When I was told of my father’s death I thought I heard a thread snap. The longer you live the more losses we sustain and we develop coping mechanisms to deal with this. For reasons I find difficult to explain I use magical thinking. So when I viewed my father’s body I found myself thinking ‘If he is not here, then he must be somewhere else.’ I still cling to that belief.
It was a belief that sustained me throughout the aftermath of my father’s passing. I did not cry. I prided myself on my stoicism. I read aloud during the funeral service and although I was pale and trembling my voice was unwavering. I received undeserved compliments for this.