In April this year, I shared with you that my wonderful grandmother passed away in my newsletter Focus on Goodbye. Last week, I was staying with my mother in Stratford-upon-Avon and over dinner in a local pub we were reminiscing about some of the special moments we had shared together with her. It was then that we heard the sad news that HRH The Queen had passed away.
Another rock in our lives had disappeared. In that moment I felt like I had lost another grandmother. My mother said she felt as though she had lost another mother and in an email from my father he too shared this sensation of deep loss.
My father reminded me that his mother would have been the same age if she had still been alive. He also drew some relevant comparisons from his mother to The Queen. He noted that his mother had also driven military ambulances during the last years of the war. That they had both married dashing military men who had distinguished themselves during the war (and survived) and my father's mother even had a Corgi called Bambi.
Perhaps it was because despite all the formality of her role, The Queen was so relatable that we feel this loss. I have heard many people share their individual stories of meeting The Queen and how she touched their lives in such different ways. Despite never meeting her I still wanted to go and pay my respects so I went into London last Saturday. No words can really describe what a special experience it was to visit Buckingham Palace and Green Park. I put together a short video which you can watch here.
An incredibly beautiful floral tribute started to emerge with generous gestures left from so many people from across the world for such an amazing woman who was so clearly loved worldwide. I can only imagine the sea of flowers that must have been created now almost a week later. In the park, I felt connected with all the other people also grieving in their own way.
This week I have been transfixed by the various displays of pageantry and last weekend in Exeter I witnessed the Proclamation of the new King Charles III outside Exeter Cathedral. This was to be the first time I heard God Save the King being sung and I got goosebumps.
With every end there is always a new beginning. The end of one era marks the beginning of a new one. The Queen's death has been a timely reminder that we only have one life so go out there and live it and love it! Focus on Life!
ACTION POINT - You only have one life. Live it to the full!