Former sports presenter Simon Thomas has shared a touching note his nine-year-old son gave to him, where he wrote about facing their grief together since losing his mum to cancer.
“Hi Daddy,” reads the colourful note by his son Ethan, filled with love heart doodles. “I got good and bad news for you. Good: Halloween is over. Bad: we miss Mummy! Grief is a hard thing to handle but together we can make it through this raging storm of grief. I love you.”
The proud dad shared the note on Twitter on Tuesday. “The way my boy is coping with the loss of his mum continues to inspire me and fill me with hope,” he tweeted. “He wrote this yesterday without prompting and without help.”
Simon told HuffPost UK the note from his son “meant the world” to him.
“He’s having to navigate the hardest of journeys and I’m trying my very best to help him do that,” he said. “To hear him express how he’s feeling so eloquently and yet so young, encouraged me to believe I’m getting something right.”
Simon’s wife Gemma died in November 2017 after a brief battle with acute myeloid leukaemia at just 40 years old.
Gemma had complained of headaches for three weeks and had been to see her doctor three times. She ended up in A&E on a Monday, was diagnosed with blood cancer later that day, and on the Friday she passed away.
Since her death, Simon has been incredibly open about his grief on social media, which has helped others feel less alone in their struggles and prompted them to share their own experiences of loss.
“Gemma was everything - my soul mate, my rock, the wind beneath my wings and a beautiful mum,” Simon tweeted in January this year. “The pain of life without her is at times too much to bear but out of this heartbreak the light will shine again.”
This week Thomas revealed he’s in the early stages of a new relationship with someone who has supported him throughout his grief.
Speaking to Radio 5 Live presenter Anna Foster on Monday, he said: “There were moments where I would hit really, really low times and she was the only person who would always pick up the phone. It wasn’t because she had an agenda, it was because she had an ear.
“And actually what I saw in her, I saw in Gemma. She had a compassion, she wanted to understand, and when she said her phone was always on, I knew it was.”