me myself and i
A friend of mine is writing a book - A compilation of personal accounts centred around the #metoo hashtag.
Because we share this in common, my friend and I. We've both experienced the devastation, but thankfully, years later we've worked our way through it and come out on the other side using our respective coping mechanisms. Mine involved talking to a trusted friend at the time, seeking professional help, and eventually writing about it years later on my blog. My friend however, took a slightly less conventional approach....
We were chatting online. We talked about the book; discussed our own experiences, and I asked her if she had ever had counselling. After a minutes hesitation, her reply was "Not unless you count talking to the fridge"...
It was meant to be a joke, but it gave me a kind of lightbulb moment...which I thought that I might share...
You see, a fridge is designed with a door that can be opened 24 hours a day, meaning that it's always there when you need it. That's kind of handy at 3.00am when your head is going crazy and there's no-one else around...
A fridge can't talk, so it can't "give advice" or interrupt you mid-flow. It can't tell the time or walk away either...meaning that you can talk for England if you need too and it won't be going anywhere until that shit is off your chest. No, a fridges job is to basically chill the wine and keep the chocolate safe for when you've finished off-loading and need consolation...
It's the perfect tool for the job.
So he's coming to see me. This amazing "blast from the past" super-cool person of mine.
Because it's going to be amazing.
Me and him. A hotel room somewhere. And an absolute whale of a time guaranteed. All arranged lastminute.com which is always how we roll...
A "Hey _____ I've been thinking. I've missed your face. And I'd really love to come see you again ...are you gonna be free between ____ and _____? (Him)
(Me) "What's there to even think about? Do it. Come see me. Get in the car and get down here...will be amazing. So yes. I'll make sure that I'm free...'cos I've missed your face too..." kind of conversation.
And so he's coming. To see me. In two weeks. I'm turning cartwheels.
Fuck...I'm turning cartwheels.
I need to do a risk assesment...
Mental illness runs in my family.
Addiction and suicide are rife - My fathers side mainly.
I have his hair. And the same blue/grey eyes. I wonder if this counts? That one day this will be enough to tip me over - and I get to join the ranks of all of those who came before me.
They grew up in and out of care my fathers family...Seven institutionalised adults came churning out of the machine after my nan decided that she didn't much like children after all once they'd arrived. I can only imagine the damage that did to them all...I can't even begin to imagine how that must have felt.
Imagine watching a car with no brakes about to hit a brick wall. At 100 mph.
Now imagine that behind the wheel is your best friend. No seatbelt, and seemingly oblivious to the danger in front of her and literally a split second away from self- destruction unless you can do something.....like stop the car.
Which is impossible.
And so all you can do is wait for the inevitable. And hope that she gets out alive....
I was driving that car. And I wanted it to crash. Because it had to. I needed all of the craziness to stop. And so I put my foot down. And kind of closed my eyes....