We received this email – completely out of the blue. If we ever need to be reminded of why we are doing this it’s all here. All I have done is remove the names…

I don’t know if you remember my family and I, but you did our mum’s () service for us last year.

Actually, it is a year ago tomorrow.

I wanted to say a huge thank you for making the service perfect, your kind words and all of your help dealing with our situation. (You gave lots of good advice to us about families living with an alcoholic, supportive words about staying strong as a family and gave us a little push to seek out contact with our youngest siblings, J and L).

A year on we are all doing well, our lives have changed for the better; we () now have close relationships with J and L (who we had very little contact with as they were in foster care). J moved out of foster care not long after Mum’s funeral and L was asked to leave. He stays with me regularly when he’s not in college. J and I have become very close too, we even got to take her out for her first legal drink(s) when she turned 18 recently. The best part is we all speak pretty much every day. We regularly all meet, visit the woods where mum’s ashes are and just hang out, doing normal things normal families would do.

Ben took losing Mum the hardest, but has recently moved in with me and found his way again. C is having a baby (it’s a girl and they’re having her middle name as …), … is excited to be a big sister.

I know this is probably a strange email to receive, but the things you said to us at a time where everything was so hard (and looking a bit bleak) have really stuck with me. Especially fighting to have our youngest siblings in our lives.

So, I would like to again say a huge thank you to you for being so supportive during that time and to know that you did make a difference to our little family.

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