a not-at-all-objective manual to work through an anxiety attack in the middle of a pandemic by Anja Meyer

do not think about your mother, small and frail, waving through the windows of her nursing home. do not think about your father on the second floor, too sick to see you. do not think about their empty house, the empty garden, the dents in the carpet where the grand piano stood, the dusty traces of frames on the walls, the magnolia leaves scattered on the front lawn, the creaking door, the memories, the memories. do not think about your body┬┤s betrayal, your own blood turning against you, the pain, the panicked nights, the terror of this parallel universe.

Breathe in

think about the boy sleeping safely far away. Think about his feet when he was little, of the way his laughter still sounds, of the eye-rolling, the furtive hugs, the generous emojis, the chuckling when you sing in the car, the love, the love. think about your dog dreaming of adventures in canine countries, about his worshipping eyes that glow in the dark, you know they will save you.

Breathe out slowly

think of the way moss smells after a night of rain, of the way everything unfurls, of all the green, all the blossoms, the sky. think of the air and the water and the way tea tastes only in scotland, think of the bitter-sweet october-light on heather, the peat-fires, the highland-cows. Think of the beauty of glass and stones washed smooth by the sea.

you know you will save yourself.


Anja Meyer lives and works in Berlin and writes in German and English. She is always homesick for Scotland.

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