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HRH Queen Elizabeth II

Posted by Caribbean World Magazine on 5 August 2019 | 0 Comments

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5 August 2019

Staying Strong in Grief: Six Weeks After the Loss of Prince Philip

It has been less than six weeks since Prince Philip passed away aged 99, and HRH Queen Elizabeth is still drawing great comfort from countless tributes and condolences from all around the world. Bags of cards, letters and small gifts continue to arrive at the Buckingham Palace post-room each day. She remains in our prayers, our collective hearts breaking when images of her sitting in the pews at her husband’s funeral, depicted her as utterly alone. At that moment, we empathised with her as a wife - not a monarch - a woman who had lost her beloved lifelong companion: a father to four, a grandfather to eight with ten beautiful great-grandchildren. 

The Queen has made no secret of how she has been deeply moved by the “outpouring of love” from so many people after her husband’s death. In the immediate aftermath she admitted that she has found it cathartic to soak up all the well-wishes and tributes to the man she loved unconditionally for countless decades. She is also visited regularly, and called by telephone, by Prince Charles, Prince Andrew, Prince Edward and Countess Sophie who are gently checking in on her to see how she’s doing. Once the funeral - a low key family affair held at the Windsor Castle private chapel - had taken palace, HRH Queen Elizabeth II threw herself straight back into her official duties.  Aged 94, but looking radiant despite the grief, she opened Parliament in a ceremonial role that drew considerable admiration worldwide. The rituals of the British state go on, and nobody knows that better than the Queen who - as always - added her dignity, grace and style to the occasion. It is of course what the worldhas come to expect from Her Majesty, duty above all else.

Philip and Elizabeth, married for more than 70 years and with a close-knit bond,had no doubt discussed the Philip’s poor health and death. She was, according to reports, prepared for the worst and had already contemplated what would happen in a life without him. Her former press secretary, Charles Anson, was certain that she would resolve to remain as steady and as calm as possible, even in her moments of deepest grief and sadness. The Queen’s temperament and her experience equips her for every difficulty - and that her long marriage filled with a great deal of happiness will bring her considerable comfort as she mourns Philip's death.Royal biographers Ingrid Seward and Andrew Morton agree, with the latter suggesting that the Queen likely “anticipated” her husband’s passing, but notes that the pandemic allowed the couple to spend more quality time together than they usually would have - a positive outcome for the couple’s year-long stay at Windsor Castle, who hadn’t spent so much time together since the late 1940s before the Queen acceded to the throne.