Just a quick note to let you know how today went. Jen's funeral was organised by her family after Caz had chatted at length with Jen as to what she wanted done. They organised a beautiful, simple service. They minister was excellent and the eulogy was delivered by Suzie Blashki, the head of the Palliative Care Unit. Suzie spoke beautifully about the effect that Jenni had on the entire staff at PCU and her long and courageous battle. She spoke about Jen's love for Jamie and Jack and Jen's wishes and hopes for their futures. And she spoke about Jen's initial determination to always go home from PCU until her final acceptance a few months ago that she wouldn't be going home again. Jen's Mum's partner played the piano for the music and he was brilliant. Jamie briefly spoke about his life with and love for his Mum and did her proud and Jen's sister read a beautiful poem.
Jack was so brave. He sat between Jamie's girlfriend and myself and listened (and when the minister got Jen's age wrong saying she was 39 instead of forty he couldn't help himself and whispered to me, "Mum was forty, Dad!") and alternately leaned on each of our arms. He came to the cemetery and dropped in a small red heart shaped cushion. It was one of a pair that Jen had got for he and her to give to each other so they always had a small part of each other's heart and he kept the other in his breast pocket. He wanted to stay a while after the committal and with the support of various family and friends he was ok after a short while. Jen would have been as proud of him as I was and I know in my heart that he will be fine going forwards from here.
Jen's family all went back to Liz's for the afternoon and Jack had a great time with his cousins. And Liz and Caz and their husbands have made it very clear that they also wish to help keep Jack close to the family and his cousins. It was quality family time. I had a few drinks with the men and had a great time. And tonight has been hard. Even though we all knew this time was coming and I have been Jack's full time Dad for nearly 5 months now, it all seems so hard all of a sudden and I have a feeling of, "What now?" The PCU and Jen has been everyone's focus for so long that now she's gone we all just feel a little lost. There is definitely a sense of relief but also feeling lost.
I know with tomorrow comes another day and a new beginning for us but tonight is just tough. Thanks for all your support and wishes. I will keep you all posted as we all move forward and start afresh. Jack's cold is on the improve and we finish school this week for a 5-6 week break so we will get away for a road trip at some stage. Do some camping, be boys and have some fun.
I have some more pictures and "stuff" to share with you in the coming days.
Take care and thank you.
Monday, 14 December 2009
Posted by Jen Ballantyne at 11:14 pm