Simon Thomas has opened up about how he and his son spent their first Mother’s Day without his late wife Gemma, who died suddenly and unexpectedly at the end of last year.
Gemma died of acute Myeloid Leukaemia in November last year. Simon recently went on This Morning to speak about the final days he spent with his wife and the moment he had to tell his son that their beloved wife and mother had passed away.
In an effort to deal with his grief and in the hope that he can help others, the former TV presenter has written a blog called A Grief Shared where he details his journey through the toughest time of his life.
To mark his son’s first Mother’s Day without his mum, Simon shared a picture on Twitter along with the link to his latest blog post, which showed Ethan and his late wife Gemma together.
The post is titled Mother’s Day…without Mum and it began: ‘Seeing your child sobbing uncontrollably is something that is always hard to see and so very hard to deal with, but to see them crying over something you have absolutely no power to change is heart breaking.’
Simon starts by detailing how Ethan had felt unwell on Tuesday but he knew it wasn’t a regular bug. Ethan was deeply upset and after their regular bedtime routine, Simon soon heard Ethan crying uncontrollably.
He wrote: ‘As I lay next to him and held him in my arms all that was reverberating through my mind was this brutal truth – the one thing he craved was the one thing I simply cannot change – I can’t bring his mummy back.’
Simon detailed the tortuous feeling of not being able to give his son the one thing they would both love more than anything.
Gemma’s diagnosis and death was very sudden. She passed away less than a week after going to her GP to complain of feeling unwell. As Simon says: ‘In three short days I went from being a happily married man to a single parent.’
Although it is still too difficult to think of a time when the pain will be easier, Simon is hopeful. He shared a picture on Instagram on Sunday of Ethan with the caption: ‘A weekend away avoiding #mothersday #ledbury’. Further on in the blog post Simon wrote: ‘I hope that on Mothers Day in the years to come we will be remembering Gemma as the wonderful mother, wife, daughter, sister and friend that we’ve lost, but this year it’s still all too raw.’
‘Whilst we will try and remember her for the love that she poured into our lives, we will still remember the way she was torn away from us in such a brutal and cruel manner.’
Simon and Ethan visited a family who invited them to stay at their farm near Ledbury during this difficult weekend.
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They made Mother’s Day into ‘Ethan’s Day’ and were able to finish the day with Ethan smiling.
Simon posted a picture of Ethan in bed snuggled up with a soft toy. The father-of-one captioned the image, ‘We finished the day with a smile and that’s all that matters.’
If you need support after the death of someone close, get help for yourself or for a child through cruse.org.uk