took this photograph at a family gathering to celebrate his 80th birthday.
I am not going to to reprint the wonderful eulogy I co-wrote with my brother, or go on about the emotional send off we gave him. That’s all private. All I want to say is, if you are grieving, bless you. If the memory of your loved one is tainted by cancer’s endgame, may the painful memories fade and may you be left with the good stuff; all of it.
I realise now this blog has been a kind of therapeutic distraction for me. You see, I knew this was his last year. It was a possibility after his diagnosis of an advanced tumour last summer, and it became apparent to me at Christmas, when he was too unwell to enjoy the festive season. He had a decent spring though. I have a lovely photo of him larking around with my girls in April this year. He looks well. It’s the last one I took of him. I knew I wouldn’t be able to get a better one.
And now, my brother and I have been clearing his bungalow, coming across things he had kept; sentimental things. Typical of his generation, he wasn’t great with the finer emotions, but we are in no doubt of his love for us; the letters home we wrote that he kept, the photographs and mementos we have found of our journey that he stored away for years. He loved his family. We were everything to him. It’s true what Joni Mitchell sang. You don’t what you’ve got ’till it’s gone.
Well, this is the end of this blog too. I am cutting it short. The momentum has gone and I can’t see it coming back. Thanks to those of you who followed and liked my images and posts, but to be honest, I have so enjoyed being away from social media these last weeks. My dad passing away has changed my direction. I am returning to colour landscape photography, my first love, and the discipline I am arguably most at home with. I want to be the best I can be. I have a need to be out there witnessing the world in all its technicolour beauty and glory and will be reviving my main website http://www.chrispattison.co.uk in good time. I hope to see you there.