How do you say goodbye to someone forever?

20:54, Feb 28 2013

What would you say to someone if you knew you would never see them again?

It's a question I've thought of theoretically from time to time.

Whenever I go on a long trip I make sure to tell EK I love him before I leave, lest the worst happen while I'm gone.

Of course, I've always come home unscathed and quickly slip back into the routine of leaving the house with a "Can you grab some milk while you're out please?"

But this week I received some horrible news.

My gran has been diagnosed with terminal cancer.


(Isn't it funny how often in these situations we hide behind such clinical language - diagnosed, terminal. Much easier than saying someone we love is dying.)

My gran lives in Auckland and I'm flying up this weekend knowing in all likelihood I will never see her again.

I've never been in a situation like this before. People I know have died but I've never had advanced warning of it before.

Previously it has been sudden and unexpected and you're left dealing with the repercussions afterwards.

How do you say goodbye to someone forever? What words can adequately express to someone all the things you want to say?

I'm not sure there are any, but at least I have the chance to try.

Cancer is cruel and takes away those we love - often before their time - but there's one thing I'm grateful for - the chance to say goodbye.

My gran is a big fan of my blogs and often tells me how proud she is that her grand-daughter is a reporter.

Words usually come to me more easily when I'm writing than speaking, so in case I can't articulate this in person, I'll write it here.

I love you Gran, thank you for everything and I'll do my best to make you proud.

The Press