The events in Manchester last night have really shaken me.

Manchester is our nearest ‘Big City’, I worked there for a while pre-kids, and often go for shopping trips there. The Manchester Arena itself holds many a fond memory from my childhood and teenage years, having been home to many gigs I have enjoyed.

I can almost re-live the atmosphere and excitement I felt as a little girl going there, the exhilaration of being in a room so massive, surrounded by people all there for the same thing. The overwhelming noise of music and the buzz of the crowd.

It’s unimaginable that anyone would want to ruin that, for innocent people, only there to have the experience of a concert.

I hardly slept last night, as I was following everything unfolding. Friends had children there for the gig, others had family working in the vicinity. Thankfully all safe, but still the terror of the unknown left me unsettled and shaken.

My heart aches for those whose loved ones are still missing. The social media posts being shared thousands of times, with photos of children and teens, parents and siblings. The same messages that they just cannot get hold of their loved one.

I am feeling every second of pain with them, as I have been there.

My experience was on a tiny scale in comparison, and I didn’t have the ongoing horror of constant footage and information from the scene coming out, but I too was making endless phone calls to a mobile that just rung out. I told myself every reason under the sun as to why I had heard nothing, even going as far as convincing myself that the man who was hopelessly in love with me had met someone else and run off. It was a torturous 5 hours, so I cannot begin to imagine how broken those families are that are still waiting for news.

Until every person is accounted for, this pain will continue before new chapters can start. Be that being reunited with people whose phones were out of battery, those in hospital with life changing injuries, or those who get the worst news imaginable. Three years on, I am still haunted by that night, and panic sets in when someone loses contact unexpectedly. The families and friends of those lost will never be healed of this heartbreak.

I will not waste time on the soulless human who has done this. They are now a void, unimportant in existence.

The important people are those who have lost their lives, just for making memories, and those people left to try and make sense of this atrocity.

Sending love to whoever needs it today.