At the end of last year we were joined on The Bridge Retreat by the respected Jewellery Designer, Dominic Jones. Below he shares his heartfelt experience of losing his father when he was only a young child and the rippling impact of his unprocessed grief, prior to attending the retreat.
“It’s been 30 years since my dad passed away, so crazy, such a crazy amount of time. I was 4 and a half when he died, I have friends with kids that age and they seem so so young, barely children. It’s wild that I have memories of him still from such a young age. I remember holding onto his back as he swam in a pool on holiday in France.
I remember the doctor coming over to our house when he started to get ill and the dark colour of his urine sample, I remember having to share my petits filous with him as he was finding eating hard, I remember visiting him in hospital and drinking Lucozade, I remember watching The Land Before Time on the end of his bed in the hospital at Christmas.
I remember them moving him to a hospice on Willen Lake, a lake he had designed, (he was a landscape architect and the lake had formally been an old mine). I remember he could see the birds on feeders outside his room in the hospice. I remember this day 30 years ago going to visit his body at the hospice, I remember playing under the table at the wake. I remember putting soil on a tree planted to remember him and a wild flower garden that was designed next to the lake and hospice that was opened in his memory. I have all of these memories but I don’t think I was old enough to really truly understand. Grief is a strange thing for us as adults and at that age I don’t think there’s any way you can understand and process the significance of a loss that big or understand the change in dynamics around you, now having a young grieving mother, a home half empty.