As an eighteen year old I woke one Monday morning to a nosebleed.  A rare thing in those days.  That particular event transpired to be the exact time my much loved Grandad died.  Perhaps the first person I’d felt really close to who’d moved on.

Nosebleeds are more common for me these days.  A result of seven months of Bells Palsy.  The right nostril has effectively been ripped apart and spends its day healing and tearing.  The left nostril has been delivering modest trickles, barely noticeable, that have appeared without my knowledge.

This morning brought an absolute beauty.  I woke shortly after 7am.  Late for me, but I’d been awake for two hours earlier in the night watching the awful events in Manchester unfold.  I was immediately aware of that dry stickiness across my face mouth and chin.  And onto my neck.  Blood.

I lay on my back for a moment fearing movement would trigger a further cascade out of my nostril, but took a judgement call that this was unlikely.  I turned, carefully, to see a pillowcase covered in the dark red of dried blood.  I got up, taking a look in the mirror, and I saw a middle aged man who looked like he’d had his throat cut in battle.  I might volunteer to play an extra in Game of Thrones – I look the part!

Onto the shower.  Cleaning myself up.  Slightly bewildered.

You cannot begin to imagine the contempt I have for this Bell’s palsy.

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