1 Oct

You are all wonderful. Yes, you do all cheer us up. 

Because Rosie was generally so happy, we decided not to spend much time being sad with her. After all, we had plenty of time to be sad later. So some days it feels like we’ve got double/quadruple/centuple sadness to deal with. And this morning was one of those mornings, for me at least.  I hadn’t been prepared at all for the roller coaster of emotions – happily buttering toast one minute, catch sight of Rosie’s pot of jam, fall apart, 20 minutes later incandescently angry at the unfairness of it all;  half an hour beyond that chatting contentedly to the herd of black cows with a flash of yellow ear tags waiting for us when we go to check how Rosie’s grave is looking. I thought you felt the same all the time and gradually it changed. Silly, really.

So, you have all been busy – posting links, finding knock on effects we can create and revealing previous Blue Peter talents. So . . .

Barbara – here is the link to the photos of our celebration of Rosie, in case you didn’t get it from the links Celia and Lin posted:

Just click on the dots under the pictures. If that doesn’t work, let us know, as the Citizen have very kindly provided us with the photos too.

Now, who feels like creating a virtual knock on effect for Hope Support Services in Ross on Wye?  You do? Good. Go on down to and vote for Hope Support Services in Ross on Wye. They are in the Education and Young People section. How good would it be if between us we got them £6000. They are one of Rosie’s favourites (possibly her top favourite). Spread the word to everyone you know too. And thanks Jill for doing that search.

I’ve had a quick look to see if there are any other projects to vote for which would get the TKOE thumbs up. OK,  I got irritated with the site – so I think the other two votes can be free votes for whoever you want. Unless, of course, you find something so TKOEish – organisations that help family and friends affected by cancer – that you pass on the word to all of us. And then we can try and get a double or treble knock on effect.

And the last link I’ve got is for the fabulous and brilliant poet, Tony Walsh.  We are cooking up with him the best way to make A Poem for Rosie available, and I think you’ll approve. You can find out more about him and get hold of more of his work if you take a little trip along to

Gruntley, Rosie’s teddy is now wearing the Blue Peter badge, with pride.



36 Responses to “Sad”

  1. celia butler October 1, 2011 at 6:23 pm #

    Jo – what you’re describing is completely normal grief, especially in these early days. It’s often the unexpected things that are the triggers and probably always will be.( I remember sobbing in the street at the sight of Oxo flavoured crisps in a shop window several years after my nan died – because she always used to give them to me as a child.) It’s also that thing of life in general going on as ‘normal’ all around you when your own life certainly feels anything but normal.
    One day at a time. You’re all doing brilliantly, just let the feelings happen as they will and be very kind to yourselves. If nothing else you must be physically and emotionally exhausted from months and years of anxiety and caring and you’ll need time just to pick up from that. Thinking of you all the time, sending love to you all. x

    • Deb Walker October 1, 2011 at 7:38 pm #

      Echoing Celia’s comments …..

      Hugs and love to you all,
      Deb and gang xxxxxxxxxxx

  2. Alison October 1, 2011 at 6:27 pm #

    What Celia says, I know we don’t know each other but sending you big hugs from Somerset. Look after yourself and each other and let those emotions flow.

    Ali xx

  3. jill Clayton October 1, 2011 at 6:27 pm #

    Hi Jo, I’m so glad you like the idea of the natwest thing. UNfortunately, your link doesn’t work. The “www” needs to be replaced by https.
    I’m hoping that whatever gremlin eats my posts with web references will be fooled by its being in bits!

    • Rosie's mum October 1, 2011 at 6:58 pm #


  4. barbara October 1, 2011 at 6:55 pm #

    Jo.Thanks for the link.You certainly gave Rosie a great send off.You must all be so exhausted.My sister in law died aged 32 leaving three children aged 9,6 and 3.When she died we felt relief that her suffering was over but this was quickly replaced by anger,anger that this could happen so someone so young and with much of life in front of her.You must be feeling exactly the same.You just have to take it one day at a time.For a long time you will be up and down,fine one minute,in floods of tears the next.There would be something wrong if it wasn’t like that.Although i never met Rosie I felt I kind of knew her through her blog.Please keep in touch with us though the blog.

  5. chloe October 1, 2011 at 8:52 pm #

    Jo , I’ve never posted before although I’ve read Rosie’s blogs,everyone of them , for a year or so.I have never admired anyone so much for their courage and I often felt that had I been in the same position I would have crawled under the duvet and never come out.
    The jam pot being a trigger made me want to tell you that on the day of Rosie’s funeral I painted my nails as my ‘flash of colour’, and in the last week everytime I felt I couldn’t or didn’t want to do something I caught sight of those nails,thought of Rosie,and just buckled down and got on with things.Such was her impact on someone twice ( and a bit more !)her age.My thoughts and best wishes are with you.

  6. anita Connah's mam October 1, 2011 at 9:55 pm #

    My thoughts are with you all, its not easy, having experienced the passing of my mum, dad, brother nephew and dear friends, (not at the same time) friends family humour hugs and love get you through. A dear friend who arranged her own send off said I have not gone, you just can’t see or touch me, she was into orbs and put me onto Diana Cooper,3 years later we celebrated her 40th birthday as if she was there, a massive orb was caught on camera right over her cake.

  7. carol lewis October 1, 2011 at 10:37 pm #

    Jo, you are so brave but all these feelings are a natural grieving process just go with it, I can not imagine what you are going through now and I hope I never have to, as we never expect to bury our children it should be the other way round, Just take each day as it comes & get through it as best you can, one thing that is a positive is Rosie was an amazingly brave & strong girl which is only down to the family she was born & brought up in. Be proud & strong. xx

  8. Debbie October 2, 2011 at 7:39 am #

    You are in my thoughts all the time, and I am so glad you are keeping up the blog so that we can all give what little support we can. After all, the intention of TKOE was to help family and friends affected by cancer, and doing our bit to help you in the aftermath is absolutely part of that. Not that we can do much. But maybe it helps to know that we are thinking of you. With compassion, of course, but also sheer admiration!

    I have never personally experienced anything approaching what you must be going through. But I do have close friends who have lost partners, and they too spoke of being fine one minute, and then a wave of overwhelming sadness would overtake them. Often completely unprovoked.

    Someone who lost his wife recently a long battle with cancer said, ‘well at least the illness gave us time to do our grieving together’. Well you didn’t do that with Rosie did you? And I have no doubt that she was so happy most of the time because you two were so cheerful. Another example of the knock on effect!

    I have voted for Hope. The website is very frustrating so anyone doing the same, please persevere. The weather this weekend is simply superb. Being out in the sunshine, maybe having a long walk or doing some gardening is always therapeutic.

    Much love xxx

  9. Debbie October 2, 2011 at 7:45 am #

    By the way, what exactly did you chat to the cows about? Did they engage in conversation too? I am now beginning to wonder whether this is the more relevant part of your post, and where concern should be focussed!! x

  10. Lucy and russ October 2, 2011 at 8:57 am #

    I’m sure it’s normal, it comes in waves. You can feel perfectly normal, having a lovely time doing something or other and then, like I was, sat on beach in Portugal surrounded by people singing Country Road by John Denver (along to the beach band?!) with tears streaming down my face, perfectly hidden by my sunglasses. Mum used to play his stuff constantly when we were kids and I’m sure she would have been amused – and then you smile again with the memory. X

  11. Georgina October 2, 2011 at 9:13 am #

    AAAWwwwwwwwwww darling – what you are all experiencing is totally normal. Winston’s Wish describe it as ‘puddle hopping’ there are times where life feels reasonably normal, then a smell or some music or a sight of something sets you off – the first year is the worst.

    Your life has changed for ever but you have many friends who will help you on this journey and I personally recommend Winston’s Wish organisation – they really helped us.

    Take one day at a time.

    Big hug and much love to you all from sunny Turkey – Georgina xxx

  12. celia butler October 2, 2011 at 9:31 am #

    Could someone who’s managed to vote give a step by step guide to how to find the Hope project please?
    I’ve put in everything I can think under various combinations of its name and Ross on Wye but still can’t get it. Very frustrating. Is there an award for the least user friendly website ever….?
    Thanks in advance!

  13. Helen & Harrie October 2, 2011 at 10:02 am #

    Perhaps that favourite saying of ours over the last few years should be changed from, one day at a time to one hour at a time. You guys have all been throu so much over the past few years let alone the past few months, a permanent rollercoaster. Give yourselves some time and space and remember we are all here for you to give you lots of support when you need it. Sending you my love and a big HUG xxx

  14. Trudy Robertson October 2, 2011 at 10:33 am #

    Right Celia the only way that i voted, was to log in and give your name and email address then go on to the page with the names on the left click on education and youth then go onto the map and go to Ross on wye area and click on the hand or ballon and it will give you a box that says a little about them ( there are two in ross ones a glof course i think),then click to find out more,then you get a bigger box with all their info then on that page there is a vote that and i think thats it.hope you get through.

    • jill Clayton October 2, 2011 at 10:46 am #

      Trudy obviously managed better than I did! If it doesn’t work for you, try the following!

      Type Natwest community force into Google
      On screen
      Vote for a project now
      Category (children & young people)
      Area Scroll almost to the bottom, South Welsh Borders
      Nothing will happen
      Go up to the top of the screen and click list
      The screen will show the projects
      HOPE is at the top of the 3rd screen.
      Click on Vote For Us
      Then you only have to register & Vote!

      • celia butler October 2, 2011 at 1:52 pm #

        Thank you Jill and Trudy- vote duly registered.I knew I could count on more competent readers than me for the solution.
        Jill’s routine was the one that worked for me BUT I found that you must register before you vote. If you register during the voting process.the vote isn’t recorded (luckily I went back to check).
        The website is so dire!
        But to all TKOE blog followers – mine was the 85th vote.
        We know the website gets thousands of hits a day, so despite the frustrations – please everyone follow the steps above and support this charity that Rosie liked so much.
        Hope to see it up into the hundreds (thousands?) very soon – thank you!

  15. Trudy Robertson October 2, 2011 at 10:38 am #

    Oh by the way Jo let all those feeling go where they want too.Right i will let you know where i went with my TKOE T-shirt!/profile.php?id=1380514906 hope this link works

  16. Dollydimple October 2, 2011 at 11:17 am #

    Wow Trudy, nobody would trouble you with road rage if you were in one of those things – I’ll have the pink one! Had more luck with looking at your photos than I did with voting for Hope Support – what an infuriating website, don’t think they could make it less user friendly if they tried. Grrrr!
    Jo, your emotions are normal and it’s really reassuring to read that this is how you are feeling – unpleasant as it is, it is necessary and healthy. As others have said, it is the smallest and silliest things that catch you unaware. Go with it and be kind to yourself.
    lots of love x

  17. margaret crisp October 2, 2011 at 11:52 am #

    Hi Jo, thankyou for sharing your emotions with us. Like someone said earlier, Winston’s Wish may be a name to contact – I am sure Sylvie, Calum, Toby and Chris will be going through exactly the same feelings as you, probably not wanting to say as they want to appear ‘strong.’ Winston’s Wish may well be able to help the whole family, so please get in touch with them….
    A heatwave here, just as there is in UK, and we’ve been lucky enough(!!!) to have a rave two miles away with 15 different sound centres, playing continually over the last 48 hours………..10,000 ravers present.
    I went up to the village on my bike yesterday, up hill all the way, without stopping – first time after my knee incident!
    Thinking of you lots…mags.

  18. Helen October 2, 2011 at 12:37 pm #

    Glad we cheer you up 🙂 it all must be so hard I can’t imagine so I know everyone thinks you are amazing.

    During my loss I was told this. The grief you feel is, for example, a black circle. Right now that black circle feels like it is your life. However, things will naturally happen in your life (work, family, friends etc.), and a white circle of these things will begin to grow & grow & grow around that black circle. Because the white circle has grown around it, the black circle (the grief) will gradually feel smaller, even though it is actually the same size as it was.

    I hope that makes some sense to you as it did to me. It made me not feel guilty (although nobody ever should) about getting on with your life. Because, the love/grief/remembrance for Rosie will always remain the same, you may just feel it certain times more than others depending on events (big like a birthday, or small like a jam jar), which is fine and 100% normal.

    Will be on that link right away. Also, I agree with others about Winston’s Wish..brilliant especially for Rosie’s sister perhaps. At Christmas time there is a tree in Regent Arcade upstairs and you can write on a star for a loved one you have lost and it gets put on the tree. Really lovely, something to bear in mind for a few months time maybe.

    🙂 x

  19. Michelle October 2, 2011 at 6:01 pm #

    Hi Jo
    I’d echo what everyone has said here about grieving. And bizarrely, after 12 years, I still miss my Dad and things can set me off and trigger me into tears. But that I suppose is life and love.
    I’m not sure if I can vote for the Hope project – can someone enlighten me please? I don’t live in the area so can i still vote.
    Mic – up in the highland at the moment 🙂

    • Lin October 2, 2011 at 6:31 pm #

      You sure can….I’ve got people in Newcastle, the US and New Zealand voting!!!!!

    • Lin October 2, 2011 at 6:33 pm #

      You know what?? I spend wayyyy too long with Americans!! “You sure can”???? “the US”???…..good grief….
      Waves at Mic

      • Michelle October 3, 2011 at 4:44 pm #

        Hi y’all 🙂
        I’m typing this whilst watching red squirrels. Will maybe put some photos on my Flikr pages for you to look at 🙂
        Will get and vote then, and also get hubby to do so to, and all at work.
        Back to the squirrels, and I have to go put some food out for the pine martens. Such a hard life.
        Not seen any otters yet though 😦
        Waving back to you Lin
        Mic x

  20. Pip Armstrong October 2, 2011 at 8:46 pm #

    Grief is weird and it affects everybody in completely different and often surprising ways. I’m sure that you all have crate loads of bottled up emotion,the more jam pots you can come across the better cos it’s much better out than in x

  21. Jonquil October 3, 2011 at 8:22 am #

    Hi Jo and all the family

    Yes, Celia and co are absolutely right. Some of the literature makes it sound like the “grieving process” (ugh) is orderly, and you go from one stage to the next. But of course, it isn’t a bit like that, and you are all in any case very early on. Cows (and any other animals who happen to be handy) are great – they are non-judgemental, never offended and can keep a secret. I also find bread making good for angry times – you can take it out on the dough, which is actually better for it!

    Love to you all

    • jill Clayton October 3, 2011 at 11:13 am #

      Thanks Celia, THere was I thinking that the acknowledgement e-mail meant I’d voted. I had to log-in first and go through it all again. There are now 104 votes. I must get Newent Rotary on it!

      • jill Clayton October 3, 2011 at 11:14 am #

        By the way, looking at the website – I thought the banks were supposed to be efficient now. No wonder RBS crashed!

  22. Robin October 3, 2011 at 12:18 pm #

    grief is as someone has already said, wierd indeed. I doubt Rosie would allow you to be sad when she was around so you must have a lot bottled up to get through now.

    Don’t rush it, be sad for as long as you need to be. It is so nice that you are writing here, for you and for us. It is probably good therapy to just write down how you feel and let it all out.

    Im terrible at this sort of thing or knowing what to say, I have not the ability to make anything better for anybody with words, but please know that I think about Rosie so often, and I will never forget her attitude towards life in general and in particular her own situation. It will always help me when things don’t go right, I will always remember her and how she dealt with stuff that I can never even contemplate. She touched me that deeply.

    She was amazing.

  23. Claire October 3, 2011 at 2:19 pm #

    I agree about the ‘process’ description of grief being misleading, it’s more like a pudding. It’s scary if you expect anything in particular, but I think the worst feeling of all is that you’ll be stuck in one of those lowest moments forever. That’s when the helplines come into their own, and the really specific ones are best i think, because if someone who looks like a normal human being says ‘I know how you feel’, & you know they’ve had a similar loss, you believe you can cope one day.
    A friend who lost his wife a couple of months ago said he was making breakfast about 3 days after her funeral, & suddenly realised he was just thinking about what he was going to do that day, & thought ‘oh, is that it?’. Later that day he was flat on the floor weeping.
    As everyone says, all normal, all ghastly.
    As mum, you probably feel responsible for handling everyone elses grief too, but i think you have to have your own quota of black moments too. Another friend who lost her husband young said she took the dogs out every morning at 6am, sobbed & walked for 2 hours & reckons it wrung her tear ducts dry for the day.
    I like the layers analogy of grief, & I’ll add to it if I may. Pearls & abscesses are formed much the same way as each other, & that grief at the center of your future surviving self can become utterly precious so that you can revisit it without fear, or continue to be poisonous & dangerous. Rosie has to be a pearl, i’m sure.

  24. dawn October 3, 2011 at 3:06 pm #

    Oh Jo…I do hope you told those wonderful black cows with their flashes of colour (obviously in honour of Rosie) all about it! Don’t worry about overburdening them with your grief because they can take it, really :-). On a more serious note, I can’t imagine things would be any different to what you are experiencing. You are talking about how you feel and that is the important bit. Warts n all, hey. More cake due soon?!
    My vote is duely registered, though better to register first I now find!
    My thoughts to you all.
    Soak up some of that sunny warmth… Will help you feel a little better.
    dawn x

  25. jill Clayton October 3, 2011 at 4:26 pm #

    I’ve just checked the voting numbers. Hope currently has 113 votes and our nearest rival (Hereford Sea Cadets) has 68.
    As Dawn and Celia said, it is important to register first!
    My own problems with bereavement have been when I forgot about it. I still catch sight of my father in the street and he’s been dead 17 years.
    I’ve amended my guide to the Natwest. and will post it again if people would like.
    You suggested there might be another anti-cancer charity, Jo. In the health category in our region, there is the Haven Breast Cancer charity in Hereford which currently has 66 votes.
    It says it “offers a free programme of in-depth support to improve the quality of life of anyone affected by breast cancer, breathing life back into their lives and helping them regain their confidence,”

  26. Helen October 3, 2011 at 7:37 pm #

    I’m sorry that you’re having a bit of a hard time at the moment. I’m sure Rosie wouldn’t mind you being upset sometimes, as long as you remember her happily too.

    I’ve voted for Hope and will also go back and vote for the Haven Breast Cancer charity as that is another deserving cause….Done.

    Thank you for keeping the blog going and letting us know what is going on with TKOE.


  27. April Hadfield October 4, 2011 at 1:05 pm #

    Thinking of you all.

    Hi, I work for Hope Support Services in Ross, and we’re all just so touched that you’ve mentioned us. :]

    Thank you so much.

    The £6,000 will mean we can provide more consistent and widespread support for the children and young people that are going through a family health crisis.

    Votes mean we’re in with a chance of getting the money… with that money we could organise memorable trips and activities and we have exciting plans to provide courses for Hope’s young people that will provide vital life skills and steps towards employment.

    Here’s a direct link to the Hope page on the NatWest site:

    And, if you have facebook, here’s some easy instructions on exactly how to vote:

    We’re really grateful for the mention, Jo, your support means so much to us. SammyJay’s been chatting a lot about Foxes Academy – she’s so excited about Cal applying!!

    We’re all thinking of you guys lots.
    Love the fact that you’re still blogging Jo. :]

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