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'Mum would have wanted me to have these clothes': how I shopped my way through grief

Life and style | The Guardian

We had always shared the fun of fashion. Now she was dying, I found comfort in silk blouses and glitter platforms

As my mother lay dying on a hospital bed, I went shopping. After long days at her bedside, doing my best to buoy her spirits, helping her sip water from a cup because she was too weak to hold it, after almost daily round-trips from home by rail to that hospital in my old stomping grounds, my shopping urges became fairly frequent. As the toll of her illness and slow painful death overwhelmed me, I shopped, then some more, and then some.

Neither of us knew she was dying at first. My mother was tired and ready, she often told me, to shuffle off at 84. Her body was a bit of a wreck but her brain still worked; she still cared about the cryptic crossword and the state of the Labour party. It encouraged me to hear of her antics during the morning medical catch-ups, and so her death just didn’t fit into my picture, even when a bumbling junior doctor took me aside to tell me she was very ill indeed.

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September 21st 2019, 1:13 am
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