For Marc.

For Marc.

For those of you that have followed my blog for a while you’ll be wondering why I haven’t been writing. Many that are friends with me on Facebook will know…

I recently suffered the loss of my partner Marc.

I am writing this as a testament to what a wonderful man Marc was and how the grief has affected me.

I first met Marc through facebook and having mutual friends. Last October I was in North Wales on a solo trip. Marc and I had been in touch on messenger previously just chatting about tattoos and mountains. He contacted me the evening before I was due to leave. He was meeting his friend Glenn to do Moel Siabod. He invited me along. I explained to him in a message that I suffered with anxiety and struggled with meeting people. He reassured me I would be fine and that he’d look after me. I decided just to go home. I left Betws-Y-Coed and headed for the A55. I battled with my head to make myself turn around.. As I got to the A55 the traffic was stationary… I persevered for 20 minutes before turning round at Conwy and headed back to Betws! I checked myself into the Ty Gwyn Hotel. I’d always wanted to stay here as it was my mums favourite hotel.

I messaged Marc to say I would decide if I could come in the morning! I forced my breakfast down feeling sick with anxiety. It was time to leave… I got to the Bryn Glo carpark and sat nervously waiting. Eventually Marc rolled up 20 minutes late! M60 terror!

We instantly hit it off. He (and Glenn) made me feel relaxed. We had such an amazing day. It was just brilliant. I messaged him when I got home to thank him as I was so nervous and he made me feel completely at ease.. He messaged back to say he had also felt nervous, I asked why? He replied – “well you are a rather attractive lady”. I laughed to myself.. 2 nights later I asked what he was up to for the week, he said he was just at home in the evenings with no plans.. I hopped in my car and messaged him when I was at the M61 services on my way to see him!!! He actually thought I was joking until I knocked on his door….His face was a picture. The below picture was taken the next morning.

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The start of something amazing

 

For many years now I have found my peace and happiness in the mountains. They have bought me resolve, contentment, healing, laughter and comfort. In recent months since meeting Marc I got to share some of these nights (and days) with somebody who brought light into my life. We shared sunsets and sunrises in complete happiness. We had snowball fights on top of the mountains. We held hands and gazed up at the stars (finding our star Vega) and watched satellites wheeling across the night sky,  we made wishes when we saw shooting stars. Marc was witness to his fist cloud inversion…All amazing memories..

Since Marc has gone I have been back into the mountains on several occasions for bivvies. The one thing that used to bring me complete happiness has left me feeling sad. I have laid alone in the depths of night staring at the night sky; watching Vega twinkling at me.. Instead of contentment I have found hurt, sadness, grief, loneliness and emptiness.

When Marc was alive I would send him pictures of evenings and mornings, He was there even when he wasn’t. The first person to message me in the morning and the last person to message me at night. It always brought me comfort.

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Loving our adventures

As many know I have always been a bit of a loner and rarely spend nights in the hills with anyone as it helps my anxiety to be alone, but knowing you have someone you love only a message or a call away kept me stable. This was sometimes difficult for Marc but he took it in his stride and was always supportive and loving.

I was lucky I got to spend the best night on the hill ever with him. Mid winter on Swirl How. His first proper wild camp. It was perfect.

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Happy and loved up!
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A perfect night.
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Watching the sun rise together

I often wonder if I will ever feel happy in the mountains again. I guess the trouble is when you meet someone that you connect with you take them to all your favourite and special places. That’s what I did with Marc. On Wetherlam last week I laid on the grass where we pitched our tent only months before. I cried until it hurt, talking to him through the tears and wishing he was still with me.

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Where I lay crying.

I just don’t know how you move forward from this.

We would always start our days going for breakfast at The Meadowdore café in Coniston; I haven’t been able to go here since his passing.

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Waiting for breakfast!

 

Even being at home is tough. The cottage is filled with memories inside and out.. All the plants he bought me in the spring time are now dying as autumn takes hold. You pray for them to stay alive as another piece of him the grasp onto.

I have done quite a bit underground alone and with friends to try to focus my mind, it offers short term relief as you have to be focussed, but even here, when you get off the ropes the memories creep back in. I took Marc to all the areas of Coniston you can access without ropes.

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In Coniston Coppermines

I went to North Wales last week as we both loved it there, I was hoping it might help with the healing process.

We had a holiday here in February. I thought it would be really tough spending 24/7 with somebody but we had a blast. Not a crossed word all week. He thrived on my knowledge of the history of the mines and joined me for a several hour underground trip in Maenofferen Slate Mine. He absolutely loved it. We went up Cnicht; my favourite welsh mountain, we did the snakes and ladders trip at Dinorwic. Every evening returning to our little cottage to snuggle up in front of the fire, content and happy. (with Rum!)

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The cottage

I had every intention of visiting the places we had been together… I lay in my tent crying. I drove home the next morning. The memories were just too painful.

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Trying to keep dry feet in Tilberthwaite Ghyll

 

People keep telling me time heals…. This feels like it will never leave me. I have had some very dark days. Grief takes you to places that you never you imagine your mind will go.

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My man

 

I think that the hardest thing about this is, is that I feel like my future has been taken away. When you’re older you know one of you will sadly leave. When you are both 45 you think you have all the time in the world. You talk about all the things you will do together. The places you want to experience and the adventures you want to share, the climbs you want to do, we wanted to do Corvus on Raven Crag-a route I’ve done several times, I really wanted to have that day with Marc as he would’ve loved it. Holidays that you would plan in front of the fire on wet and windy nights that will now never happen.

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Wetherlam summit.

Where do you go from here? My future is shadowed with a vail of grey that won’t seem to lift. My future was Marc….

He was the funniest and kindest man. We even shared a love of tattoos. He was in awe of mine and I of his. He would lovingly moisturise my dragon (Kada) as I couldn’t reach!

We both understood pain, me with my back and him with his knee and back! We were a right pair after a long day in the mountains.

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Contented.

Since his sad passing I have had the pleasure of meeting his dad, (step) mum and sister Jenny. Malc and Kathy are the most wonderful people. You can see where Marc got his manners, kindness and fantastic sense of humour from, He was simply the most amazing man.. He was clearly a pretty awesome brother too (and uncle).

One real testament to Marc is that I have never heard a bad word said about him. He was loved so much by his friends and family. You couldn’t not like this man. He was kind hearted, hilarious, empathetic and above all loving and patient.

His close friends that he climbed with now have his climbing gear so his spirit will live on in the hills. His oldest friends who I sadly only met after his passing have been lovely. He was loved and respected.

I loved the very bones of him. The saying “You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone” is now etched in my heart. I can honestly say that despite it not all being perfect (as real life never is) I found my match. The person who understood and embraced all my faults.

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Love

I don’t know when I will be able to write properly again. Until I start enjoying the mountains again; which could take a while.

Below are some pictures from our adventures together.

Rest now sweetheart. Until we meet again.

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Happy times.
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He had to climb up everything!
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Love this guy
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Brim Fell.
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Winter in the Coniston Fells

30 thoughts on “For Marc.

  1. Kate just beautiful!!! Hopefully writing your heartfelt story about Mark may help …such a short time together but god girl yous made the most of every opportuntty doing the things you both loved…… thinking of you kate one day at a time me lovely xxx💝

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Kate, that was an awesome tribute to a wonderful man who you saw as your soul mate… His soul will live you for the rest of your life. When you are up in the mountains, his soul will be with you… Please go a enjoy your mountains again and take Marc’s soul with you….
    All the best and love
    Darren xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sometimes words have power and sometimes they are inadequate. Your post has the power but my words are inadequate to express what I felt when I read it. I offer you my best wishes in coping with this tragedy, for the future and my most sincere condolences on your loss.

    Jon

    Liked by 1 person

  4. so sorry to hear of your loss, hope your love of the mountains returns soon

    Remember me when I am gone away,
    Gone far away into the silent land;
    When you can no more hold me by the hand,
    Nor I half turn to go yet turning stay.
    Remember me when no more day by day
    You tell me of our future that you planned:
    Only remember me; you understand
    It will be late to counsel then or pray.
    Yet if you should forget me for a while
    And afterwards remember, do not grieve:
    For if the darkness and corruption leave
    A vestige of the thoughts that once I had,
    Better by far you should forget and smile
    Than that you should remember and be sad.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. In these kind of situations, or should I say, when things feel they can become no worse, I find it helpful to just go out and do something positive, visit a new area, try a new route, camp somewhere I’ve never been, they, blog it, writing is one of the best medicines, that way, all the hurt can flow out through the pen, at least, if it doesn’t, for me, it always helps, you never know?

    Like

  6. Wonderful words Kate as always, however the circumstances are very different. Memories will never leave you and they should be your dynamo (I write these words on the eve of my sons birthday, sadly taken 25 years ago). My deepest condolences Kate, do what you do best, try to keep positive, but for sure never let your wonderful memories fade. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Cherish your wonderful memories Kate, they’ll be yours forever. You will find the strength to go back to your favourite places and to continue with your blog. You are a very brave lady and sharing your pain can only help the healing process.

    RiP Marc. My condolences Kate. x x x

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Wish I could do your blog justice Kate.
    We love you for your faults and ‘isms’, you are unique. We haven’t known you long but stand by helpless, wishing you well and sending you prayers and a lot of virtual hugs. I hope your love for the mountains returns and that you eventually feel the peace of having made memories with Marc.
    Just put one foot in front of the other. He will always be with you.
    Ali xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Kate, please accept my deepest condolences for yourself and Marc’s family. Kate, you are strong and you have some awesome friend’s, I’m sure they won’t mind me telling you to use them to help you through this terrible tragedy.
    Marc would have wanted you to carry on the good work I’m sure girl.
    Smudge x

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I just don’t have the words to describe how I feel having read this – other than I really feel for you. I’ll come back when your beautiful words have sunk in.
    I can only try to imagine your grief. Your fans and friends ( you have more than you’ll ever know) are there for you.
    JJ

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Oh Kate, I’ve sat here for over an hour, trying to find the right words, but it all just seems so very inadequate. Truly, my heart hurts for your loss. Thank you for bearing your soul so honestly. You have brought both Marc and yourself into my life with your words. Please know that you’re in my thoughts, and I’m sending you love and light for the darkness you’re in right now. Sue xx

    Liked by 1 person

  12. My partner lost his girlfriend in a tragic accident when he was in his early twenties ( he’s 51 now) They had an 18 month old son together at the time.We have always talked lots about her, and that day, over the years, and her name and memory is still a big part of our lives. I’ve experienced the devastation through him. We live not far from Betws y coed, if ever you need someone to listen. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Beautiful words and memories Kate. So so sad to hear of Marc’s passing but he will always be with you in spirit. Be gentle and kind to yourself and know that you are in all our thoughts. Xx

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Try to stay strong Katie.. Time will bring you happiness & peace again on the mountains & underground.. You taught me that Miss Tyler & it does. I can’t imagine how you feel right now but you will get through this & find happiness again.. Take care Katie & don’t forget you’re an amazing, beautiful & special woman with many life adventures still to come. Dom x

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Well written kate,hard words to write i can’t imagine just how hard, but all though its said a lot….time will ease your pains and heart….. Hope to help you through a night on the fells sometime soon …….good to finally meet you the other day ….safe travels Peter and Oscar dog

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Kate, I’ve read your blog posts with interest, but I didn’t know about Marc until today. I’ve never met you, and I’d never met Marc, but your happiness shone through. I don’t feel I can offer suitable words of comfort because I simply don’t know you well enough. However, years ago I came across this poem which I think offers some comfort and shows a way to see things. It does have a religious twist (the writer was a vicar), but I do think it’s very helpful – and I speak as someone who lost his father when he was seven (my mother, who always refused to look for anyone else died a few years ago, about 46 years after my dad.) I hope it does give you a little comfort and I do hope that time does help to heal the grief a little.

    Death is nothing at all.
    I have only slipped away to the next room.
    I am I and you are you.
    Whatever we were to each other,
    That, we still are.

    Call me by my old familiar name.
    Speak to me in the easy way
    which you always used.
    Put no difference into your tone.
    Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

    Laugh as we always laughed
    at the little jokes we enjoyed together.
    Play, smile, think of me. Pray for me.
    Let my name be ever the household word
    that it always was.
    Let it be spoken without effect.
    Without the trace of a shadow on it.

    Life means all that it ever meant.
    It is the same that it ever was.
    There is absolute unbroken continuity.
    Why should I be out of mind
    because I am out of sight?

    I am but waiting for you.
    For an interval.
    Somewhere. Very near.
    Just around the corner.

    All is well.

    Nothing is past; nothing is lost. One brief moment and all will be as it was before only better, infinitely happier and forever we will all be one together with Christ.

    Henry Scott Holland

    Liked by 1 person

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