New World

It happened again. Too close again. There was a stabbing in a nearby town, the boy looked about eighteen. A place I'd been many times, been inebriated many times, a place with 'security' guards that obviously failed their jobs. If I still lived that life I once lived, I could've been there that night, watching someone's last moments. A nightmare that would haunt me.

I know there are places where this situation happens all the time, next town, next street, next door, but it doesn't happen that often here. We're lucky here usually, in the last couple of months everything feels like hell, with all that's going on in the world, and then what's going on here on this little island. In two months, an acid attack, a machete attack, two fatal stabbings and a murder. My nerves are in pieces, what's next? It doesn't happen here so why is it happening?

I'm blaming recent political debates resulting in the general public voting for division, I'm claiming that the rumbling of a civil war is threatening to rip the rain clouds apart. A race war that's about to fork lightening across the country and scorch the earth. We will have a front seat to the end of our lives as we know them and if we survive it, will adapt to living in the burnt out ruins democracy left behind when it fled with its tail between its legs. We will have to start over again.

Burden

I’m sorry to burden you with my troubles, with the stupid things I say that worry you, that afterwards I didn’t mean to say. 

I’m sorry I cost so much money, it must be a lot because you always bring it up in an argument. 

I’m sorry I don’t like it when you leave and make you feel guilty, but I’m just too scared to be alone. 

I’m sorry I can’t pay you back for all the times you’ve given me money so I can go shopping to cheer myself up.

I’m sorry to complain about how much housework I have to do when I’m in the middle of a manic episode and I’m cleaning things that aren’t dirty.

I’m sorry I refuse to take medication for my condition because I don’t want to feel numb and I understand that my decision makes your life harder, but makes me feel more human. 

I’m sorry that I am the way that I am and that there’s nothing I can do about it, because even my happiest day can suddenly turn sour for no reason and I may want to end my life.

I’m sorry that you think it is a failing on your part that I feel the way I do, and I’m sorry that I can’t seem to convince you that it’s not your fault.

The C Word

I’ll admit I’ve been wallowing in self pity something chronic for weeks now. It’s growing on me like a fungus or a mould, I scrape it off, it grows again more dense and with more determination to cover me until I’m no longer myself I am only a rotting, weaker version of a human that once had the hopes of being something more. I fester. In my job and in my personal life, if I can call it life, I stare blankly at a wall all day until it’s over, feeling cheated by fate. Surely fate does not want me here, surely fate knows that I’m better than this? That I can do more than this!

There are a few things in this world that bring me joy, a few people who understand how I feel and listen when I’m losing it. I love nature, I could walk all day in a forest, the fresh air soothes me. Gardening focuses my mind when I can’t walk, there’s something ridiculously therapeutic about digging through the dirt to nurture life. The sun shining when I’m not at work. Not being at work. Fattening food and most importantly family, a mother, sister and aunt to be precise. We celebrate birthdays together, Christmases, we go on spa days, holidays, a little odd posse running across a car park in the rain with bad knees, laughing the whole way at the others running into the wrong door. Giggling over tea and a Danish pastry, digging into steaks and discussing how we’d share everything if one of us were to win the lottery!

I think my happiness would die if anything happened to one of them. What if I did? I would be even more nothing than I am now. I’ve always considered myself a puzzle, each piece a person, an event or a personal trait. When something bad happens, I lose pieces. There isn’t much of me left, so I tried to make my own but they didn’t fit. I feel like there are only a few people I can show what’s left of me to and without them no one would know me, I’d lose the last of my pieces and would cease to exist.

Today my aunt was called in for tests, lumps were found where they shouldn’t be and now I’m thinking of the big C but I can’t say it. It might not be, they don’t know anything yet and if it is, it could be easily fixed with complete removal.. could. I don’t want to think that it could happen but really it will happen eventually and I’m scared for them all. Foolish to presume that because I am the youngest that I am slightly more invincible than them but I don’t think I care so much about losing my life as I do about losing my mind without them to keep me sane. To suffer forever without them would be worse than dying but to watch it happen would be worse still. 

I keep thinking that if one of them were to go before I got married then they would not see my wedding, my potential children, them growing up and hearing stories of us first hand about ringing wind chimes in Devon thinking they were doorbells, and walking around in new slippers that are still tied together. How we loved to shop and eat and be together and that it was one of the few joys in life to have someone to talk to, to trust with your secrets and to hold your hand in hell until the fire burns out.

I hope that everything will be okay, I hope that nothing comes if this and that it is just a scare and nothing more. 

I’ll hold her hand in hell until I burn out.

Relapse

I’ve lost it again. I made the mistake of suppressing my emotions and forcing myself to be happy for others and as a result I have imploded. I don’t really know how it happened, or when it started but I know that I had to sleep all day yesterday and dreamt of awful things.

My partner couldn’t handle me so he left me in the house alone while he drank beer with his dad. I needed him and he left me… typical. So I slept. My body was worn out and I slept. I didn’t make him tea, or breakfast, or picked up his socks, scrubbed his kitchen floor or ironed his shirts. I slept. It was the best thing I could do for him, his alternative would be to not have me in his life at all to do any of these things.

He can’t seem to fend for himself anymore, he becomes a hopeless child eating dry crackers or nothing at all. Resenting me for not taking care of him when I need to be taken care of.

I’ve not felt so terrible in months, long before we got engaged, I was losing my grip on life and felt unwanted, as an unmarried spinster with no value at all to anybody. No decent wage to pay my way, a pathetic leech on his funds, I was ready to go and take my failure life with me to make his life better. I still feel a failure but at least I feel like a wanted failure with my solitaire diamond sparkling back at me from the third finger of my aging hand. He keeps me here now. I live for him now.

I can’t seem to clear my mind of the thoughts of what could’ve been, my silly hopes for my future that evaporated when I realised that I was incapable of achieving them, I was my own barrier to my success and I stood firmly planted in the ground, feet buried in cement when it was time to move forward. I failed myself and I make him suffer also. 

They should have told me that I’d never make it, that I wouldn’t survive but they just kept telling me I could conquer the world, but the realities burned up in the acid in my stomach along with my medicine and with any hope of getting better.

I imagine my wedding day, I see run mascara and an ugly bride walking down the aisle to a make believe life in a pure white dress made of newspaper, as worthless as the the woman wearing it. She doesn’t make it to the altar, she gets swallowed by the black cloud that has followed her for 20 years.

Dead End

I’m alone too often with my own thoughts, which isn’t good for me. 

I’m paid staff in a charity shop, with volunteers who don’t turn up half the time. So all I do is deal with people alone who treat me like the scum of the earth for a little bit of money.

I’m told I should be grateful, that I should feel like I’m doing something good, but I’m not and I don’t. I hate every second of it. Serving the general public is the most thankless aspect of my job and I hate being treated like I’m nothing.

This place reminds me of my life’s failures every day. How stupid I was for thinking I would one day be worth something.

I completed a 12 month training course last week at an attempt to prove to people that I had a brain and that it still worked, but again it only reminded me of what I don’t have. A goal or aim in life, a path to follow. I see no paths anymore, I think I used to, I can’t remember. There are no more routes to take, I stand on a square in the middle of the ocean waiting to be rescued but nobody’s coming and I can’t swim.

How Can I Survive In This World As A Talentless Individual?

I honestly don’t know. I’m not what I would describe as surviving in the world, I feel like I’m constantly sinking and floating further away from what is good for me and closer to dementia. My mind is not exercised to its limit here rifling through junk all day. I need more, I know that I need more. I so desperately need to feel important, to feel needed and a necessary part of a vital team, not a speck on the payroll. 

I feel so capable of affecting change, of truly helping people instead of helping line a mans pocket who takes all the credit for the tasks I completed with my broken body. He’ll throw us an email every now and again with a half hearted “thank you” and even sometimes a “well done”, the following week he’ll be in the papers, preened and smug, never having to lift a finger to boost his sales, just promise us a couple of pence more for thousands of pounds of profits.

I’m not smart like him, savvy and business minded would never have been a way of describing me. Determination was never a trait of mine, nor confident and I’m afraid that there is no place for me in this world, other than to have children and burden them when I’m old.

War

I have stood on the ground where my grandfathers Navy cruiser blew chunks out of the French soil aiming for Germans. He loaded the guns that killed many but didn’t see what he was doing so that makes it okay? No. It doesn’t.

I know why he never spoke of it, I know he knew what he did and what his friends did on that beach. This is war, a word used to justify killing thousands.

I don’t know about any body else but the news becomes more disturbing to me every day, bombings, stabbings, terrorism, dozens dead, thousands dead, millions dead. As long as there have been humans there has been war, but recently it is something else, it’s direct and right there on your doorstep. The battlefields are now schools, shopping malls, theatres, large scale buildings full of people to cause maximum damage. There is no art in war. We fight insane people who have the urge to harm others for the sake of it, we fight religious groups, or those that are posing as religious groups, who want to kill children at concerts for historical revenge on the Western world. What is this? Is this qualified as civil war yet?

In a local town, too close for comfort, a (supposedly) Islamic shopkeeper got attacked by a gang of thugs armed with machetes as a response to recent events. What did he do? Refuse to serve them alcohol? What justifies that? What makes those thugs any different to terrorists? They are terrorists now, it has nothing to do with religion or colour anymore. Then there was the white man in London with ‘mental problems’, a term his family used to explain why it wasn’t a terrorist act. He intentionally sought out to hurt as many people as possible of a specific religion in a public place; definition: terrorist. Hmm… but he’s white!

Before I run away completely with my train of thought, I just want to draw attention to my “(supposedly) Islamic” comment. Yes, well, although we have long established that Islam is not associated with terrorism and that no part of the writings of the Qur’an does it state that it is okay to perform horrific and inhuman acts in order to ‘defend the faith’, and that the saying ‘not all Muslims are terrorists’, springs to mind but there was a serious assault a few months ago in a town not far from where I live where a Sikh man was attacked by a gang of youths in broad daylight, who insinuated, while they were beating his body and tearing his turban from his head, that the attack was because he was Muslim.

Erm… So this is how it is here. One word comes to mind which I won’t type here but it is along the lines of being so blinkered and dumb that there is no hope for the world if these thugs remain a part of it, and that people like this are the reason why terrorism exists.

Now I may not be smart, I may not say the right things, I may upset people sometimes, but I like to think that I’ve got half the brain to decide between what’s right and what’s wrong and yes, historically the British Empire has taken a lot from the world, couldn’t the same be said about the rest of the world at some point in history, many conquests have taken place, we’re all human and this is what happened and it can’t be changed unfortunately.

On the brink of progress we fall at the final piece of straw and allow the uneducated masses have the final say. What happens? War. Haven’t we been here before?