Chapter 21 » 21.52


I longed to be told for sure that we (for I was afraid for myself as well as for those I loved) would not die, not really. What I wanted was undeniable proof of the immortality of my personality.

Over the next few years, the fear stayed with me, as the dark side of love. Then my mother died. I felt the expected grief, remorse at my failings as a daughter, anger at illness and waste, and all the many emotions bereavement normally arouses.

But the fear of personal annihilation was met by the knowledge that ‘Death is not the end. Your mother still loves you and you can go on loving her.’ I don’t know how I ‘heard’ those words: there was no vision, no voice, no particular moment or place. I do know that the day after she died, I told my husband what I had ‘heard’.

Anne Hosking, 1980

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