My uncle Andy, celebrating his 70th birthday party in hospital.
(I hope it doesn't disturb anyone, as i'm well aware of the weight he lost over the months and how apparent it is in this photo).
I loved who he was when he was healthy and even more so when he was sick, so to me, he never really changed, regardless of the weight loss. Never in my life have i had the privilege of meeting someone so incredibly selfless. A true old fashioned gentle man.
6 months on and my heart still breaks knowing he's gone and will never be coming back. I don't know how many times i've mentioned him, but it's hard to forget him. When you lose someone so special, you spend your time thinking over how you wish you would have done things differently. Made more of an effort, given more of your time. And although you should live your life with no regrets, it's hard sometimes not to regret the fact that i wasn't there when he passed away.
He lived alone and spent most of his time alone, each birthday, each christmas, and worst of all the majority of his time in hospital he spent alone, watching the clock on the wall and knowing his time was coming to an end. He wasn't ready to go, i remember him saying to me "i wish i could have all my time back, live it all over again". He was one of those people who loved life, every single moment of it.
He never forgot anyones birthday, and you could always expect a phone call on christmas day from him, wishing us all a Merry Christmas. He adored his family, and we adored him too, but unfortunately didn't show him as often as we could have.
In and out of hospital several times, with barely a complaint, and never any self pity. He battled his cancer so courageously until sadly he lost his battle with cancer in July 2011.
To many of you these photos will be just 'an old man in a hospital bed'. But as the saying goes...a photo is worth 1000 words.
Love your life. Love your family. After all, Love is what binds us all together.