End of an era

This is not about gear, not about films, not about learning…purely a post about something profoundly sad that happened to me today. My beloved Grandma Sarah Bloom passed away after a short illness. My Nana was very special to me, as were all my grandparents. She was my last surviving grandparent and I am devastated that she is gone. They were part of an era who went through so much, specifically World War II.

She was a wonderful woman who I obviously knew all my life. I wish I was back home with my dad right now to give him a big hug as I know he is feeling utterly empty.

With all of my grandparents now passed away it really feels like a massive part of my life has gone. I miss them all so much and like everyone at times like these wish I had spent more time with them, but as our lives get busier we find it harder and harder to see the ones we care about, never a good thing. I knew when my dad phoned me at 10pm his time what he was going to say. We have expecting this for a while but it is never the less deeply shocking when it actually happens. She lived a full life all the way to 90 and she went peacefully so I cannot be sad about that, just the end of an era.

I have wonderful memories of my Nana and will remember her will such love for the rest of my life. Can’t believe she is gone. Treasure your family and friends and savour every moment with them.

Thanks so much for the wonderful comments below. Means a lot to me and I will make sure Dad reads them too, He will be touched.

This is her with my dad on her last birthday in April this year.

and with my beautiful nephew and niece.

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150 comments

  1. May she rest in peace, I am sure she had a great life and she will long continue to live in your life and knowledge. So sorry for your loss, sorry I also missed the meet up in St Pete, but its busy here. Good luck Phil.

  2. so sorry for your loss, philip. grandparents are a wonderful wealth of knowledge and life experiences and i agree with you that we should all spend more time with ours.

    it’s obvious you and your family loved her dearly.

    i will be seeing my 87 yr. old grandparents next month, and as they’ve gotten older, i’ve cherished each visit a little bit more. i’m very blessed to have them still in my life.

  3. Hey Philip,

    Sorry for the loss of your Nana. I lost my first grandparent just last year. My Grandmother was 85 and died of a lung illness. We too knew it was coming and watched her health quickly deteriorate. It was tough to see her go.

    I have the fondest memories of her. Growing up I spent time doing so many creative things with her. She taught me to appreciate the arts and helped me develop my own creative skills.

    My prayers are with you and your family.

  4. I’m sorry Philip, I know it is very difficult what is happening, I went through the same thing last year with the death of my mother, I learned a lot from you in filming and cinematography and everything related to our career, is time to praise for you & your family to receive peace in this difficult time, we are with you from Puerto Rico.

    God bless you

    Angel Castro

  5. I’m sorry Philip, I know it is very difficult what is happening, I went through the same thing last year with the death of my mother, I learned a lot from you in filming and cinematography and everything related to our career, is time to pray for you & your family to receive peace in this difficult time, we are with you from Puerto Rico.

    God bless you

    Angel Castro

    Sorry mi english i use a translator, the correct word is pray, in first post i use praise word, sorry, is pray.

    receive peace…

  6. Hi Philip, Very nice post about a life obviously well lived. Made me think fondly about my grandparents whom I lost many years ago. They can be such a great influence on a grandchild’s development.
    Condolences, Fred

  7. Sorry to hear of this Philip. I lost my Grandpa late last year (the last of my grandparent). May your Grandmother rest in peace…
    My best wishes and most faithful prayers to you and your family.

  8. I’m sorry for your loss and hope your heart heals as soon as possible. It seems the bigger the love, the harder the loss. Based on the pictures, your grandmother exuded love. What a beautiful woman. Warm thoughts to you and your family.

  9. Phil, Condolences – It’s so easy to take Family and friends for granted in such busy times… Strangely I am going to my Grandmother’s 90th birthday in 1 week – hoping to get nice shots / some video of all the family together (thinking of hiring the 70-200IS II to try out)…

    Remember that people never truly die – but live on in memories / the people around them.

    RIP Grandma Sarah Bloom

    STR

    1. Quote someone sent me a while ago –

      “You can shed tears that she is gone,
      or you can smile because she has lived.
      You can close your eyes and pray that she’ll come back,
      or you can open your eyes and see all she’s left.
      Your heart can be empty because you can’t see her,
      or you can be full of the love you shared.
      You can turn your back on tomorrow and live yesterday,
      or you can be happy for tomorrow because of yesterday.
      You can remember her only that she is gone,
      or you can cherish her memory and let it live on.
      You can cry and close your mind,
      be empty and turn your back.
      Or you can do what she’d want:
      smile, open your eyes, love and go on.”

      take care and remember the good times.

      Seb

  10. I’m truly sorry to hear that, Philip.

    Whenever a close friend or family member passes on, there’s always that grim feeling of emptiness and the reality of our time fleeting by. Makes me contemplate what will really last.

    Will be praying for you and your family during this hard time.

  11. Philip:

    So sorry to hear about your loss. My grandfather passed away three years ago, and like your Nana lived through WWII. I have so many memories and stories about him that I’ll carry with me the rest of my life. My condolences go out to you.

  12. So sorry to hear about your loss, Phillip. I can relate to what you’re going through as I just lost my last grandparent in October 2009. I understand what you mean about wishing you had called them or visited the more often. It was a good reminder for me that life should never get so busy that we end up with nothing left for the ones closest to us. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  13. Never easy bro! I know how it feels to loose someone special. My grandma was wonderful person, full of life and spunk till she had a couple strokes then she was on an IV for two years in pain. It was very sad to see someone with so much life have to live in such pain. We all miss her but know she is in a better place now.

    Cherish the good times and all the lovely memories. Your nana looks like she was happy and lived a full life like mine.

    Sorry for your loss…all the best to you and your family!

  14. Sorry to hear about your loss. Both my parents passed within the last year. The emptiness has been a tough one. They say time heals… I hope so.

  15. Philip,

    So sorry to hear about your loss. It is hard when our loved ones leave us. It is even harder when we are not there to comfort our family members (and be comforted by them).

    I know your pain right now. I was living in Iceland in the late 80’s when I received a message that my grandmother had passed away. It was a total surprise and I wasn’t able to go home for the funeral.

    My thoughts will be with you and your family during this trying time. Hopefully your blog will be an outlet for you to deal with this, since you are away from your family.

    Daniel Weber

  16. I’m so sorry for your loss Phil. I lost my grandpa a few months back and it’s always such a big loss. I just wish to send you and your family my sympathies in these difficult times. God bless.

  17. You and your family you have My Deepest Condolences Philip,
    She looks wonderful and full of life in the picture with your dad.

    God Bless her and your family Philip.

    -Greg

  18. I’m very sorry to hear this Philip, my deepest sympathy is with you and your family.

    The loss of my grandma was the most devastating thig I’ve ever went through and despite I don’t think the wound would ever heal, I remember her everyday.

    Be strong man.

  19. Philip my thoughts are with you – as I have an idea of your love for your Grandmother. Mine is and always will be as my mother.

    Again – I just wanted you to know my thoughts are with you.
    Take care.

  20. I’m very sorry for your loss. She must have been a wonderfull grandma since she is responsible for you, your beautiful movies and your generosity. Lots of strenght to you, your dad and family.

    Hans

  21. My condolences to you Philip. I hope you and the rest of your family find the strength to get through this; cherishing all of the good memories you had.

  22. I’m sorry for your loss, and my sincere condolances.
    It is very hard to lose a beloved person, especially if you share a special bond with her.

    good luck the coming weeks.

  23. I’m very sorry for your loss. My grandmother died earlier this year. It’s terrible to think of all that we lose when a generation disappears. All the stories she could tell, the experiences she could share and the great recipes that disappear with her. It won’t make anything any better, but I know exactly what you’re going through now.

  24. Really sad. I hope you will find some peacefull time to process your loss. So that you remember all the good things she did in her life for you and everyone around. Remember like a shortfilm which will always stick to your thoughts whenever you wish to think about her. All the moments we take for granted: may they become like a timelapse and freeze up in 1000p. May God give you and your family the strength you need for this.

  25. I’m really sorry to for your loss, Philip. Deepest sympathy and prayers for you and your family.

    I’ve learned recently – there’s never enough time – no matter how much time you spend with the ones you love. Our memories, though, keeps them in our hearts forever.

    You’re in my thoughts.
    joe

  26. Condolences once again. I was very close to my Nana, she practically brought me up and was my best friend. Loosing her was the hardest thing I’ve ever been through so I can only imagine what it feels like for you being so far away from your loved ones. It sounds like she had a long and happy life, surrounded by people who loved her. 🙂

    My thoughts are with you and your family.
    TJ xo

  27. I’m really sorry ; all my condoleances Phil.
    She looks so lively, nice and smiling – She’s in you since your first day and will be with you until your last one – because without her, there wouldn’t be you – you’re a part of her and she’s a part of you.
    Rest in peace Nana.
    You’re not alone Phil – keep beeing this wonderful man for her too.
    Sincerely.
    LFK

  28. My deepest condolences to you and your family for your loss. I understand how it must feel as I also lost my maternal grandfather last year. The only grandfather I knew and we shared a great interest in tinkering and for me he was also a ‘previous era’ now past.

  29. Philip,
    What a wonderful blessing to have had her so close to you for so long, and to have known her like you did! Sounds like she was a great lady; she looks so full of life. I lost my grandmother last month; she was one of a kind and very close to me, so it’s been difficult; but also life-affirming to remember all of the good times and the good fortune to have had her here for so long. Keep in mind that her spirit is still very much alive and with you always. Our thoughts and prayers are with you as well. Peace and dear remembrance to you and your family,
    Joe

  30. “Death is nothing at all… I have only slipped away into the next room. Whatever we were to each other, that we are still.
     
    Call me by my familiar name, speak to me in the easy way which you always used. Laugh as we always laughed together. Play, smile, think of me, pray for me.
     
    Let my name be the household word that it always was. Let it be spoken without effort. Life means all that it ever meant. It is the same as it ever was: there is absolutely unbroken continuity.
     
    Why should I be out of your mind because I am out of your 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.”

  31. Sorry to hear about your nan….. mine passed away aged 103 yrs young, my grandson was nearly 2 yrs when she died…. there being 102yrs between them…. sad times…. understanding your loss, regards, ken

    1. Phil, Im so sorry for your loss. My grandmother is also very ill and will pass away soon. She gave me so much love and kindness during my youthful years. I have very fond memories of her, memories that will never fade. Now I will harder to spend as much time with her as possible even though she does not remember me.
      Stay strong and keep your head up.
      Regards,

      Freddy

  32. Sorry to hear about your nana. I lost my last grandparent a little over a year ago. She was very special to me for one we shared the same birthday day. I miss her a lot and especially on Nov. 11. My prayers are with you during this time.

  33. Hi Philip,

    I too have recently lost the last of my grandparents and I truly understand how you feel. It sounds like she has a wonderful family who loved her very much and in the end, that is all that matters.

    Cherish the memories and make sure that you pass on the love and compassion to your family that she gave to you. If you do that, she will always be with you.

    God bless.

    Jim

  34. My heartfelt sympathy to you and your family.

    Sorrow for the loss, regret for things not done, joy in the knowledge and remembrance of a life well-lived.

    God bless,

    Jamie

  35. So sorry to hear about your gran, they are the best…wisdom, loving…all wrapped into a wonderful person. My regards to you and your dad….such a loss !

    Yours Philip Johnston

  36. Philip,

    I was basically raised by my grandma’ and I know 100% what you are going through right now.
    It’s a tough moment but her voice and her memories are with you forever because she’s forever in your heart.
    You’ll see…you will hear her voice in moments of joy and despair. Her wisdom will become your own and it is because of her that you are the way you are today.
    The treasures she left you are a lifetime of memories of all the time spent with her.

    Take it all in Philip and breathe.

    Sending prayers your way.

    P

  37. So sorry to hear about this Phil. Just goes to show that you’ve gotta make the best of every moment. Our time on earth is so small in the big picture. You are such an inspiration to everyone who watches your films. Your films for the most part spread the message of living life and capturing memories. Keep up the great work and I’ll be praying for your family!

  38. Sorry to hear about your grandmother. I have tears in my eyes now. I just recently lost my son in law, only 40 years old to ALS. My daughter wanted a video of the funeral so I had a friend shoot. I’m having trouble editing it because it makes me cry so much.

  39. Reminds me of my gran, hope she is alive for many years yet.

    Their age group went through so much in those war years, the current younger generation take it for granted what so many sacrificed.

    Sorry for your loss Philip.

  40. Sorry Philip for your loss. On the photos your grandma looks so warm and hearty – i’m sure that she was a very lovely old lady and i can imagine how much such a loss hurts. My Nana died over ten years ago but in a way she is with me every day. Im sure your grandma gave much of her unique charakter and qualities to you, so she will be part of your live forever. Be proud to be part of her live! Their era will never end as long as we still remember!

    And to all other people out there: Live, love and enjoy every day – our time is limited…

  41. Hi Philip,

    Really sorry to hear about your loss – I’ve just lost my Dad so I can totally empathise with you.

    Sad though their passing is we must remember, in the midst of of our grief, to celebrate their lives and remember the wonderful times we shared with them.

    Thoughts are with you.

    Andy B

  42. My deepest condolences to you Philip and your family.
    When I read this post, all I was thinking about is my Grandma
    who made great influence in my life, she is 90 years old and very sick now.

    Take care.
    Ruban from Canada.

  43. Philip,

    I am so sorry for your loss. sounds like she was a wonderful women. You said she had been ill recently, Well I pray that she is now in much better place and is dancing like when she was a young little girl without a care in the world.

    Blessings,
    Jason

  44. Dear Mr. Bloom,
    My deepest condolences for your loss. Although passing away is the law of nature, still it is very hard to experience the loss of a loved one. One day or another we all go through these experiences, and unfortunately no matter how much one can get prepared to the inevitable outcome, it is still hard to accept.
    My sympathies for your family.
    Regards,

  45. Ciao Phil,
    just come back from Bali,and check your site, i know is hard but to believe,
    but your grandma is going in a better place,
    the gods will take care of her 🙂
    a big pray to my guru…

    Martin

  46. Phillip – happy you have this forum so we could all know your grandmother ‘ a little bit’.

    Now you have to become for others what she gave you.

    And hold your parents tight, cherish their words and the time you have now.

  47. Hello Philip,

    My condolences for you and your family. I know how hard it must be for you now. I also had a special bond with my grandmother.

    My prayers are with you!

    God bless you

    Barry

  48. Angels rejoice with trumpet and song as one of the Lord’s beloved daughters has returned home to be with friends and family who have gone before. Philip your family will be in our prayers. Truly on this day a Saint has gone marching in:-)

    I am just a lonesome traveller,
    Through this big wide world of sin;
    Want to join that grand procession,
    When the saint go marchin´in.
    Oh when the saint go marchin´in,
    Lord I want to be in that number
    When the saint go marchin´in.

    All my folks have gone before me,
    All my friends and all my kin;
    But I’ll meet with them up yonder,
    When the saint go marchin´in.
    Oh when the saint go marchin´in,
    I will meet them all up in heaven,
    When the saint go marchin´in.

  49. Mr Bloom, Let me firstly offer my sincere condolences to you and your family.
    For a few years now myself and others have followed and enjoyed your work and your tutorials, hoping we can improve our skills and achieve whatever we’ve set out to do. It is quite humbling that you should take the time out of what is a very sad and distressing time for all involved, and to share your thoughts and your loss with us. I believe that all the previous comments and the ones to follow may go some way in helping you at this very unfortunate chapter in your life. I shall be raising a glass to you and yours and hope that you celebrate your Nana’s life.

    God Bless

    Woody

  50. I lost my Grandmother last April Philip. I know what you are going though. Keep strong, and always remember the good time spent with her.

    All the best to you and your family,

    Peter Vandall

  51. I lost my mom a few years back, those moments are tough but its the great memories and moments in our lives that the people we love leave us. It makes you really appreciate everything we have and all those we can share it with.

    Best wishes to you and your family

    Greg Frewin

  52. Am sad to hear this. My thoughts are with you and your family.
    It’s great to hear she lived a full life!
    We were just having a party for grandma’s 89th birthday on the same day. Will give her an extra hug when I next see her!

  53. Very sorry to hear that Philip. She certainly looks like a nice and warm person. May she rest in peace.

    I still got two grandmothers and your message certainly made me realize that time is flying…

    Take care, both of you

  54. Very sorry about your loss Phillip was reading this post with tears in my eyes, had lost my grandmother 2 years back use to call her Dada it was a flashback. My condolences for all of you. May God rest her in Peace.

  55. Philip,

    I didn’t want to say anything at the meet up because I didn’t feel it was the right place. I know how hard it is to lose someone. I was not fortunate enough to be alive to meet all my grandparents, but I do know how it feels to lose a relative that you are very close to. I was very close to my aunt and uncle who both passed away very suddenly. They were always there for every big event, and there isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about them, and how much they mean to me.

    Eventually the pain subsides, and all that is left is the wonderful memories that you have, and no one can take that away from you. Memories is what allows us to keep those we love with us forever, and when we think about those people we loved, that feeling of sadness will be replaced with happiness, because we were the lucky ones that were there in their life to share in those memories.

    My deepest sympathies and condolences to you and your family.

    Michael

  56. Hello Philip,

    I am sorry to hear of your loss.

    Mostly I wanted to add a message to your list of responses, to show how many people’s lives you touch with your own generosity & creativity. I am certain your Grandmother must be watching proudly from Upstairs.

    my best regards,
    Mickey

  57. Dear Philip’s Dad and Philip. I extend my condolences to both of you. I used to tell people that time was the ointment, that time healed the wound. Now I don’t – some hurts, as Frodo says, go too deep. We look like blasted oaks, a great bough has been blown off in a storm – the wound heals over a bit, but always and forever an observer can see that something is missing. It’s one of those bitter-sweet things we are not at all used to handling – especially in our Western culture. Grieve the loss – something wrong if you both did not – but also celebrate the life. Gran carried Dad in her womb – what a great gift to have brought, so as to speak, both of you into the world. Treasure her in your hearts, as I know you will.

  58. All the best to your family in this time Philip, my grandmother is approaching 83 and I know there isn’t anyone else in the world who I know has witnessed and experienced things that she and her generation has.

    I am 23 and am so thankful that every day life is easy for us because of the things that our grandparents went through many years ago. Every single time I visit her home I cant help but look through all her photographs and letters from up to 60 years ago. The day that she is no longer with us I will be just be so happy that I have known her and being passed down these experiences, thats all I could ever have wanted.

    regards to your family and everyone who knew Nana Bloom.

    Matt

  59. Dear Philip

    I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Loosing a loved one is the worst emotion
    we will ever go through. The grieving period can only be helped by those
    who love you, your family and friends. I believe you are part of a wonderful
    loving family, and that is something which no one can take away.

    My Best wishes to you and your Dad and the rest of your family.

    Joe

  60. Phil, you need to take her with you now on every creative project you do. Having lost my grandparents long ago–and having lost my parents almost long ago I understand precisely.

    Best of luck.

  61. My best regards for your whole family…

    With the wonderful pictures you made on her, she is like living for a long time around your personnal meditation.

    Ed Woods Jr

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