There, it is in the corner of the room, unobtrusive, you get the smallest look at it from the corner of your eye. You think nothing of it.
But in that glimpse Anemia entered your consciousness. Oh yeah, you’re paying attention now. You’ve heard of it, Anemia, and you think it’ll be in and out, a quick bit on side.
It’s a juggle, a new crush.
Your breathing gets harder, heavier, it catches in you throat. No oxygen, Anemia has its grip.
Crushes. They make your heart ache and your head swim. They change your behaviour; you drive a new way home, park in a new spot. These days I park on the roof of the supermarket so the steps I take are downward. I take the lift back up and think of how I used to be. Chock full of red blood cells.
There are days when you think of nothing but your crush.
First you say it quiet, to yourself, soon you say it loud, Anemia, Anemia, and then you’re telling strangers, because this thing, it’s moved in. Its signs are on your body, your brain has made the space for it.
And your brain – well, it’s haywire.
Concentration is lost. Words, words, they don’t connect. Sentences trail off, ideas float in and pop like bubbles, distraction is your new best thing.
Anemia doesn’t mind a Grand Gesture. There are seventeen steps in my house. At the top I’m week at the knees and Anemia knows I’m gone.
My bed is my new HQ and not in a good way.
You want to tell your crush you’re through. We’re finished.
You try to think of a nice way to say it.
You practice in the mirror.
You run it by your best friend.
You write a poem, it speaks of flowers and sunsets and letting go.
But Anemia doesn’t read and it doesn’t listen. It is proactive, though. It takes your breath and your ideas and it turns your days to junk. Dust forms on your beautiful bike. Stress builds because on your bike, off road, is where you take your troubles. You miss the smell of the forest, the sound of your tires on the trail and they way the butterflies tinkled across your path.
Your kids know all about your crush.
‘Not amenia, Mum. ANEMIA.’
‘Oh, yeah, sorry. Anemia.’
Anemia sharing my bed, my kitchen and my car. It’s not sharing my office because I never go in there. That’s okay. Stephen King Junior has picked up the slack. He’s spread his stories along my desk and is making documents on my computer. I‘ve had to replace the toner twice and push my jealousy away lest it make me appear unattractive.
Dear Anemia, It’s not me, it’s you. Please leave.
Stephen King Junior in my chair