Squalor

Disgusting. Everything. Top to bottom. Filth. It’s as if I’d never lived here - as if no one had ever lived here. My childhood memories, completely vanished; then again, anything could be hidden beneath the inches of muck caked on to the walls and surfaces. Impossible to imagine that I’d once sat on this very floor (once beautiful hardwood, now insects had ruined its polished look, and I’m not convinced it hasn’t absorbed some of the rubbish that covered it) and played with the dog; or sat up on the sideboards (which told a similar story as the floors) and spilled cake mix over the sides of the bowl. I don’t even want to know what kind of state my old room is in, but for some unexplainable reason I can’t help myself but approach the horrible, somewhat unstable looking staircase…

Careful not to touch anything, stretching my sleeves over my hands and stuffing them into my armpits - as if that would somehow protect me from some deadly disease which had already made a victim of my childhood home and remained, lingering in the air.

Elbowing open the door, my heart stopped beating for a full three seconds and my stomach tied itself in multiple knots. Upon taking 5 steps into the room, it was as if my whole world fell away from beneath my feet, these were the very foundations of who I was; I suppose the hole I punched in the wall was my involuntary reaction to the situation - that plus the puddle of tears I found myself melting into.

I was in more of a mess than the house, and I couldn’t understand it - 8 years ago I’d said goodbye to this place. I haven’t even been in the country for 8 years. This shouldn’t affect me. This shouldn’t touch me. No matter how dilapidated - this isn’t who I am anymore.


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