My darling sweet bo

I’ve ordered an engraved memorial bench to go in St Luke’s Gardens where we used to sit sometimes between hospital appointments. I have a video taken in May I think of us sitting on a bench, you’re wearing your lovely navy blue polo shirt with a high collar. I know you liked it as it was comfy and the sleeves weren’t too tight for you when they had to take bloods. I hated it so much when you went into the bloods room and I was in the waiting room just outside praying that it wouldn’t hurt too much. You see, your beautiful veins were quite shallow naturally and had been made worse by the Chemotherapy. I often imagined I was doing it for you – almost guiding the nurses hand to be as gentle as possible. ‘Gentle with those precious veins please’, I’d often say.

When I decided to order your bench, I wrestled for ages with what the engraving should be. First I thought it should be a line from the Dylan Thomas poem I read at your funeral: And Death Shall Have No Dominion. It’s one of my favourite lines: ‘Thou lovers be lost, love shall not’ it means that thou the physical presence is not there, the emotion love, will never be lost. For eternity. Then I thought perhaps it could be ‘Celer et Audax’ (Speed and courage) the motto from the Royal Green Jackets, your TA regiment.

I dithered a bit…well..a lot.. as you know I can be a dithery Dolly.. but I thought it was important to get it right so rather than be hasty I let it simmer in the brain-pot. I’m doing that more and more. It feels good to let thoughts drop in. It’s going to be something I try going forward. Let things settle then an answer will present itself. Have faith.

I often wake up in the middle of the night or very early morning and the answer is there. You’ll see later when I tell you about Newcastle. So after much mulling and simmering I wrote down:

In Loving Memory of Terence Ronald Gibbons

Beloved Husband, Son, Brother and Friend

19th January 1965 – 28th November 2018

It felt right to honour all aspects of you my sweet love. The bench is being made in Scotland (where we got married!) then it’ll be delivered in 6-8 weeks and placed in the garden (Photo of the bench to follow). As soon as it arrives I’m going to sit on the bench, have a sarnie & coffee and we can chat. It’s right by the church I went into to light a candle and write a message about you a couple of days after you’d gone.

Your name my love, forever in that garden.

YOUR NAME, your footprint on this planet. Your legacy for all to see.

Your adoring wifey bo

Mrs G Xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx