I wish I was there already.
No wires. No nurses every two hours. No attempting to fill in minuscule fridge labels with an enormous marker pen. No inexplicably bleeping machines all night. No bleeping anger towards inanimate objects of the bleeping variety.
My night off.
A bit of Friday night telly. Maybe a glass of wine. Sleep. Oh that’d be nice.
I wish I was there. On my sofa, glass in hand.
A long way to go yet though. Tube, train, taxi. Then finally home. I should call when I’m on the train. No. Don’t call. It’s patronising. He’ll ring if something’s wrong. Just stop. Forget. Just for the next few hours.
Wow. It’s busy here. I forget. Being in there. It’s not even a long admission this time and I’m already not used to lots of people. This is central London on a Friday night. Stilettos, suits and clip-cloppy man heels everywhere. The post work crowd have been out for a while and they’re in full flow now. Spilling out of faux oak bars, clinking and talking over each other.
I remember those days. I’ve been out round here before. Fun nights of drinks, friends and chatter. I probably never noticed either. The enormous shadow. The overwhelming presence of a huge children’s hospital. I never wondered what was going on behind those sliding doors. I never saw them. The people scattered in shadows. Smoking cigarettes whilst staring at the ground. Pacing and whispering into their mobiles. I never wondered why they were there. Now they seem so present.
God, that girl outside the pub is absolutely hammered. It’s not even that late. Is she hugging him or using him to stay upright? Oh…too late.
Right. Tube station. Start weaving and get through quickly or you’re not going to make the overground.
I wish I was there already. I’m so tired.
Yeeesss. Nice speedy manouvering. And a seat, result. Sit down.
Ok. This needs to stop. This sick stomach turny feeling. Enough now. Think about home. And sleep. Yeah, sleep. I guess this is nature really. That’s why I feel like this. It’s David Attenborough territory. Darwin even. I’m going to be far away from my little boy and my primal self doesn’t like it. It can’t protect him from a tiger. Tiger? Where did my exotic cave-self live? Certainly not the commuter belt. Oh, I suppose there were sabre tooth tigers. Or were they just around with the dinosaurs? Mind you were we around with the dinosaurs? Should’ve paid more attention in history.
I wonder what size dinosaur I could take in a fight? If it like reeeeaaaaallly came down to it. Probably something pretty small. No spikes.
Wow these girls are loud. Do they not realise the volume? The armrest of the seat does not constitute an invisible soundproof wall. I really don’t need to know about her history with Dave from the Milton Keynes office. I would never have a drunken conversation…this…..loud…..Would I? Nah. Go with no and don’t search memory banks too hard.
Four more stops. Then train. Taxi. Home.
Wish I was there now. Walking through the door. Clambering for the lights, reaching in the dark. I’ll be cold. No one there all day. Empty.
They are just getting louder now. The shrieky laugh is a bit much. Oh god, I’ve become one of them. A kill joy whinger. There’s a spare paper there. I need to have a read of that and get over myself. I wonder how many people have read this one paper today. And statistically how many wash their hands when they go to the toilet? Why. Why go there? Read it and stop over thinking.
I won’t get long. Just an hour or so before sleep. Need to be up early. Ready to get back. That’s enough time to get warm and cosy. Get distracted by the TV. I’ll be quiet there. Very quiet.
It’ll be nice to be home. To head upstairs to my own bed. And I’ll try not to linger by that door.
God these girls are actually getting louder. And practically sitting on my lap. I like her shoes though...Pretty. Just one more stop.
Yep, when I go to bed I’ll go straight past it. Breeze past his room. The one room that should never feel so empty. I won’t do it. Not this time. Not again.
I won’t let that absence cause the fear to wrap round me. I won’t be choked by the ‘what if?’ The dreaded ‘what if?’ I won’t let those scenarios start running. I won’t look at the soft toys waiting for him on his bed. The traces of his presence.
I won’t imagine where he is and feel far too far away. I won’t long for the reassuring beeping and the soft sound of breathing. I won’t wish to be the one to hold him tightly when the nurse needs to wake him and the tears start to fall. I won’t wish I could reach out and feel the comforting rise and fall of his little chest. I won’t need that reassurance. I won’t spend my time away waiting to return.
I won’t spend my time wishing.