10 Years.

Writing has always helped me to feel better. As a teenager I would buy notebooks and empty my head on to all the blank pages. It was my personal therapy. I always felt like my mind was too full and the best thing for me to do, to quiet the noise, would be to grab a pen and a bit of paper. I never knew that this habit would continue in my future, and those notebooks would be replaced by this blog. I have so many posts saved in my drafts, just about my feelings, I just never hit publish. I’m not sure if the post I am about to write down will remain in my drafts or not, I’m still undecided on that.


I woke up this morning, on August 10th 2017, with a heavy heart. As I sit here typing now, right now, I feel like someone is sat on my chest. My hands are shaking and I have a lump in my throat. Today marks a very important day in my life, and I feel like I am near enough ready to talk about what happened to me and my family ten  years ago, with you.

 

10 years ago, my best friend, my Dad. He was killed in front of my very eyes.

 

I am not going to talk about how it happened, I have done that over and over with journalists, policemen, therapists and family. I really do not need to discuss the details. Just know I would not wish what happened to me and my family on anyone.

Sorry I just need a minute. 

 

It still feels like yesterday. I have moments where I wake up and believe it or not, forget that my Dad is not here anymore. Even 10 years on. I miss him more than words could ever say.


 

My mum and my sisters are the strongest set of women I know. It is my honour to call these ladies my family. We all have our own way of coping with what happened, and I wanted to share with you my personal way of dealing with the loss of a loved one. You cannot go onto YouTube and type in “How to deal with losing a family member to murder” and get all the answers. It does not work like that. And, for that matter, my way of getting out of bed every day, may not be the answer you are looking for either. Just do you.

 

I didn’t cry when I found out the news. I remember feeling like a hot fire had lit inside me. I was angry. I held onto the anger and used it to gather strength to be there for my family. I got up out of my bed when my mum didn’t. I forced my sister to shower when she hadn’t in around two weeks. For those first three years, it was like we were all zombies. A shell of a former happy family. I was angry for a very, very, very long time. I may have got out of bed, but it wasn’t me waking up. It was just my body on autopilot, and my soul had gone into hiding. My mum said the sparkle had gone from my eyes, and it really had.

Anger does not heal. Love heals. 

When everything happened, we received so many cards and letters of support. One in particular has stayed with me. An 80 year old lady wrote a letter, and with this letter was a book. The Secret. 

Now ten years ago, I had never heard of this book. I had no idea how much strength it would give me. Fast forward to present day, everyone is familiar with this, the law of attraction and the power of positive thinking. I am so grateful for this book because without it, I would have stayed in a very dark place. Now, it did not take the pain away, but it made me see life a little clearer. The fog that was clouding me, was lighter.

It was simple really. I had two choices. 

To sit in my bed, every single day. And feel sorry for myself.

or

Get up and make a life that my Dad would be proud of. 

When you lose someone you love, do not let it become you. You are more than that. You are not alone. You have the world at your feet. There will always be forces of evil, but there is so much good around us, so much love. That is all you need to remember.

Bad things happen to good people. EVERYWHERE. If I were to ever switch on the news (which I don’t because I hate to see what goes on) terrible, saddening things happen each and every single day. This is just how the world goes round. It does not mean life is not also wonderful. LIFE IS FOR LIVING.

I reminded myself each and every single day, that I am so very fortunate, so blessed to be here. And, slowly, over time, a little piece of my soul came back.

Now. I am happier than ever. I am living an amazing lifestyle here in Ibiza, I have loved ones around me and a roof over my head. I have a pretty wicked job and a career I am beginning to become proud of. And you know what, my Dad would be proud of me too.


If you have lost someone, or are friends with someone grieving for the loss of a loved one(s). Make yourself or them this promise. Life does begin again. You will get through the pain, even though you never forget. Surround yourself in love.

Lots of love to you all. Thank you for reading.

  • What a brave and heartfelt post Zoe. What you all went through is unimaginable for most people and I’m pleased you have found happiness again. Steph xxx

  • Both standing to applaud this post and leap through the internet stratosphere to give you a hug! There’s no words for a tragedy like that..The way you’ve evolved and developed perspective is commendable. Really appreciate you taking the time to write this post – which I’m sure was very nerve-racking to hit the ‘publish’ button. Sending love!

  • Lizzy

    You are so strong. Thank you for sharing xx

  • My heart is with you Zoe. This is such a brave post to write xx

  • Love you xxxxx

  • Lets Talk Beauty

    Absolutely heartbreaking Zoe, what a tragedy to have to overcome. To not let the angry consume you must have been so hard at times but you’ve shown incredible strength and determination. You made positive choices in a very dark situation and I’m in awe of your bravery. Much love & happiness to you xxxx

  • I can’t believe it has been ten years and yes he will be proud of you and the choices you have made makes me proud of you too x

  • My heart and prayers go out to you for being as strong of a woman as you are. This is the first post I’ve found and read of yours via Lydia Millen’s twitter and wow. You are so talented, keep doing what you’re doing, you’re so inspiring.

    Jada x
    http://www.jantelle.com

  • You are SO SO SO strong that you are able to write this down, so inspiring!
    And I completely agree with the last bit; “you will get trough the pain, even though you will never forget.”
    Such an amazing, inspiring post, lover reading it.
    All the love, Joanne
    Xx

  • beautybythebunny

    It’s just clicked with me who your Dad was. Sending you all my love sweetheart. xxx

  • Eddie Jackson

    My thoughts at this time of year are for Garry, you and your Sisters and the rest of Our Family. Still miss his Cheeky Smile……XXXXXX

  • Zoe, you are so strong. I cried for you, reading this post. I’m so sorry that this happened and that your father was taken from you so soon. I think he would be proud of the life you’re living now. You are so brave.

  • Jen Flower

    wow, that took guts <3

    In tears reading this, so beautifully written. Lots of love x

  • Hi my lovely bambi! I’m so glad you shared this with us and finally got the strength to write about it. You are so strong and brave and so are all the amazing women in your family! Can’t wait to see you soon whether in Ibiza or Essex! x