Waves of nausea cartwheel around my body as I think about the Inquest into my girl’s death looming over me. It will be gloomy, there’s no doubt about that. How do I get past that point, that significant milestone on this treacherous journey and hope that there’s some of me left on the other side?

I’ve read the Pathology Report in preparation, I try not to think about the words I have read or to give them a direct context to my girl. Official terminology that I don’t understand is a welcome blanket I’m happy to hide behind. Don’t explain what these words mean – I don’t want to know. But despite many I didn’t understand, there were many I did and it is those words that I play a game of hide and seek with. They tag me in the darkness and wind me. I hear them counting as they shout ‘ready or not’ and I cower at their footsteps.

With all of this, I’ve had to mentally prepare and brace myself for what I’m entering into. It’s in my diary like a bomb waiting to go off and for the next 20 hours, I see the luminous numbers rapidly decrease. At times like this I withdraw a little from my social life as I limber up in the assault course of my mind and use every tool in my ‘virtual’ toolbox honing every neuron to ensure I’m ship shape and fighting fit.

BANG, the bomb goes off, do I survive? Do the experts at the Inquest pull my safety blanket back and leave me shuddering at the words bounding around the Coroner’s Court? I know they will be as sensitive and considerate as they can, but there are limits to how much they can protect me. I don’t want strangers and the media knowing the intimate details of my girl’s autopsy. How much will they disclose – I have no idea, so I need to prepare myself for all possibilities and that’s impossible under these circumstances.

So, I try not to think about it, but it thinks about me all the time.

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