Pippa Rea

Pippa's Journey with a Brain Tumour

Forgive Me If….

Three months after Pippa has passed and I am still numb.  Please forgive me if I:

don’t speak

don’t get out of the car to watch the footy

don’t sympathise if your child has a cold or a cough over winter

don’t look like I’m following the conversation (I’m not)

don’t socialise

don’t look you in the eye

don’t say I’m sorry that your mother, father, grandparent, uncle, aunt, friend…has passed away at the age of 50, 60,70, 80, 90…  I’m sorry for you but I simply cannot say the words because I am just so raw for Pippa, James, Patrick and myself.  She was only eleven years old!  It’s so unfair!

I still go to tell Pippa things.  I still go to show her a funny photo or a photo of a baby.  I still want to tell her something I have seen or heard or done.  I can’t though and I never remember that; I always have to remind myself that I just can’t anymore.  My little shadow is no longer there.  I go into Pippa’s room every night and every morning opening and closing the blinds and turning lamps on and off.  She would like that I am doing that.

A friend has given me two quotes recently.  They very aptly put into words these past three months:

She’s in the sun, the wind, the rain,

she’s in the air you breathe with every breath you take.

she sings a song of hope and cheer, there’s no more pain, no more fear.

You’ll see her in the clouds above, hear her whisper words of love,

you’ll be together before too long, until then listen for her song.

Pippa’s songs are everywhere.  I especially love it when people tell me about moments when songs that they hear remind them of Pippa.

In her own words it is seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months…

Pippa, there is not a month, week, day, hour, minute or second that I don’t think of you.

Sometimes it’s okay if the only thing you did today was breathe.

I am managing to breathe, but most days at some point I have to manage my breathing.  

Forgive me, but it is so heartbreakingly unfair and I am so terribly heartbroken.


Friday 26th June

Today is 2 years since I took  Pippa to the doctor and discovered a lump in her brainstem.  Today is confusing.  I don’t know whether it’s a day I recognise anymore or not.  In reality, it’s old news I guess.  Today’s date has been surpassed now by another date.  

Still though it sits with me as a day I will never forget in my life.  A day were my anxiety levels were high before seeing a doctor.  Call it mother’s instinct.  I knew I was not going to get good news.  I’d been in tears three times on the phone trying to book scans before even seeing the GP.  I had stood at the counter in the doctors’ clinic in tears trying to make an earlier appointment.  Does she have a fever? No.  Is she vomiting? No. Does she have any pain? No. A cough? No.  Well, what is actually wrong with her?  I don’t know.  I did know.  I knew that something was drastically wrong but I had no words for what it was or how I knew.  

From the moment we walked into he GP’s room though we were fast tracked.  Fast tracked into a whirlwind of spinning madness.  

We were told to go home and get a book each ready for the long wait for a scan as Pippa was being squashed in at the end of the day.  We didn’t even open our books, nor did we even have a seat in the waiting room.  Pippa was straight in and onto the machine for her first of many MRIs.  There was no wait.  I was told to leave and go for a walk.  I rang a friend in Melbourne to ensure her scans got read quickly.   Little did I know they were being read live in Melbourne as I was talking.  

And then the whirlwind really started.  It picked it up and spun us around and around and around with dizzying consequences rushing us to Melbourne in the middle of an horrendously foggy night.  A drive that took us over 4 and a half hours. It kept us awake and with doctors for the next 24 hours.  

It doesn’t really matter whether I recognise this date or not.  I think about it anyway.  All the time.  Every single day.  


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