The rustle of the grass in the summer breeze gave her goose bumps. The blonde hair on her forearm standing upright as if reaching for the warmth of the sun. Dampness rose from the grass as if a timer going off. Líobhan knew her ‘me time’ would be over soon. “Smell the flower, blow out the candle. Smell the flower, blow out the candle”. Breathing in deeply as if her life depended on it. The glowing on the horizon visible through her tear-filled eyes. Warm and salty, they streamed down her face and then hit the earthy soil, their final destination.

The zephyr felt as if it was offering a warm embrace. That skin to skin she so deeply craved seemed out of reach. Líobhan’s hands wrapped around her body so tight, nail imprints showed sign of connection, but she didn’t feel them. Shaking her head in disbelief, mourning that sense of self was gone forever. As if her past self was the pollen blowing in the wind, unsure of its destination.

Her body bolted upright as if she was launched from the damp meadow. A deep breath filled the lungs to such a degree the chest protruded, ready to burst. Throwing her hands out wide she shouted, “Where are you”. The sudden release of raw emotion seemed to take every ounce of energy from her. Collapsing to the ground her face grazed the grass. No pain was felt physically. All the anguish was inside. Closing her eyes to the pain that was felt that morning, Líobhan curled up and began to whimper.

How could one look in the mirror and not recognise the reflection? Who were these bloodshot, green eyes staring back? “Tell me who you are? It’s okay I won’t hurt you.” Her blotchy face covered with tangled clumps of hair not brushed for days opened its mouth but couldn’t speak. Disgruntled Líobhan says again, “Who are you?”. The reflection offered no indication of life. The person staring back seemed lifeless.

A baby cried in the background, alerting its mother of the need for connection. The baby smiled and cooed when “Mommy” was in sight. The warmth of her bosom offered more than nourishment. It offered love, reassurance and security. Could this be given to a mother in need. A mother who is deep in the trenches holding out hope someone will save her.

“Líobhan”, a man’s voice broke the silence. “Líobhan are you here?”. It took a few seconds to realise that she had fallen asleep. The glittering of lights appeared on the brow of the hill.

The Moon shining and the stars sparkling. It seemed to be a magical night. In a way it was. Líobhan felt her journey was beginning.

“I need help”, Líobhan said as she sunk her head into the chest of her husband. “Shhh shhh dear, you’re alright. I’m here now”. Stroking her hair with such tenderness and affection a realisation formed. Was a bosom always there for her only she could not see it. These months of sleepless nights and recovery seemed never ending until now. Now she felt heard.