About a month ago, Evee was really ill. I heard her in the bathroom at 4 am. I jolted up in bed wide awake, ready to help her, calling out to let her know I was there. I went to the bathroom and sat beside her with a glass of water, holding her hair and rubbing her back.
She had a fever and was burning up. I removed her thick duvet from the bed and replaced it with a thin cotton sheet to let her fever cool, just as our mum used to do for us and, later, as we did for Mum when she was ill. I made sure Evee was comfortable and slipped back into my own bed.
In that moment I realised that although 8 months had passed by, I was still in that nurse-on-a-night-shift mode. 8 months had passed, and my sleep still hadn’t truly recovered, never deep enough to truly rest. How can I still be listening out, just in case Mum needs me?