….all that remains.

…..the numbing effect of the whiskey had long since worn off and the pain in my right ear from the icy wind had made me regret not pulling my hood up sooner. My teeth chattered uncontrolably and my body shook so violently under rain saturated clothes it almost made me laugh. Struggling to operate the little gps strapped to my wrist I hurriedly took a snapshot of the blurred display showing my elevation for proof . Ben Macdui’s famous mist had imperceptibly crept around me, reducing the limits of visibility to a perfect circle less than three meters in diameter crowding out the already weak light. The relentless rain ceased with a rapidity that earily suggested control. A sense of calm within my fog walled circle grew, the shaking had stopped and a deep relaxing lethargy wrapped itself around me. The early stages of hypothermia had drifted into something deeper, more profound- all it would take now to drift painlessly away for ever on its imeasurable current would be to do nothing, to sleep away forever the fear of watching my son succumb to yet another, this time fatal epileptic seizure or fall into the abyss of seeing him never wake up. As trivialy as deciding on breakfast cereals in the morning I wordlesly weighed the decision in my mind and within less than the span between thoughts the end theme of “the Furchester Hotel” played itself out with all of the absurd energy its guady puppet characters could muster, launched from a pointless memory ..”dont check out, dont check out..”. Deep in my subconscious the answer had long since been decided upon before i could even judge my own actions. The warming effects of a fresh fleece and hot coffee where almost instantaneously felt . The remaining journey north across the flooded plateau passed almost out of memory until i had reached the empty ski lodge and the end of the true wilds. I remained in the highlands another three nights and wondered if other parents of children with disabilities had faced a similar choice, did they experience guilt as a consequence? How many never made it out of the fog ?

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