I have a friend ...
She's mainly happy but often sad and sometimes a little bit broken but she pulls herself up and carries on because she has no choice.
Her husband is her rock and, on bad days, she feels she'd be nothing without him. But she knows - in her darkest moments - that if it comes to that, she would have to, once again, pick herself up and carry on. To mix the happy with the sad.
You see, she's watching someone slowly slip away from her - not dying but gradually, almost as if ounce by ounce, become another person on a journey that they can only take for themselves.
It's hard. She feels lonely, frightened, angry, isolated, tired, fed-up and sometimes - just sometimes - a little bit sorry for herself.
Losing someone you love is always hard but when you start to blame yourself - and other people - for their demise, it's unbearable. To the point where it physically hurts.
She asks herself what could she, and those significant others, have done differently? Is it too late to turn back the clock now?
In reality, probably yes.
The damage has been done.
My friend will do what she can, gritting her teeth, allowing silent tears to fall whilst wondering just how it came to this sad and bitter end.
And through all of that, she'll mentally plan an inevitable funeral that won't be a fitting end, surrounded by love and happy feelings that the person she's losing so deserves.
In the meantime, she'll keep on keeping on. With love in her heart, as much patience as she can muster, tiredness in her bones and a little piece of bitterness that will never understand why people can't see what she is seeing.
What would you do?
Asking for a friend ...