The next four days are still a bit of a haze to me. People continued to come and go. The sweet aroma of flowers filled every room. Cards were placed on every available surface.
My mind churned over and over. Why? What if? The events of the past weeks, the conversations I had with Barry, the finding of clues that went unnoticed until afterwards. If only…we hadn’t gone on holiday that week; I had been more alert; I had seen the signs beforehand. It was essential that we fit the pieces of the puzzle together, but that’s hard to do when there are pieces missing. We speculated, we grasped at straws, our vivid imaginations made things up. All this left us feeling exhausted and drained.
On top of all these things, I also had an all consuming fear darkening my thoughts. I even had nightmares regarding this fear. Would Daniel follow his brother into death? The garage roller door was left unlocked, because we couldn’t find the key. The fear was so strong that I even left my bed in the early hours of the morning to check the garage. I have no idea what I would have done if I’d found Daniel in there. It doesn’t bare thinking about, but I couldn’t rest easy because of the constant fear nagging at me.
I talked to Daniel about how he was feeling, but I didn’t want to put pressure on him. He had too much on his mind already, without me making matters worse. He had found his brother, so he had an image in his mind that wouldn’t leave him. He also realised that the police suspected him, even if it was only briefly, of murder. I felt the need to get him, and me, to a counsellor. He wasn’t keen, at first, but soon consented to me making the appointments.
On the fourth day, Gary found the garage key. With the garage locked up, and the key hidden, I felt a surge of relief. However, now I believe that I didn’t give my oldest son the credit he deserves. He’s much stronger than I realised. Much stronger. I’m aware that he’s concerned about me…and his father. I know that he is trying to do the right thing by everyone. He had to mature quickly, and whilst I know the depth of his sorrow, I’m so proud of the way he’s handling the situation. I’m proud of him (and yes, I have told him that).
Click here to go to Part 8: Making Plans and Saying Goodbye