Part 1: How the 9th of February is significant to me 

The 9th of February, an amalgamation of numbers and letters, none of any particular importance to many. To some it can be important because their child may have been born on this date, they may have been reunited with someone special on this date or it may be a date of a national holiday in some countries. For me up until 3 years ago, I was in the majority, it was simply just another ordinary day.

 On the 9th of February 2014, I lost my Mum. I was travelling when I found out. I received a phone call from my Dad whilst walking down a dusty Road in old flip flops on Koh Tao. I was walking on my own to get my 50 baht dinner from a small Thai food stall when he told me. It’s funny how you can remember the smallest of details all this time later yet in that moment the world goes blank. My Dad told me she was no longer here, that it was thought that she had suffered a heart attack. I can remember smiling at first hoping it was a bad joke(not that my Dad would joke about anything like this but it was the only conclusion my mind could come to without shattering my world in two). My heart raced and I dropped to the floor, sat in the middle of the street in the dust surrounded by people, noise, life but none of it mattered. My mind just couldn’t take in what I was being told. 

Whilst being thousands of miles away, in what many consider a sunshine paradise and what has aptly been named ‘The land of Smiles’, tragedy is not something that fellow traveller’s want to be focusing on. After all, they have come to have fun, to escape their 9-5’s, family and relationship drama’s and be free of responsibility. It made it easy for me to block out the full extent of what had happened, no one knew, no one felt sorry for me or wanted to comfort me and although my mind was filled with questions, I didn’t have to confirm the unbearable with words coming from my own mouth.

On returning home, my Dad told me the raw truth of how everything ended in my Mum’s time on this planet, I guess he was trying to protect me until he could comfort me face to face.

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