The dawn is breaking. I am in a black-hearted place. I am standing in my darkened kitchen drinking a mug of peppermint tea. In the background that weapon of mass distraction otherwise known as the television mutters on.
I have not slept for several nights. I have not had a lengthy conversation with another human being in several weeks. I have shrunk from the world. I isolate myself, I wall myself in. Life breaks hearts and so I avoid it.
Nobby is dead. Correction: Nobby has been dead for a little oner a year now. ‘I promise I will be with you ‘till the end.’ I told him. It was a reckless promise and I never should have made it. But I cannot go back. I cannot go back. I cannot unpick the knots. On the cusp of death I abandoned him.
Come back, Nobby. Come back. I cannot accept that he is dead. I make tea and I find myself thinking, ‘I must make a cup for Nobby too.’ Or when I am out shopping: ‘I must pick up a treat for Nobby whilst I am here.’ Muscle memory carries me to the door of Nobby’s flat. Halfway across the lawn I freeze. He is not there anymore. I am left with a hollowed-out inside.
He visits me in my dreams. So often that I greet the dawn with disappointment. I don’t remember details. Just elusive images, like shards of broken glass. I try desperately to retrieve them.
I did not fully appreciate what I had until it was taken from me. I feel him like an amputated limb. I depended on him. Sometimes I felt as if he were my only friend, my only refuge in a perennially hostile world. And I know that he would have defended me to the death if the need had ever arisen.
Many spend their lives searching for heroes, for people to look up to, to explain. It must be said that there are those who look in vain and I am fortunate that, thanks to Nobby, I am not one of them. I have been blessed.
Which is why all this feels so terribly self indulgent.
Cherish what you have, while you still have it.
Check this out: War Stories
It began here: Reality Bites
Addendum: They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Does this also apply to brazen plagiarism?