The other day on FaceBook I found and reposted a picture of a T-Shirt that I was reminded of last night, a repeat of too may nights.
I slowly opened my eyes not surprised to find it was still dark, but not so dark I couldn’t see. The light from the streetlamp outside the window created an amber glow which filtered through to the bedroom. I glanced at the radio-alarm. Four-Oh-five. I slowly looked around the room that I knew so intimately picking out the shapes of everything that I knew so well.
The shape I knew best of all was missing. I looked away, I looked at the view out the window, such as it is, of the houses across the road. I tried to marshall the thoughts in my mind away from the memories, but they came unbidden.
“Go to sleep,” you would tell me when you found me awake in the middle of the night as if it were a choice to lie and worry. I was born worrying.
I flicked on the radio, very low. “Where are you now” sang Faded, a favourite on Radio Flaixback, my station of choice. I’d heard the song now, turning the radio off wouldn’t help to stop those thoughts coming.
Gently I moved onto my back, trying not to disturb the cats, Cuddy or Franki. “Shit, ouch,” I jarred my back again as I twisted, finally settling comfortably.
As I settled I grabbed my phone and turned it on to see what the rest of the world was up to. Having friends across the globe means at most times of the day and night someone will be awake and posting. Not tonight, just a message posted earlier telling me someone’s always listening and letting me know it’s suicide prevention month. Clearly no one was tonight. I thought of the paracetamol in the bedside drawer.
As the tears started free-flowing yet again, I chided myself for not being stronger and dropped my phone back on the bedside-table. “Where are you now?” I whispered into the darkness. I closed my eyes and gently fell apart. In bed is one of the few places I don’t feel the acute shame for my endless tears.
Suddenly there was movement beside me. A wet nose probed against my neck. A tongue licked away some tears. I reached out and grabbed her paw. We held hands and chatted about the man we miss, the good times and the not so good times that fill my head these nights. The ‘If onlys..’
That girl of mine is such a good listener. She laid her head on my chest and stared at me as I whispered in the dark. I apologised to her again for my stupidness. She wasn’t bothered. Her face full of love, she laid there and comforted me until I finally fell asleep again a few hours later. Someone was listening after all.