The chain tightens around my neck once more. Sometimes, it sits so loose and I am so used to its weight I almost forget that it’s there, until it clasps back around my throat and I am gasping for breath. It can be the smallest things that wrench upon the end, capturing me in my noose, an act of violence on the television, an unusual smell, a taste, and suddenly I am overwhelmed. I might not even realise it’s tightened sometimes as I stare blankly, sweltering my own feelings trying not to let them show whilst my heart hammers against my rib cage “They can hear it, surely they can hear it!”.
On my own, I can fight against the chain. I prise my fingers between the cold and my skin, but the more I wriggle and fight, the tighter the chain gets.
I long to put this chain down so much.