Diana – meditation on courage and thank you
Wednesday 24 April
It is 20 days since Diana died – early on Wednesday 4 April; 15 days since her
funeral. I didn’t see her lie at home; her carers kept vigil. Almost a month since I
saw her – 28 March.
Her funeral was a cold day – clear, crisp and at the internment southerly clouds
scudded across the Diamond Harbour cemetery; the call of the gulls and the cry of the
mourners. All fitting.
Diana was probably the most courageous person I have known. Many people, myself
included, have acted well in face of adversity; have taken risks that others might shy
from. But many of these actions, many risks are assumed without foreknowledge -
in the heat of the moment, as circumstances dictate. For Diana though, her actions
and the risks she took were entered into with full knowledge of the consequences.
She refused drugs to maintain her clarity of mind; she refused institutional care to
maintain her freedom of spirit; she refused idle words of comfort to maintain her
fierce sense of sharpness and morality. Courage, true courage means speaking and
acting in the glare of foresight - knowing the consequences but speaking and acting
nevertheless. Diana showed true courage.
I have just re-read her last few blog entries and this message is for all Diana’s carers,
friends and family who sustained her courage through the days, weeks and years of
her dying. Courage is always contained in a context. Diana’s MS and her community
of carers were the stage and cast for her courage. You supported her independence,
helped maintain her clarity of mind and left the legacy of her stellar writing.
From Diana I learned about courage and I couldn’t have done that without you.