21/11/2016 09:56 GMT | Updated 19/11/2017 05:12 GMT

Losing A Parent


What if I died at 60? My son would be 17. How would he cope?

This really isn't something I've ever wanted to think about, I've still got a 96 year old Grandma - we're made of stern stuff. Until this week when my old dad (not so old actually) was admitted to hospital for emergency heart surgery. He'd had a few pains and had some tests with inconclusive results, in hindsight for too long. Last week he was advised not to fly to Barbados on holiday in 2 days time and was booked into see a consultant instead. I did ask whether the fact he was flying Upper Class and could sleep all the way would help, ah no!

Consultant one day, heart op the next. Yesterday my mum, sister and I sat in his room waiting for his return from the op, we were all anxious and chatted about nothing, whilst all thinking the same thing. I worried about the outcome for mum but also for me and my sister, life without dad - we're not ready to give the grumpy legend up yet. The surgeon said it would have been catastrophic if he hadn't operated, no child at whatever age needs to hear that.

I'm 46 soon and would obviously cope without my dad, not through choice, but it did make me think about how Rockstar would cope without me or his daddy. As I get older I worry about it daily, he's only 2 years old.

When I am my dad's age Rocco will be in his early twenties, he could be just out of Uni, finding his feet, house hunting, girlfriend issues, having all those wonderful experiences that I will want to be part of; whether he likes it or not. How would he cope with parents that aren't fit and well? If I'd had him when I was 20 at least he'd be a 'proper adult' when I'm in my 'later years'.

I wouldn't want him to have the burden of worrying about us if we got sick. He's not here to look after us, we are too look after him. My parents have always been there for us, poorly or not.

This week I have had my sister to lean on, cry and whinge too, work out a plan to look after the folks and support mum. Rocco wouldn't have that, so it made me re-question the whole 'one child' decision, how would he cope in situations like this? The Aunties, Uncles and Cousins would step in, wouldn't they?

So Mr S and I are going to work a bit harder at getting fitter and eating better. We don't know why my dad's heart has given him this scare but I know it's been a wake up call to us all.

Starting on Sunday I'm on a juice diet and digging out those trainers, after I have cried my way through Children in Need tonight and drank a bottle of mulled wine.

My fave wedding pic from Marcus Dodridge Photography