Episode 54 – Sexual (Re)Possession… And A Happy New Year

Feeling disillusioned. If this were Omniscient Social Networking Site that would be my lead on a new status update. But we’re here on WordPress so I guess I’d better use some of the many words hurled at me throughout my education instead of emojis.

I’m waiting for my hair to dry. My hair took out a barring order on hairdryers unsupervised by professionals with good brushes, straightening irons and skills enough to tame this mop that sprang (sprung?) out of the genetic wilderness. So it takes a good three hours before it’s really dry and during that time I have an excuse to remain indoors, as if I need one.

The last few days have brought a dip. I know why too, in my self-analytical amateur psychologist role.

I haven’t written in a few days. A quick Interlude about men which was really just bullshit.

I didn’t want to write. I didn’t want to talk. My Lady knows I’ve nosedived, well that’s probably a bit dramatic, sagged. She’s been asking be constantly if I’m ok. How am I doing? Am I not great today? Am I up to this? I tried to go into screen saver mode and just get through everything. I got through everything. I can get through stuff now and not have to flake off, which is good. It still drained me though. But gin helps.

I hope to fuck I’m not turning to the drink. That crutch has been passed down through the generations. I always worry about this every time I go through a couple of weeks of having a couple of drinks a night.

Today has been tough, for everyone. I’m working backwards here. My mood hit a metaphorical rock on Saturday, today is Tuesday (as far as I can tell with the twelve days of Christmas morphfest). Today marked thirteen years since my father walked out on my mother. And me.

Splitiversary.

I was twenty: it was three weeks before my twenty-first. ElsaDaughter was heading for two. My mother had put him through college: supported him, financially and emotionally – he’s an odd, very withdrawn character – through his mature academic adventure and career change and it seems as soon as he got sorted with degree transcripts and a permanent, pensionable job in education, he was off. I’m still so fucking annoyed with him. And myself, I’m more like him than I care to admit. He ruined the mother I was just getting to know after I’d become a mother myself. It took eight or nine years to get her back. Today was a reminder of all that rage. Walking on eggshells. I’m glad today is over. I’m glad this year is nearly over.

Stupidly, and for no other reason than I was awake at stupid o’ clock, I flicked onto Very Well Known Property App With A Silly Name and found my old house, up for sale: repainted beyond recognition and on the market for half the price we paid for it in 2005, three months before My Husband and I tied the noose, I mean knot.

My lovely house. Now back in the hands of the bank from whence it came.

The walls are stripped of my heritage green and the warm mustard yellow in ElsaDaughter’s bedroom. The yard is unkempt: no paddling pool, no dogs, no little swing; the kitchen is bare of plants desperately trying to stay alive in the absence of a green fingered housewife. All the pictures, the books, the knick knacks – gone. Don’t get me wrong: I was the one who walked out. I broke up the family and the family home. I was no angel. I fucked up too. Husband and I made a right royal jelly of the whole thing when we threw our troubled lots in together.

Then I went for a fast walk to clear my head, the next day, not on the night I couldn’t sleep. If I went missing in the middle of the night from this house (I’m still at home), Benedict Cumberbatch would be donning his pale-faced, glassy eyed Sherlock disguise and be out looking for me.

Even the dog has now abandoned me. AnnaPuppy is asleep in her pen and Sven has just fucked off upstairs to My Lady and ElsaDaughter where he stuck his head under the covers trying to hide from me when I tried to get him to come back down with me.

It seems my current miserable form with boys is spreading to the four leggeds too.

There’s a box of sweets beside me. I want to eat the whole thing, even the coffee ones. And I hate coffee. I’ve spent the day in my sweats. I’m a squidgy lump. Christmas chocolates are not the answer.

On aforementioned walk, I had the misfortune to be walking against a long line of post-sales traffic emerging from the local shopping centre and you know yourself, I couldn’t help but look into some of the cars as I passed.
A few familiar faces. A wave or two.

And then, looking straight ahead as if I were completely fucking blending into the bridge railings standing between me and a high tide in his shiny happy people carrying SUV was… what to call him? Boy? Man? Penis? Shoulders? Arms? Maybe if I just refer to him as a body part it won’t seem so… personal. The Winner of The Thing That Happened. I guess that’s good enough. Appropriate anyway. I was definitely the loser (in more ways than one) in that particular teenage melodrama. He was eligible to vote.

The blankness of his face. It was like there was nothing behind it. Just a face attached to a bulk of hands and shoulders and arms and knees and…

Nothing. Not a flicker.

Had he forgotten? Does he remember it differently? Does he know what I am now?

Did he not see me? There, wretching on the near freezing air and drowning in the flooding stench of wet grass.

For some reason I kept walking even though I knew that my intended route (I needed to drop something off at my beauty therapist’s – rape victims don’t always let themselves go dowdy you know) would take me past the location of The Thing That Happened and also past the house of my best friend who cleaned me up that night.

Why didn’t I turn around? I could have driven over there later: the protection of a car windscreen, a loud radio and the necessity to keep your eyes on the road can do wonders to distract you from a nondescript hut (apart from a memorial cross of a man killed there years ago. I’ve just realised the significance of that now. A black cross. Not a lucky spot, obviously) of which I doubt anyone in town really knows the function.

I felt like I was retracing the steps I took that night, although I recall only the initial movement away from his laughter and then my head flashes to an image of a young me, pathetic, in a bath with a red checkered dress on, even though that’s not what I was wearing that night. Why does my mind change my outfit? The dress I see myself in afterwards was one of my favourites. It was also the dress I was wearing when I went off kissing a guy at a family wedding and nobody could find me. He was pushy and older and I remember him sitting on a toilet telling me he’d wear two condoms while I struggled to remain polite and quiet in my refusal, hearing my dad calling my name outside the room in the hotel grounds, not knowing how to extricate myself without upsetting anyone from the situation.

How the fuck do I get myself into these jams?

I can’t blame anyone else but myself.

The last few days, with a super crappy date on Sunday night – he looked not just disappointed but repulsed by me; he had nothing to say to me – and a general feeling of the post-Christmas blues (even though I’m glad it’s over and I can try structure a routine for myself next week) mixed in with Old House/The Winner sighting, have been like a migraine on a day you had lovely, sunny plans that you’d been looking forward to for yonks that you really can’t cancel to stay in bed, cover your head and wish it would rain and swallow you up; burying you unconscious in a warm dark bed of earthy dirt. Ruined but unavoidable.

Two people have said they don’t understand my poems. That means they must be super bullshitty. I hope I haven’t come across as a Joycean, because I haven’t a clue what Joyce was in about, or worse, a Yeats clone with high falutin’ spiritual nonsense bewildering everyone who harked for September 1913, the poem, not the Lockout.

I just spilt a bottle of water on myself and the chair in which I had just got comfortable. I look like I’ve weed myself. I’m not that scared of these memories.

If I’m not careful I’ll fall asleep on the sofa in my wet bum sweat pants. They’d surely section me then?

I had planned to edit and post this tonight but my head is in some sort of clamp; my eyes are puffy and my stomach is producing bile that is encircling my cardiac system and trying to snake up my oesophagus to choke me on my own self-disgust.
I couldn’t be bothered getting it up tonight: the post, not the bile.

I’ve been a poor friend to The Artist who’s been ill; a poor support to My Lady who needed me today – I did try, I just had no more convincing masques in my Try To Seem Normal So They Won’t Ask Questions Closet.

I caved and went to bed after this. It’s now five thirty am and I can’t find the cornflakes. I never eat cornflakes but the retro Norman Rockwell box made them somehow taste like the early mornings of sick days off school in this house. Childhood chest and ear infection days when I was bundled up on the sofa with a choice of cartoons and any amount of Nana’s squeezed oranges with hot water and sugar. Miss Marple used to give us butter and brown sugar for coughs; why I have no idea other than to coat every artery with cholesterol and provide a short lived boost of energy. But then she also used to make us gargle with TCP although I escaped the castor oil she forced down the necks of her own kids.

Anyway, no cornflakes to be found. The box was huge and couldn’t be empty already? The dogs, probably.

One year, on New Year’s Eve, I woke up with chicken pox having contracted it while working in a Montessori school during my Christmas break from my first year in college. I still went out that night. So that sudden surge in chicken pox in January 1999? Sorry, my bad.

I just found the cornflakes in a food saver, no sign of Rockwell’s box. Now they’re just regular, boring cornflakes.

I’ve just researched (googled Wikipedia – now there’s a phrase that wouldn’t have meant anything in 1999) Norman Rockwell’s World War Two stuff because I had Rosie the Riveter in my head as being his. Turns out the famous “We Can Do It” wasn’t his at all: his was the one in the cover image of this post, held back from wider mass public circulation due to sticky copyright issues. I’ve attached the link in case you’re an information junkie like me.

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rosie_the_Riveter#

There’s loads about real life Rosies I didn’t know. Dr. (I never decided I’d like her better if she called herself Mrs.) Abbey Bartlett would be proud of my little Nellie Bly moment. Only true constituents of “The West Wing” will get that. In joke. )

So I slept till three in the afternoon after I went back to bed.

I had horrible dreams about Quarter Pounder and losing keys to a second car of mine that I had parked in the function room of the local hotel; not being allowed in to use the showers of a service station (this was not reality, don’t question the logic) to get myself washed up for a wedding I was due at and I was filthy from the SaltScrubs. My old apartment also featured. How this mess of memories melded into a cold damp broken nightmare of powerlessness I don’t know. I’m always helpless in my dreams.

I’ve decided to stay in tonight. I’m also staying down “home home” and not going back to the city. I say “decided” but to be honest I had no offers to do anything and I was quite happy not to pursue any leads.

I couldn’t be arsed shaving my legs, putting make up on, let alone going out and being sociable. This year doesn’t deserve a good send off. This year deserves to go out with a little whimper drowned in gin.

I’ve been thinking a lot about that poor family in Cobh. Apparently, the man had been signed off quite recently as not being a danger anymore. I don’t know all the facts. But I do feel angry that another family has suffered and lost so much seemingly because of an underfunded, scantily personneled mental health service in this country. Yes, things like this will happen, anywhere. Not everyone can be saved. But it seems things like this happen too often on our small island.

Reports of the Christmas spike in domestic violence have also impaled my sense of justice.

What’s wrong with this country? The mentally ill, women and children seem to remain runners up in the competition for political airtime and social funding.

For some unknown psychological reason the Redwood trees in a small coastal village in South Co. Down rooted themselves in my active memory last night. I have bittersweet memories of that village. Father Rory Best’s family was hard to navigate but the location was immensely uplifting one you got outside the boiled potato kitchen of Catholic righteousness. Those redwoods (I know nothing about trees) were majestic, towering, implacable, solid, real.

I’m not going to fall into the trap of making New Year’s resolutions. I’m too tired. Maybe tomorrow I’ll wake up energised and ready to face another year. Right now, I couldn’t really care less if we all diffused into a sprinkle of glitter at midnight. But I guess I’ll wake up tomorrow, at some point during the day, and have a shower. I guess that’s a good enough start to 2015.

So 2014, you can go fuck yourself, you life blood vampire.

Slice of lime in that gin please.

Happy New Year folks. Honestly, you reading my drivel has given me some purpose in a Zolpidem strewn wasteland. Cheers and merci buckets. X x

Dotty 💋

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