I haven’t written yet today because this is the first time today I’ve felt able to breathe. The sudden reality of the approach of Christmas dawning on me once again has left me a nervous wreck, making today one long, torturous panic attack. I am writing in the first bubble of almost-calm that I have been able to find; 11.30pm.
Today, everything has been overwhelming. I feel like I need to cry but am not able to make myself do so. I feel panicked and afraid, as though something is deeply wrong. But in my heart, I already know what it is that is wrong. I didn’t expect it to hurt as much, but perhaps being away from my family is making it worse. My grandmother’s absence is at the back of my mind all the time now, and the fear of Christmas without her only darkens the abyss. Even as I write, my hands are shaking and my heart is pounding in my ears. I think, perhaps, I am profoundly homesick. Or maybe nostalgic – homesick for a world that no longer exists, where my mother is happy and my family is all together. But children grow up and fly the nest, as my brother and I have done. I thought it was the right thing, I love the place I live now, three hours from my hometown, but somehow, in the back of my mind is the worry –
What the hell have I done?