Clayton Thomas James

This week – today the 20th July 2022 marks 2 years without my Bubby, my Claytie! It has passed in the blink of an eye and it has been an eternity with each minute feeling like needles under my skin. There wouldn’t be an hour that goes past that I don’t think of him, speak to him or of him, or remember our life together. Every thing that I do has him at the centre of it. The single hardest thing in my life now, is waking up each morning and getting out of bed facing the world knowing he’s gone. But I do it, and I do it for him… I do it for both of us and for our Boys.

Claytie was absolutely and without a doubt for me, the very best person I have ever known, and I knew it from the day we met. He was funny and generous, silly, sarcastic, kind , intelligent, cynical, loving and so much more. I never had to second guess the solidity of our relationship and what we meant to each other. I am so very grateful to have had nearly 30 amazing years with him and that our boys share so many of his characteristics.

I think almost the day that Claytie died- certainly not long after, I knew that I needed to make a choice about what my life would look like without him here. I could chose to wallow and be miserable and sad – and trust me, I have plenty of those days! Or I could chose to find happiness and do that for both of us. Each day I get out of bed and I say to myself that I need to find something to make me smile, laugh and be grateful about… that’s often a whole lot easier said than done, but it’s important for me to do. It’s my way of honouring Claytie, of keeping him close.

Tonight the Boys and I are having Family Dinner. We will be having his favourite and incredibly passive aggressive thing to cook – Tuna Mornay, or as I call it Catfood Casserole (he used to cook it when he had the shits with me because I hate it, but I would be an idiot to say no to him cooking dinner) along with Iced Coffee – his favourite drink and Pavlova for dessert. It is now a meal we have once a year to remember the day our world changed forever.

I know and often talk about how lucky and privileged we have been, even in this shit show we didn’t ask for, and I really don’t take any of that for granted anymore. We have some really amazing people in our lives that we wouldn’t have if not for Claytie, both before and after he died. They have made our world a much better place. I couldn’t do all of this without them, and thank you doesn’t feel like a big enough word for what they bring into our life.

So today spend a minute thinking about Claytie if you knew him – feel free to share your memories. Think about the important people in your world. Love and let yourself be loved. Do a good deed, take a ton of photos, be kind, smile and make new happy memories Life is incredibly short – live it fully!

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