All that I am, all that I ever was…

I am more than my mental health. I am more than my homelessness. I am more than any one aspect of me. I am Addy. And this is…

Leave a comment

Unsent Letter #3: My life would be empty had you never been in it

The idea for this series came to me last week whilst writing about how social anxiety has affected my life. How my inability to share myself with others prevented me from saying the things I really wanted to say. So, last night, I tore a sheet of paper into 100 pieces and upon each one wrote a name. These names were partners, teachers, acquaintances, ex-work colleagues, family members, old friends and random strangers who made a significant impact on my life.

Each day this week I will draw one of these names at random and then write them a letter.

The only rules for this challenge are:

1) The person will remain anonymous.
2) The letter should include unsaid things I always held back.
3) It shall be written as a sixty minute stream of consciousness. (i.e. no painful seven hour editing sessions, so please excuse any grammar and/or spelling mistakes)

So with all that in mind…[shakes beanie, shakes beanie again, once more for good measure, plunges hand into sea of scrunched up piece of paper, selects, reads name]…okay. Not sure how this one is gonna go down. Hopefully not badly.

5 September 2012

Dear ——–.

Did I ever tell you what I was thinking when I pulled your purple pyjamas off the line? How when the wind began to pick up and the rain threaten to fall, I dashed outside and plucked them from certain drowning in the Hebridean Sea, all because I wanted to see how cute your perfect posterior looked within them.

Yep. You probably thought I was being a modern-day, slightly scruffy Mr Darcy when I saved the pyjamas of a relative stranger from being lost at sea. But nope, I was just thinking of your cute backside and how much I had already begun to fall for its owner.

I’m hoping you know me well enough to know I didn’t fall for you simply because of your quality arse, but in case you don’t, and for the benefit of the blogging audience, I didn’t.

I fell for you the first night we met, the moment you staggered out of the Professor’s car wearing every item of clothing you owned. I fell for you the moment our eyes met and you smiled that contagious smile of yours. By the time we huddled around the fire entertaining ourselves with a dodgy fashion advice book you’d already stolen my heart, so your deliberate sexual pronunciation of breasts and buttocks and bosom and stockings was just torture. But you know that, don’t you?

Did you know I lay in bed that night fantasising about you? How I craved to be the one to slowly peel each layer of clothing from your body? Did I tell you how much we laughed in that fantasy as I removed over a dozen pairs of underwear before finally getting to the good stuff!

Just like with that book, and the drinking game, and the oh-so-take-me-now ”yes please” you whispered under your breath that first night, you knew you had me caught in your splendiferousness.

So much has happened since we last met, since we shared a tea and you quoted Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. So much heartbreak and loss, confusion and darkness, that sometimes I thought nothing would make me smile again. But no matter how wrong it sounds, how weird or pathetic, when things get too much I just allow myself to drift back to the hostel and those first few blissful days.

Even though it’s a sure-fire way to make me cry – happy tears, just like now – it’s also a sure-fire way to make me smile. As they say, you always remember your first time, and I am so grateful that my first time was with someone so understanding, so beautiful, so kind-hearted and whose posterior looked so utterly magnificent in purple pyjamas!

Blimey, so many memories are flooding back right now I think I need to take a moment. I was always a bit soft, you know that, but in recent years tears have become few and far between; I should have known memories of you would bring them back in a heartbeat.

For the last few years my mind has oscillated between anger, frustration, guilt and joy whenever I think of you. Anger because of what you did; frustration because of all I sacrificed; guilt because of the things I never said and joy because, well, you’re you. How could I not feel joy with all we shared?

I hope you won’t mind if I skip the anger and go straight to the guilt. We spent too much time in the anger that year that there is little left to say on the matter. I made mistakes. You made mistakes. We were both human. All I will say is that I’m sorry I didn’t handle the situation better. I’ve returned to those months many times over the last few years and no matter when I do all I see is a man struggling to figure out what was happening. I tried so hard to explain but I could never find the words to get across to you how scared I was. Not because of what happened but because of myself.

That sharp drop into depression obliterated me that year. I didn’t understand it like I do now. I never had. Which is where the guilt comes in – and I need to talk about that, because it’s been eating away at me for years.

It would be a lie to say I’d never wondered if you’d read any of this blog. Back in those early days I thought of it often, worried about how you would take some of the things I wrote. You knew I suffered from depression, and you knew of my early suicidal thoughts, but the self-harm…I’m sorry.

There were so many times during our relationship that I wanted to talk to you about that. To tell you of the things I had done to myself. The day I self-harmed just before Christmas, when I lied to you about burning my hand on the stove, all I wanted you to know was that I had done it to myself; that I wasn’t coping and didn’t know what to do anymore. Perhaps if I’d told you, you could have helped me find help, but I guess that’s what karma is for. It sure did come back to bite me on the ass, I assure you.

For years I convinced myself I hadn’t told you of my self-harm past because I was protecting myself. When I met you I hadn’t self-harmed for over a month, and then there was kissing and sex and experimentation with handcuffs and long walks along the Ness and the urge was gone. I was scared that telling you would trigger me to doing it – and as time went on – it was no longer an issue. Until that day before Christmas. Until 2006.

There’s nothing I can say to alleviate that guilt, of keeping something so intimate from you, but know that I am deeply sorry for the things I never told you of my life. Like I said, if I had maybe I would have got help sooner, but like I said, karma.

Just like October 2007, for which there is no excuse. When I left that suicide letter I was out of my mind. I wasn’t thinking rationally. I wasn’t thinking at all. I barely remember leaving it and, when the psychiatrist at the hospital gave it back to me, I couldn’t even remember writing it.

There was no malice there, ——–, I promise. My mind was broken and I had no idea what I was doing; or the rational irrationality of the suicidal mind, as I have said to myself over the years.

So I’m sorry, truly. The thought that this is your last memory of me is punishment enough.

Then there’s frustration, but I think I’ll skip that as well. You know what I sacrificed for you. I emigrated for you! Through all these years of nothing I keep wondering where my life would be if you’d just told me you didn’t want to be with me anymore.

But then, if I hadn’t come to Australia, we would have missed out on so much happiness. Or, at least I hope they were happy years for you, because I’ve never regretted the time we spent together. All those walks along the beach, the long bike rides around Albert Park, lazy days in the flat and excursions to beautiful places. They fill my heart with such warmth and happiness all the pain of what happened between us dissipates.

And I just find myself remembering that same contagious smile I fell in love with on that distant island almost twelve years ago. And the perfect posterior that looked so edible in whatever you wore!

Okay, starting to sound like Karl Stefanovic, sorry.

The problem with streams of consciousness is that I am bound by the mythical rule of zero editing. If this weren’t such a post I would happily snip all I wrote between the symbols so you would only remember the happy times we shared.

Family aside, dearest ——–, you were the most important person in my life. In many ways, you still are, and given the likelihood I’ll be spending my remaining years alone, you always will be.

You taught me about life, art, literature and – to be crass, but equally true – the female body; both inside and out. You introduced me to a world of music beyond dodgy pop and random Scottish folk. You showed me what it was like to trust someone, to give yourself over to someone so completely that they become the guardian of your soul. You introduced me to the pain of a broken heart, a lesson as equally important as the introduction of love, which you were also responsible for.

My life would be so different had you never emerged in all those layers of clothes from the Professor’s car. Had you not seized control and asked if you could kiss me, nothing would be the same.

Perhaps for the better.

Perhaps not.

Either way, I know my life would be empty had you never been in it.

For all the years of wonder, beauty, love and bliss you gave me, I thank you, from the bottom of my heart. I loved you more than I ever dared to admit and I will continue doing so until my dying day.

I hope you found happiness, my dearest ——–, for my heart would break if you didn’t.

All My Love Always,

Addy xx

1 Comment

026 – 030. Salmagundi, Part 2 (Better late than never!)

Five days ago I was supposed to be catching up with my 365 Day Blog Challenge with two posts, the first one was written and the second, wasn’t. The reason the second wasn’t is because after investing in a half price USB dongle I realised I had invested in a company that provides shoddy-at-best reception and thus have been offline since 2pm on Friday afternoon.

Now I am able to connect again, here is the second post I promised all those days ago, consisting of days 26-30 of the challenge. Enjoy :)

Day 26: 5 things you’re looking forward to

The Dark Knight RisesWhat does an (ex) homeless, affected by mental ill health socially ostracised person have to look forward to? You are indeed correct, the answer is nothing.

Certainly, I could say I look forward to death so this intensely painful existence can finally be over. Plus, I suppose I’m looking forward to the introduction of the carbon tax so I can sit back and watch the majority of middle-class Australian’s realise the apocalypse will not occur as a result of it – even if it means I, part of the sub-human class, will mostly likely become homeless again as a result.

But to conform to the rules of the challenge:

1. The completion of item number one from my Bucket List, as I mentioned here.

2. The Dark Knight Rises. ‘Nuff said :p

3. I look forward to the day where all my hard work, determination, strength and sacrifice pays off and I am no longer haunted by the abuse I suffered so I can live the happy, creative, non-isolated life I deserve.

4. A Legend of Zelda game where Zelda is the primary character, dashing around Hyrule being all acrobatic, daring and adventurous as she races to rescue Link, save Hyrule and defeat the evil that has (once again) taken hold of the land. What’s wrong with a woman saving the day for once? We need more kick-ass heroines in film, TV and video games.

5. The day where there is no such thing as discrimination; where everyone is accepted for who they are, regardless of all.

Day 27: a person you wished lived closer and why

My nephew; so I can meet the wee man and most likely scare him with my quality facial hair.

Day 28: something that makes you really angry

Just one thing?

How can I choose?

The Australian homeless crisis that no-one seems to care about; the devolution of our society into a self-obsessed, narcissistic cesspit where only the self matters; the appalling mental health treatment I have received throughout my life; discrimination; the appalling stereotypes reinforced by Fifty Shades of Grey; the price of electricity and other household necessities; reality television…

…fine, if I have to choose only one thing?

There is only thing that makes me angrier than abuse. To control, deceive, manipulate, belittle, lie, beat and destroy a human being is a deplorable, despicable act. To support, justify and defend such a person is inexcusable, making abuse sympathisers the thing that makes me most angry in this world.

Day 29: a date you’d love for someone to take you on

I can’t answer this question as it is likely to illicit some form of anxiety fuelled depressive period. Sorry, but to imagine things that I want, that are never likely to happen, is painful for me. The trauma from the abuse, social anxiety, my distrust of the human race and the discrimination against the homeless means I will unlikely never be on a date again, regardless of much I yearn for a candlelit dinner, spontaneous picnic under the stars or an evening at the theatre followed by lively artistic debate over a few glasses of wine and a chocolate pastry.

Day 30: 5 favorite girls names, 5 favorite boys names

Aurora Borealis, the colored lights seen in th...When I come to create a character I never start with their name. I begin by writing a short biography of their life as I dislike writing about someone without knowing them personally; where they were born, who their parents were, whether they have any siblings, major incidents (if any) of their childhood, how and to whom they lost their virginity (I’m a stickler for details) and continue onwards through any events that shaped who they are; their belief structure, moral standpoint and ethical values.

Once I have a full understanding of how they became the person up to the commencement of the story, I look at where their life is headed over the course of the plot and then bestow them a name that reflects who they were and what they will become.

For example;

Alexander; origin, Greek; form of Alexandros; meaning, defender of mankind.
One of the easiest characters to name given his character arc from birth to death. Born in Inverness to an abusive father, Alex overcomes an introverted, traumatic childhood to become a protective yet conflicted soul who ultimately dies at his own hand before achieving his prophesied destiny of saving the world.

Douglas; origin, Gaelic; form of, Dubhghlas; meaning, Black Water.
Pseudonym of Shay, and as with all of this character’s self-chosen nom-de-plumes derives from Gaelic to reflect (a) his heritage and (b) his state of mind at the choosing of the pseudonym.

Natalie; origin, Italian; form of, Natalia; meaning, Christ’s birthday.
Deciding on a name for my quintessential girl-next-door character was tough. It needed to be bland yet special as well as hint toward the culmination of her character arc.

Nothing too unique about this, most writers do the same thing, it was just especially important to me as names feature heavily in early folklore and myth (that’s old magic) and as the Chronicles were initially forged in this area I decided names should be important elements of my work.

As such, most of my favourite names appear in some form or another in the Chronicles.

My five favourite girls names:

Kira origin, Gaelic; form of, Ciara; meaning, little dark one.

Kathryn origin, Greek; form of, Katherine; meaning, pure.

Tara origin, Gaelic; form of, Teamhair; meaning, Craig; hill.

Gwendolyn origin, Welsh; form of, Gwendolen; meaning, white ring.

Aurora origin, Latin; form of, itself (Aurora); meaning, dawn.

My five favourite boys names:

Rowan origin, Gaelic; form of, itself (Rowan); meaning, little red one.

Magnus origin, Latin; form of, itself (Magnus); meaning, great.

Sawyerorigin, English; form of, itself (Sawyer); meaning, one who chops wood.

Alexander see above

Mackay origin, Gaelic; form of, itself (Mackay); meaning, son of the fiery one.