Her reflection looked back at her, the sparkle in her hazel eyes long gone; run away with the glint that used to light up her smile. Would they ever come home?
Storm clouds had rolled in. They’d settled comfortably under those lost eyes which nowadays only ever glistened with fear and trauma; real happiness and safety long forgotten. Would the sun come back to burn through them? Or would it abandon ship and leave her in the darkness? So many people endured so much worse than her on a daily basis and come out the other side, so surely the rays would return to light up her world again some day? All those others appeared to cope, but could she?
She stared at her reflection once more. The only words which sprang to mind were “broken” and “haunted”. She knew there was much more pain to come. She knew that pain was lurking in the doorway, gathering intel on her family while awaiting it’s moment to strike. Soon. It’s imminence was already gripping her, tighter and tighter each time she thought about the inevitable. The hands of grief gently raked their way up her body, grasping at her ribs, preparing to crush the breath out of her lungs when the devastation finally bursts the dams and floods her family.
Meanwhile, the world moves on, still celebrating, laughing and joking, yet, her sky is ever-darkening. The sun is only just peeping through now, it’s magic slowly and sadly burning out.
Everything hurts. And yet, it doesnt. Numb with anguish, she tries to plod on, straining to see even just a glimmer of light. It must be here somewhere. She pushes on, keeping her head down when others look in her direction whilst she wipes her tears on her sleeves. She fights back against the insomnia which attacks her in the dark of night once the world is even quieter, lonelier.
Perhaps she’s not fighting hard enough to escape the storm. Perhaps staying in those dark clouds is her attempt to prepare herself for the hurricane that’s yet to hit. Perhaps it’s her preparation for the imminent battle to keep her head above the water when the next dam breaks. Or perhaps she just needs to be thrown a life raft.
She ponders: ‘Is it worth loving so ferociously when you know that one day, or if you’re as lucky as she is, that there will be many, many days where your heart is ripped from your chest, squeezed by the hands of death, and hung out to dry by grief?’
Her head paused, but her heart didn’t skip a beat.
Yes. Yes, it absolutely is.
Things may continue to worsen, but in time, it’s possible to heal, to recover and to replenish your zest for life. Hopefully some day, hers will too. Hopefully her ‘some day’ is soon. Hopefully.