Jacob's diary

How can I go on with my world when my boy is no longer here? I wake up everyday and the first thing I do is feel like I can't face the day ahead without my son. I had to keep him alive and the only way I could do that was to make sure he lived his life through my diary. What did he do when he grew up? who did he fall in love with? I was going to give him the life that was taken so he would still be with me.



When I was a child I had spent so many happy summers at the beach. I loved to play in the sand and build sand castles. My mother would always sit and watch me as I found sea shells to press into my sand castle, trying hard not to destroy them in the process. After a long day at the beach we would go and get fish and chips, always tasted so good from the seaside. This was a place of happy memories for me, memories I had wanted to pass along to Jacob.

I sat in my car looking out from the parking area across at the sea. I had so many thoughts running through my mind right now and I wasn't sure if I was finally losing my will to live. I thought that I could just simply get out of the car and walk across that beach into the sea and let it take it me. If I went under those crashing waves would I resurface, baptised of all my pains? Maybe I could just walk along the beach, never looking back until I ended up lost forever. My phone ringing broke me from my thoughts and I looked down to see that it was my mother who was trying so hard to call me.

"Sorry, mum." I said and slipped the phone back into my bag. "I need to be alone."

Darren had tried to call several times as I sat here contemplating what I should do. I turned the key in the ignition and pulled away fast before the call of the sea become so strong that I could no longer resist it. There was a place I had failed to go, maybe I was afraid. It was strange how Darren and I hadn't even talked about this. Since he had been gone we hadn't been the garden of remembrance.

I pulled up outside the church and noticed that the vicar was walking around the grounds. I got out of the car and walked into the grounds. Each side of me were the many graves. I walked down the path and under the big old trees that seemed to almost be shielding the little church. As I got to the old worn wooden door I stopped. A woman was standing by a grave chatting away to the headstone. She was pulling up weeds and tidying the grave. I could see she was a woman in her late fifties. She looked up at me and gave me a small smile, I smiled back.

"I know it seems crazy." She had no sadness in her voice. "It just makes me feel his here."

"It's not crazy." I said to the woman. "I think its good you can do that."

"Do you have a loved one here?" She asked as she packed up her little garden tools.

"My son." I just about got the words out. "I'm not sure why I..."

"Why you came here?" The woman walked over to me. "It hasn't been long has it?"

"No!" I started to sob and the woman took in her frail arms and patted me on the back.

"Let it out! Don't you worry about a thing. Time will heal, I know everyone has told you that but believe me it is true. You don't forget and wont forget, but time brings healing."

"My whole life has come apart. My marriage is over and I don't know where to turn."

The woman took my hand. "I'm not a woman of great faith, but you must reach down inside and find your own faith. You must find that one thing that gets you through the day and then find the thing that gets you through the following day. Sooner or later you will find life has returned to as normal as it can get."

"Thank you." was all I could say.

"Now you go inside and sit with your thoughts. I hope things get better for you." The woman turned and walked away down the path.

It seemed like a whole other world was being played out inside the church. I was alone and the silence was almost forcing me to contemplate my life, churches had a way of doing this I always felt. I looked up at huge wooden cross and for the first time in a long time it wasn't anger that filled my heart but a feeling of being alone. I was in this world but living outside of it. I had put a bubble a great big bubble around me. Tiffany had told me when we had breakfast before work that I needed to burst it or I was going to float to far away from the rest of the world.

The smell of flowers and old books filled this church. I stood up to leave when I noticed the vicar had walked in. He had been standing there for a while I guessed. He nodded to me to let me know it was fine that I was there, in fact I think he was overjoyed someone had been sitting there.

"I was just leaving." I told him.

"Take as long as you need. The house of our lord never closes."

"It is a lovely church. I'm pleased we picked this one."

He smiled. "How are you and your husband?"

How could I lie to a vicar. "Things are... Strained."

He looked sad. "I'm sorry to hear that. I will make sure I mention you both in my prayers."

"Thank you. I'm sorry I should go it is getting late."

"Remember that grief is lived a day at a time. It will not be over in a week or a month. Don't try and rush your healing or you will never truly be healed. May God go with you."

"You too." I left the building and hurried back down the path. The sky had started to get dark.

I sat for a long time in the dark. I had parked my car around the corner from the church, not far from the old folks home. I had watched nurses come and go, patients heading inside as the night closed in. I wondered how much death they had experienced in life? They must have seen so much over the years and they were still here, holding onto the last piece of life they had left. It made me feel guilty and a little ashamed to be sitting here with my thoughts of how hard done by I was. I thought about my mother. She was the only person that I could go to but I had my job here now and I wanted to stay. I didn't know what to do so I got my phone and called my new friend, Tiffany. When she answered I could hear the children in the background.

"Tiffany, I'm sorry to call you but I... I have nowhere to go. I'm sitting in the car and I don't know where to go or what to do."

"Look, I'll text you the address. Come and stay with us. I'm here with the kids and could do with some adult company."

"Thank you." It seemed to be my words for this day. Grateful to so many but feeling alone.


Tiffany's home was far from what I imagined it would be like. It seemed untidy with unwashed clothes scattered throughout and a big pile waiting to face the iron. The wallpaper had peeled in some place, awaiting to be pulled down or repaired. The kitchen was clean but the washing up was piled in the sink. I could see that Tiffany was a little embarrassed. I sat down o the leather sofa, that had a split in the arm as if one of the kids had put a knife through it.

"I'm sorry about the house." Tiffany handed me a cup of tea and sat down opposite me on the arm chair.

"I'm just happy to be somewhere."

"I ask them to help me but I might as well talk to the wall."

"Wont your husband help you?"

"Don't make me laugh, drink and watch television, that is his life."

"Sounds like he needs telling!"

"Nothing would get through to him. The kids run rings around him. He only comes home for his dinner then his off out again!"

"They say a man lives on his stomach!" I laughed.

"Yes, well I'll be pleased when his flat on his back!" We laughed together and I nearly spilt my tea.

"So what are you going to do?" Tiffany placed her tea on the ring stained table.

"I'm not sure, Nothing is right and it is all jumbled in my mind."

"Are you going to face his other woman?"

"What do I say? I'm not sure if talking to her will help any."

"You could just punch the bitch." Tiffany didn't laugh this time, she meant it.

"Then she would have me arrested for assault, that would be all I need."

The thought had crossed my mind and I guess at some point our paths would cross again. Darren had to see her and now more than ever he was going to have to find a job to support them both. I would help him in anyway I could with his meetings but I just couldn't face anything to do with his other child. Even the thought of it in my mind made my feelings boil, another child! Jacob was our world, the only world we needed and now he had gone and created another one. How could I hate someone so much and yet feel like I needed to help them? I wish I had the answer to that but as this moment as I sat drinking tea I felt numb. I was tired and asked if I could go to sleep. Tiffany took me up to her spare room, that was neat and tidy as no one used it.


sara sat holding with a mock model pose. She was trying not to laugh. Jacob's head popped from around the drawing board. He wasn't happy with her and I tried not laugh as I stood in the doorway.

"It's the hat, you need the hat." I said.

"Mother, Don't make her laugh even more. She isn't taking this seriously."

"You have captured the likeness it's like looking at a photograph. Are her teeth really that big?"

"What!" Sara flew from her pose over to look at the picture. She started to laugh when she saw I was teasing her.

"It is perfect!" Sara could see the detail that Jacob had put into this.

"Now you have lost the pose!" He said frustrated.

"She can't sit like that for hours on end." I told him.

"SO unprofessional, I should have hired a model."

"So am I getting paid?" Sara laughed

"No!" said Jacob and pointed back to the chair across the room. "Now sit!"

"Look, he even has the artists temperament!" Sara said to me as she made her way back to the chair.

"I'll make you both something to drink. It looks like you could both do with it."

AS I walked down the stairs I could hear Jacob telling Sara that she wasn't in the right pose as before and Sara telling him that her arm was giving her pain. He told her that every model had to suffer for her art to which she said something that I shall not repeat!

Darren was standing at the kitchen sink washing up some plates from lunch. He asked me what all the laughter had been about. I told him the story and he laughed himself. He had paid for Jacob to attend some art classes. The tutor had told us both that Jacob was one of the best artists that he had ever had in his classes over the years. We both felt so proud of him and his school had told us he would get top marks for art, there wasn't any doubt about it. Everything Jacob would draw or paint I had kept, even little one off sketches he did when he was bored. He told me that he had plans in his mind for a comic book he wanted to write and I knew without a doubt myself that he could pull that off. My boy had gained this skill from my mothers side and the painting he made for her for her birthday of red roses in a vase was in a place of pride on her wall.

"We are going to go out later. I want to pick up some art books from the library." Jacob and Sara  sat down at the kitchen table as I was making the drinks.

"Do you want me to drop you down there?" I asked.

"Thanks." Jacob looked at Sara. " I said I'd treat my willing victim."

"Too right!" Said Sara. "I think my whole body is going to be stiff for months!"

"I think its a fantastic likeness." I smiled at Jacob. "How is the comic book coming along."

"I've got ideas. I want to start sketching the characters out to see what they look like on paper."

"I told him I want to be a super hero!" Sara laughed. "Super --- model!"

We all laughed as I placed the drinks down. "I want to be... Adventure man!" Darren did a pose.

"Well I guess that makes me, Adventure Woman!" I laughed.

"Hang on that makes me, Adventure son!" Jacob didn't like the sound of that.

"I'll be Sara Croft!" We all nearly spat out our tea with laughter. "What!" Sara smiled.

Those moments of us, my family sitting down at the table like that would always live in my heart. I held a deep wish that They too would register on the hearts of Jacob and Sara and that when they spoke to their own children in the future they would also recall how we made each other laugh. That was the art of a real family to be able to tease in a friendly loving way. Nothing could replace these moment, nothing could ever take them away.


I couldn't sleep. I didn't know if it was the fact that I was in a strange bed or if my mind was playing over and over the events of the days gone by. I listened to first drops of rain on the window turn into heavy droplets. The thunder followed and I was sure something out was mocking me. I found my mind drifting off into thought like, I wonder how many droplets are on the window? What if the rain just didn't stop and went on and on for days. I guessed I was trying to run away from all the events my brain was trying to get me to sort out. I was sure of one thing and that was Darren would have to be called. I couldn't put it off for much longer and I wanted to make sure that he wasn't going to miss any of his meetings. I truly didn't want him to slip back into alcohol abuse.  





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