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The Last Day in the Life of...

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Sian Rafferty The Last Day in the Life of... A few months ago, I was diagnosed with cancer. It was quite unexpected and I didn't know what to think or feel. When the cold words hit me, my brain froze and time stopped. I was completely speechless. I took time out to think about things and realized that I just had to live life to the fullest and take each day as it came and stop worrying about what lies ahead. I wasn't going to waste the rest of my life on nothing. I'm going to be remembered as a strong man! It was the first day of living, knowing that I had cancer, and one step closer to the edge. Death. Sun poured in through the window of the small bungalow. I struggled out of bed and kissed my wife Sheila on the cheek, she stirred, turned over, and went back to sleep. I'm going to miss that face. Even though I will be long gone, the memory will live on. I shuffled into the bathroom and flicked on the light. Peering into the mirror I analysed every wrinkle and blemish on my wilting face. Today I had to take the city train to the golf club. I worked there part time, but I despised my manager, he really aggravated me. I put on my daily fa´┐Żade and carried on preparing to go to work. I picked up my pre-booked train tickets and stumbled out of the door. ...read more.


They wanted to take a walk down the beach to build sand castles. They adored building high, towering buildings with sand. They were always brilliant too. I recall one time in the summer when the buried me in the sand and thought It was hilarious. Oh the wonderful days! We were having an amazing night. Spending time with my grandchildren always put a grin on my old haggard face. The kids demanded chocolate fudge ice-cream. It was their favourite, and I always took them to get the delicious treat whenever they came around. They couldn't get it in their town. I had no money, but didn't want to see their small faces turn glum. Reaching into my pocket to look for some coins, I yanked out a receipt from the local jewellery store, which was no good. Then I pulled out my house key and I finally came across five pounds on loose change at the bottom of all the useless junk. I handed the kids the money and they scuttled off like crabs to the ice-cream store where there were machines and tubs full of tasty ice-cream waiting for the next child to come through the shop doors. They laughed loudly, skipping and tripping on the way. The fun went on, the laughs, the smiles and the cherishable moments until it turned to dusk. We sat under the velvet sky pointing at starts and discussing space. ...read more.


Hand in hand we cried together and discussed all the good times and bad times. I could see that he was taking it badly, I felt even worse than I already did. Maybe I shouldn't have told him. I held him in my arms and told him not to worry. He was making this all the more harder for me, but I understood he was too young to accept something like this. My sides seized up and I moaned horrifically in pain. Ben's facial expressions showed fear. It was all too much for me now. I yelled for help. Ben panicked and he was joined by Sheila and Tanya at his side. Ben, still shaking with fear, collapsed in tears. "I love you all". I managed to whisper, my voice was barely even there at all, and it was broken up and raspy. They broke down. Sheila grabbed the phone and called the doctor, I presumed he was now on his way. "There's nothing you can do now". I sighed. I was dying. We all cried, it was awful, this was it. Tanya told me how I would be remembered forever; "Dad, don't let the memory of us fade away, we will always be there with you." She wept as she spoke. This was so hard. I shut my eyes, I couldn't even think now, or move. I lay there surrounded by the people I loved and cared about the most. This is how I wanted it to be. I groaned and then took my last breath. Silence. ...read more.

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