Floating on the surfboard, my legs dragging through the waves, and the cool water feels good on bare legs. Not just cold, it brings life back, where there is none. I stand, my stance wobbly at first, but my body remembers.
The wood feels solid beneath my feet, the only solid thing in my life right now. Since losing my husband, I want to feel something other than my grief. Wind kisses my face, waking me from my slumber.
Two years since losing my sight, but I still have a residue of memory of what the world looks like. It is like pictures. You put them in a frame, or a photograph album, and eventually the memory fails.
Losing your sight over time, and I have a residue of memory about my face. My identity. Hazel eyes, just like my dad. Mousy brown hair, just like my mum. I’ve never considered myself beautiful, not in the traditional way. Graham was the total opposite, handsome.
I close my eyes – I know silly right, but then I can visualise my surroundings, but nothing compares to what I am sensing now. The elevation of the waves, and it feels like I am flying, raising higher and higher until I am above everything.
The board keeps me safe, just like Merlin, my guide dog, guides me anywhere I want to go. It is my safety net. It leads me back to the shore. It dips, as the wave loses its momentum.
For a second, I’m hovering, above everything. Disconnecting myself from the last few months. Imagine, my husband still alive, waiting for me. With a mug of hot chocolate. His speciality made with real chocolate pieces, that crunch mixing in with the velvet.
As I lower, the waves are less dense than before. It dips down until I am level again, slowly moving towards the shore. I slide to a halt. My wetsuit clinging to me, brittle against my skin.
Poppy, Graham’s sister, waits for me on the shore.
‘Wow, you were great out there!’ she says.