13 Nov An Angel on a Motorbike
RIP David Peach
16.01.1962 – 13.11.2021
I was talking with two men, I told them my story; my story of how life was not going very well for me. I was very unhappy. This enabled them to tell me their stories; they had been through the same stuff as me. At that moment, the idea for The Men’s Table was born.
One of those men was David Peach. We started meeting in June 2011 and Peachy was a founding member of that first Table.
Skip forward to very late October 2021
Yesterday was a very tough day. I went to the wedding of David Peach who is dying of pancreatic cancer. He married Tors, a wonderful, graceful, brave, elegant, strong, funny woman. They got married in a hospital chapel!
It is pissing down with rain as I write this. I mean Tasmanian rain. Hammering rain, with lightning, thunder and wide-eyed cats under the bed. It is mid-morning yet the lights are on to fight off the gloom. The lights only work to brighten the room, but I don’t feel their light. I feel the gloom, I feel the raw sensitivity. I feel like I’m the root of a tooth exposed and about to be touched by the dentist; You know what that feels like, jumpy, painful, full of anticipation, full of anxiety.
I have what can be called an emotional hangover. I know that there are people close by who have it way worse than me. The emotional and physical pain of David’s family far exceeds what I feel. However, we sit in what we have.
Yesterday was a beautiful, brave day. There were plenty of tears and funny moments. When asked by the celebrant if he would take this beautiful woman to be his wife, this fabulous man replied, “What now?” We all laughed. It was one of the wonderful funny moments during a day; a day when somebody unplugged the emotional tank of everybody involved and everything drained out. Everything! The rain continues to hammer down. What a metaphor right now.
David was supported by every man from the original Table; two of us in person and the other nine via Zoom. Thanks COVID! He knew that he and his fabulous wife Tors were supported by this community of men. His community of men. That morning, one of the men had said to him “You’ll have 11 Best Men alongside you. Not many men can boast of that”
Early November 2021
Our dear friend David has now gone back to Sydney after spending the last three weeks in hospital in Launceston. Flown from Tassie to the Northern Beaches of Sydney with his wife, leaving his beautiful dog and two cats. Leaving his beloved motorbikes. Gone home, with everything that means. Gone home to his mum and dad, his brother and sister, his son and daughter. Gone home to where he grew up. This has happened so quickly that our heads are spinning. Three men and their partners had relocated to Launceston, without The Men’s Table this probably would not have happened. However, we had built up such great bonds over the years of sharing. I feel like shit as I write this!
13th November 2021
David Peach, one of the most beautiful, genuine, gorgeous men you could ever meet left us. I imagine him sitting astride a motorbike, kicking the stand back, starting it up, roaring off with a “See you later, losers.”
He left us to become an angel on a motorbike. He will now have as many motorbikes as he wants. His saying of how many motorbikes does a man need? “It’s N+1”, will now be real for him. N being the number of motorbikes you already have. I can see his smile now.
How am I going to deal with this empty tank as I see the rain fill up everything outside? (yes, it is raining again in Tassie) I can’t imagine trying to get the plug back into my emotional tank myself. My body is physically tired, my emotions are raw. I can’t do this alone. There is no way the turmoil inside can be sorted out by myself. I need to put this on the Table, I need to get the story out. I need to share my feelings about what is going on.
Why do I need to do that? I need to do it because just talking about “footy and shit” will not cut it. I need people to hear how I feel. I need them to help me to start putting the plug back into the tank.
Talking about how I feel helps. It can take courage to do it sometimes. However, the more I do it the more I have in my tank. I was privileged to sit with David at the same Table for 9 years, virtually every month, hearing the highs and the lows.
If the plug has come out of your tank, talking about it will help others to come alongside you and help you put that plug back in.
Come and find out about The Men’s Table, it is a place to share how you really feel, and to refill your tank.
With much love to Peachy and Tors (Torchy) from every man at MT1 and every man The Men’s Table has helped.
~ Ben Hughes
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The David Peach Fund
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