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Dear Carl 

Grief is really unkind. I think it makes people behave in a way that appears unkind or uncaring.  Or maybe they don’t really care at all because their own grief is all consuming.  I would imagine that to be the case, we all loved you incredibly.  I guess only you’ll know now what the truth is behind the actions of some of your loved ones & why the door has been so firmly closed in my face.  But it hurts not really knowing why when I’d tried so hard.

The thing is I know without a shadow of a doubt that you wouldn’t want me to hurt or feel rejected.  You went out of your way to make me feel special and loved and tell me I was loved, so many times in our time together.  It surprises me (and hurts) so much to realise that so many of my fears regarding your family were actually true.  

You told me I was wrong but I felt it, always felt it, that unwillingness, that wall they put up around themselves, not really letting me in.  They’d smile & say hi, chat to me sometimes, I even got to tag along sometimes on the gigs or family meals….but never really felt like I was part of it.  It hurt me, but I’m sensitive & I told myself that kindness would win – that I knew eventually I could prove to them I was worthy of you. You thought me worthy and that meant so much…but how sad that wasn’t enough.  That’s me though & has been me my whole life. I think you understood that.  Always seeking approval, always wanting to be liked.  Too much. It was the same for you deep down. I know that much now. 

I know how much they loved you & that made me want so badly to be their friend.  You’d be so happy when they made an effort with me.  I could see it in your eyes, that hope, that tentative hope that there was a door opening and I’d be allowed inside.  Because I know you wanted us to be a family & ‘live the dream’.  That was another very Carl thing to say.  How hard we tried to keep the dream alive. 

Now you’re gone I have no place.  My grief has no place – it’s on it’s own, rattling around inside me, banging on the walls, looking for someone who truly understands what it feels like to lose you.  But nobody but them understands. And they don’t want to know my grief.  It has no place with them, because in their eyes I never had a place with you.  

So I’m looking for a place but nowhere fits without you.  You were my place. I look at my children’s faces & they see my pain & feel my pain, they miss you too. And they don’t have a place either.  So the 3 of us, who loved you so much are just in orbit.  I’m trying to protect the love we had, shield it in my heart & keep it close to me.  Because it’s all I have left to hang on to.  Memories of loving each other & being your girl.  I’ll always be your girl Carl. Always. 

This photo is when you bought me chocolate & sent me a photo of Cairo to pre-excite me of said chocolate. 

I love you so much. Always. 

Caroline xxx