I fell asleep with a well of tears in my heart and I woke up suffocating in the solitude of my bedroom, under the apparent safety of my duvet.
An intruder had entered my room silently and lay on my waist, pounding down on my chest, compressing the air out of my lungs with the weight of all the gravity in the world. I squirmed with all my might but the attacker was unrepentant, slowly, purposefully, and agonisingly squeezing all the beats out of my heart.
I heaved, flayed my paralysed arms and legs as much as I could to escape from this intense pressure but no movement, no fight, no strength could lift this enormous force crushing me. I began to panic with an intense mania as I could no longer feel the sensation to my limbs and my vision began to blur in the darkness. I screamed silently but as loud as I could, for the evaporating air in the room could now neither enter nor leave my lungs.
The weight got heavier, the room emptier, the crushing presence increasingly unbearable as this almighty power continued to smother any struggle I had left.
I soon felt the end of my life was approaching imminently, as I began pleading to be let go, to be saved.
“Help me,” I begged. But the weight grew stronger still.
“I will improve,” I promised. But the weight grew stronger still.
“I will do anything you want,” I vowed. But the weight grew stronger still.
My life was ending and in one final plea, I closed my eyes, believing it to be my last breath, and told my oppressor, “I promise, I will write.”
And suddenly, with no warning, no explanation, and with no repercussions, the force vanished, evaporating into the emptiness of the night. And I had the freedom to breathe once more but always to remember the promise I made.