Phoenix Fights

Fighting the FEAR, depression and BDP on a daily basis AND making my own bread. Bring it on 2016….


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SEVERANCE

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It seems to me that going past the dreaded 50th birthday landmark makes people want to start digging around in their past to find out what has happened to whom, on a far too regular basis.

And if I were to hazard a guess why this phenomenon takes place, I would say that the unfulfilled, regretful and bored empty nesters tend to do this because they want to either compare themselves with their old schoolmates, hook up with some old boyfriend/girlfriend, or simply try and recapture their long lost youth by reminiscing about the old days.

Those of you who know me may have gathered that I’m not a fan of anything or anyone from my past re-emerging into MY present, uninvited.  They’d be about as welcome as one of my forty odd year old stools popping up in the loo, Mr Hanky stylee shouting ‘Howdy ho!  Guess who?’  

Ever the bridge burner, cutter offer and drawer of lines under the past, I like to past lovers/friends/employers to remain in the parallel universe they occupy and stay the hell outta Sistaville.

They have their country, I have mine.

They have their county, I have mine.

They have their borough, I have mine,

They have their street, I have mine.

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OK, so I do know that I’m rapidly running out Sista only territory (hence my fondness of pseudonyms), and I don’t have any lifelong friends so I’m pretty lonely hence it might not have been the best life coping strategy to adopt, but it’s a bit late for this old bitch to learn new tricks.

Well, that’s debatable I guess as ‘networking’ <shudders> is something I’m going to need to embrace moving forward according to the dreaded ‘book’, but what I didn’t welcome or accept is an unwelcome blast from the past knocking on my cyber door the other day.

Some woman whose name I’d never heard of tried to ‘friend’ me on Facebook.

I didn’t recognise her face, we didn’t have friends in common, so I was about to reject her and move on, when I noticed that she used to go to the same school as me.

Curious I had a look at her profile with something akin to dread churning in my stomach.  Of course I recognised the Christian name, but this was 40 years ago, so how was I supposed to know if it was her or not?

Then I saw the old 70’s photo of her family that she must have scanned and uploaded, and immediately knew it was Sally B.

The only close friend I had in my childhood.

The very same friend who fucked me off when I started getting bullied and picked on at senior school.

Well she actually picked a fight with me over a necklace but we both knew that she manufactured it as an excuse to break away from me, or only see me when her popular new friends weren’t around.  What she didn’t bank on though was my uncanny ability to totally cut off from people and, if encountering them again in public, being able to look through them as if they were a pane of glass and/or a piece of shit in the street.  And given that I was geeky and she was cool, Sal was very indignant about my coldness, so sent her younger brother out to beat me up, and he kicked the hell out of me.

We had been friends since we were about 6, which is pretty much a lifetime when you are 12 years old, so the break up felt like the end of the world, as it was the ultimate betrayal and indeed full confirmation to me that no one, but NO ONE could be trusted.

Over the years I got my own back.

I got contact lens and bleached my hair.  I became skinny, sexy and cool.  I had a very hot boyfriend.  I hung out with a band.  I moved to London.  I brought home an even hotter boyfriend.  I had expensive clothes.  I went to all the best clubs in London.  I travelled the world.  Well I got beyond Costa del Chipshop which is probably more than she ever did.

And whilst I don’t remember her seeing me in all my punky/new romantic, trendy, hot other half glory, Shitsville was a small town and I’m pretty damn sure she got to hear about it all.   Especially when I turned up to mass one Easter, Siouxie Sue’d up to the eyeballs, in leathers with my hot Italian Catholic BF (his idea, not mine) and stunned the entire congregation.

So fuck her and market stall clothes, her chavvy boyfriend, her lame job and predictable, shitty small town life.

As the years have gone by, whilst I still have some family oop North, I rarely find myself in that neck of the woods, so I pretty much forgot all about her.

Until now.

And before you say it, I KNOW.

We were only kids.  And kids are horrible.

But being a fucked up, BPD, revenge loving bitch, I find to my surprise that I still hate her.  And her horrible family.  Just looking at that photo makes my lip curl with contempt.

And as I scrutinise her profile I see she is friends with a few of the other thuggish bitches that made my life an utter misery all those years ago.  And I smile cruelly to myself at the way they look, the clothes they are wearing, the jobs they are (or mainly are not) doing, and inwardly jeer at their appalling grammar, shit taste in music, middle aged outlook and the fact that yes, they are still living in Shitsville and probably will for the rest of their days.

And I wonder what the fuck she thinks we have to say to one another after all these years.  Does she remember what she did? Is she sorry?  What she couldn’t possibly know is that she was my first ever severance.  And whilst over the years, I could do it with nary a flicker of emotion, as we all know, the first cut is the deepest, and losing the only person on the same wavelength as me at such a tender age was like losing a limb.

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So, to be perfectly honest, whilst I’d like to say I’d rise above it, I don’t know if I’d be able to stop myself from being horrible to her if we did enter into some kind of dialogue.

So much for my Tutu approved Forgiveness course.  Sorry Des 😦  It is pretty apparent to me now, like diet and exercise, I am going to have to work on this deeply challenging skill for the rest of my life, because I hate how this ugly emotion makes me feel inside.

So for now, I think it best to ignore her and move on, as, if I can only look back in anger, it’s best not to look back at all.

‘And so, Sally can wait….’

Sorry…couldn’t resist that…. 😉

Namaste x

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EAR WORM No. 19 – Style Council – HAVE YOU EVER HAD IT BLUE

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This is one of those songs that you hear out of the blue on the radio and immediately reach out to turn the volume up.

‘Have You Ever Had It Blue’ by the irrepressible Paul Weller’s ‘Style Council’ nearly made it to my Optimistic Mix list, but only just missed out because the lyrics aren’t exactly, well,  jolly.

http://www.metrolyrics.com/have-you-ever-had-it-blue-lyrics-the-style-council.html

However, please don’t let that put you off having a listen fellow depressives, because as soon as that brass section kicks off in the opening bars, all you really want to do is get up and shake yo stuff.

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In fact, humour me and let this be the first song you hear on Monday morning, I guarantee it will brighten up your day.

Promise. 🙂

This song harks back to the days when I wore far too much make up, partied hard, slept little and was 100% in denial that there was anything wrong with me.  It was everyone else’s fault if they couldn’t handle me, not mine.

And you know what?  Whilst I kinda miss ignorant bliss, recognising your shit, and getting to know the true self is actually the only love worth fighting for.

So I trudge on in full awareness of my crazy, fucked up self.

And I breathe….

Namaste x


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MOTHER OF MINE

 

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Being both motherless and childless, it’s a rare occurrence indeed if Mothering Sunday impacts on me in any way whatsoever.

For Mother’s Day is, quite literally, a non event in my life.

I send nor receive gifts on this day unless you count the huge soggy fur ball I found in one of my slippers this morning, courtesy of one of my fluffy family (and I’m not talking about my rather hirsute sister).
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Back when I had a life, the penny only tended to drop when I couldn’t get a table at my favourite restaurant for Sunday lunch.  Damn those smug mommas and their guilt ridden offspring depriving me of my roast beef with all the trimmings with their once-a-year token gestures!

The other common ‘tell’ was the unavailability of my friends on that day, as they either had a mum to visit, kids to treat them, or some are lucky enough to have both.

And of course, it’s hard to miss it completely when the shops are literally bulging with cards, roses, chocolates and teddies (what grown woman wants a teddy?!), but fortunately for me, the only parent in my life is the ‘Good Parent’, that oh so familiar PAC model that I’m meant to invoke when I’m being shit to myself, and she/he don’t deserve nuffin as I rarely see even them anyway.

When I was a kid though, I was usually coerced into schlepping down to the newsagents for some Milk Tray for my darling maman regardless, as you did as you were told or got a clip around the earhole for insubordination if you stepped out of line in our house.

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At the time, I remember some warbling, simpering brat called Neil Reid brought out a diabetes inducing, nauseatingly sentimental single entitled ‘Mother of Mine’ which made me want to honk up my Weetabix every time it came on the radio or Top of the Pops.

Allow me to share some of the lyrics with you:

“Mother of mine, you gave to meee

All of my life, to do as I please

I owe everything I have to you

Mother, sweet Mother of mine”

I have spared you the pain of listening to it by not uploading the song, but I’m sure it can be found on YouTube if you want the ultimate earworm de jour ringing in your pinna.

Suffice to say, little Neil and I did not share the same idyllic childhood.

So why do I feel so sad today?  Where is my usual indifference?

Whilst I can’t be sure, I strongly suspect BBC2’s showing of ‘We Need To Talk About Kevin’ last night may have struck a cord.   Great timing Auntie Beeb, you soppy, sentimental old harridan you…

Not, can I stress, that I totally relate to the Kevin character, as I have yet to be seen running around sarf London terrorising my neighbours with a crossbow, poison tipped arrows and the ‘Robin Hood’ theme tune pumping into my iPod headphones.

But I strongly suspect that the character’s earlier years mirror mine.

I don’t think I was as horrendous a brat as little shark eyed Kev, but I must have been bad enough for her to dislike me so.

I know I could have been cold, aloof and when pushed hard enough, I could transform passive aggression into a war like art form.

Because as a kid in 1960’s/70’s working class Britain, that was your only weapon, unless you wanted a good hiding.

But I wasn’t as good at it as Kev.  Yes, I think we did the ‘tit for tat’, ‘who can hurt who the most’ thing.  But I was only a kid.  And it hurt.   I hurt.  She had the power, and she knew it.

But as a adult AND my mother, she should have known better.

But maybe she couldn’t help it.  And maybe she loved me deep down, even if she never liked me and hated me sometimes.

I think the hardest thing of all is to admit that there were some good times, which I choose to block out, such is my bitterness and desire to allocate blame, so I can’t paint her as a total demon.

I just have to think hard about what they were.

Once upon a time, on Mother’s Days past, I used to try and be how she wanted me to be so that, dead or alive, she might like me more.  I’d not swear for the day, be ‘ladylike’ (whatever that means), not get into arguments and think about how to be a better person.

The irony that I’m trying to do this now via this ‘no holds barred’, profane, gut spilling on line blog/diary is not lost on me at all.

But I am praying again.

Perhaps not in the way that you would like or appreciate Mum, but hell you can’t have everything, woman!  As Popeye once said  ‘I yam what I yam, and that’s all that I yam, and whilst I was never your cup of cha, and I am open to evolving and hopefully finding out what the fuck, sorry, hell God put me here for, I cannot and will not be anything other than 100% authentically myself.

There is much healing to be done here, and I very much doubt it will all be worked out today, but in the spirit of Mother’s Day, I will tell you at least 10 THINGS I liked about my Mum

1.  She was a great cook and made sure we were well fed

2.  She used to let me put her curlers in and do her hair sometimes

3.  We watched black and white movies together.  Usually tear jerkers.  In retrospect, I have no doubt in my mind that she, like me, was depressive

4.  She taught me to make Sunday lunch

5.  She loved animals and animals loved her

6.  She rarely drank and was hilarious when she got tipsy on ONE half of shandy.  Even I’m not that much of a lightweight.

7.  She’d give the dog a toffee so she could laugh her ass off at him trying to lick it off his teeth

8.  I think she once told me I had pretty hair

Shit.  I’m struggling now.

9.  Whilst usually passive, she would occasionally put my Dad right back in his place when he pissed her off enough

10. She once stood and watched me as I slept and leant over to stroke my face.  She must have just found out that she didn’t have long to live.  Typical me, even as I slumbered, I consciously, deliberately turned my face away.

I wish I hadn’t now.

She must have been so afraid.  But I didn’t know or wouldn’t believe she was dying.  I can’t remember which.

The day before she died, I walked to the hospital to visit her, and as all mums do, she clutched at my hands and fussed and berated me for not wearing enough clothes (‘yawn’ thought belligerent teenager moi), and pleaded with me to wrap up warm in future.

I never saw her again.

And on the day she died, I felt like my heart had been ripped out.

I think my mum, like Eva, tried harder with me when I was older, but by then, like Kevin, the damage was done.

What hell it is not to be loved for who you are.

What hell it must have been to not love your offspring.

Mum, wherever you are, I never stopped loving you and I forgive you for being who you were and that you tried to love me as much as my sister.

Anyway you have to admit, I could have been a whole lot worse than I was, and lets face it, if Eva and Kevin can hug it out after everything that transpired between them, maybe there’s hope for us when our paths cross again.

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Happy Mother’s Day xx

P.S.  If ‘wrapping up warm’ was an Olympic event, I’d have a glass case of gold medals by now.  No one does it better.

 

 

EVERY NIGHT IN MY ROOM

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When, like me, you live a life where you are exposed to little stimulus and pleasure (being outdoors, sex, social interaction etc.), something simple like a smell, a taste sensation, a performance or a life affirming song can send you and your emotions flying through the roof.

So after 2 plus hours of watching the half good half wank fest that was this year’s Brits last night, wincing at the terrible presenter, blushing at the pretentious posturing of a certain Northern Monkey and the sad appearance of a stoned, ageing model dressed in one of Bowie’s old cast offs still trying to be down with the kids, the final performance featuring Pharrell, Niles, a gospel choir AND Northern Soul dancers sent my heart and spirit soaring.

You see, I love Nile Rodgers, I love Pharrell’s ‘Happy’, I love gospel singers, and most of all, I LOVE Northern Soul.

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I was never actually involved in the Wigan Casino scene back in the day though; I was too young, speccy, geeky and uncool, and my parents would never have let me go there. But I danced it at a local youth club and loved watching the louche, show boating males nonchalantly doing their solo thing, seemingly indifferent to the rag cut cropped girls swirling around them in their Fred Perry tops and Oxford bags, trying to get their attention (although they’d soon glance up when treated to the occasional flash of bare thigh) but it never even occurred to me to try and be a part of that scene, as by then I knew it was better not to be noticed, better to fly under the radar and be invisible than be noticed, bullied, mocked and ridiculed.

But my longing could have built a super, multi story dance venue all on it’s own.

And 40 years on, I felt the age old pang of desire as I watched this new generation replicate the steps, and I just had to do what I always do when I get excited about something; spout about it on social media, hunt it down on YouTube, frantically search for additional material and generally try and stay high on it for as long as I can. I suppose it’s kind of like a bipolar buzz, as I get obsessed, very verbose and am very glad I’m alone and not getting on people’s nerves too much.

This time I found out where Pharrell got his inspiration from, a young woman called Northern Soul Girl who ended up dancing on stage with him, presumably by way of reward. I’ve watched this video at least ten times, on my iPad in my room, greedily imbibing her cuteness, skill, confidence, youth and choice of music with my eyes, wishing that somehow, some way I could go back to my teens and be just like her. Full of youth, appetite, hope, and of course happy.

Trouble was I wasn’t like that when I was young. I was either in some turbulent relationship, hiding behind some useless bloke, or, like I am now, sitting my room, alone, wishing I had the courage to live a little.  And again, if enough longing could change the past, I’d be back there, on the dance floor, swirling, twirling, taking my courage in both hands and making myself accepted by them.

But it’s too late.

That said, tomorrow is another day.

Today I went for an induction at a local mental health charity, and I’m going back to try and work for a day next week.

On the negative side, the stress of putting myself out there exhausted me, hence bailed on what I was meant to be doing tonight.

But tomorrow?

Tomorrow I dance.

And I will, if only for a couple of hours, feel like a room without a roof.

I may even get lucky! 😉

Namaste x

EVERYTHING GIVES YOU CANCER, I KNOW THIS MUCH IS TRUE

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Tony Hadley was on breakfast TV this morning, promoting his new whatever, and because it is Valentines Day, they played out with Spandau Ballet’s iconic, romantic hit single “True”.

And as always, I turned it off. Not because I’m single/lonely/bitter and twisted.

It’s because, for me hearing that song always reminds me of the day that love died.

My Mum didn’t love me. I know that much is true. Well if she did, I certainly couldn’t feel it, and she definitely didn’t like or approved of me. For most of the years we were together we were at loggerheads because I knew in my gut that I wasn’t what she wanted or expected, and the fact that she blatantly favoured my sister.

Hence the memory of our time together is peppered and scarred by her inherent disgust and excoriating criticism of me, my desperate attempts to force her to love me, my bruising, bloodied war with my sister, and throughout it all, my Mum telling me she loved me as much as her when interrogated, hissing her affirmations through gritted teeth, her eyes shining with impatience and hatred, and my howls of anguish at the unfairness and loneliness of it all.

So after years of being eaten away by cancer, on the day I was told that she had died, I had to be pinned to the floor by my cousin, such was my pain, rage, sorrow and defiance at God for tearing her from me before her time, before she made me feel like I really mattered.

Then, in a matter of minutes, something inside me went cold and impervious.  I got up, dried my tears, absorbed my rage within myself, and did the dutiful daughter thing.

I cleaned up, organised the funeral, baked for the wake, bought something black and severe to match my charred bubbling fury, and put her in the ground.  And on that day, when my father finally told me he loved me, I looked at him coldly and thought ‘No, you don’t.  You’re just scared of being without her’.

And that was the week that “True” was number one in the charts.   Also, flying high was New Wave/Punk artist Joe Jackson with his album Night and Day which my sister played incessantly, especially the particularly delightful and timely track “Cancer” (or was that me?  I honestly can’t remember), so what with the radio playing Spandau every hour, and my or my sister’s perverse choice of music de jour, the two tracks merged into some sort of twisted mash up, which went:

‘Everything gives you cancer, uh oh oh, OH uh, there’s no cure, there’s no answer, I know this much is true….’

And I hated them, I hated her, I hated him, and I especially hated HER, but most of all, I hated myself.  And to be honest?  If I’d have known you during that dark, endless, excruciating week, I’d have probably hated you too.

No offence 😦

You wouldn’t have noticed though.  You would just have seen a haughty, thin, distant Easter Island statue of a girl with the closed off, haunted eyes of someone far older than her nineteen years.

You still wouldn’t have wanted to be around me though.  You would have sensed the poison, the badness, the ugliness, the faults and the failings.  Because if my own Mother couldn’t love me, there must have been something fundamentally wrong with me.

Over thirty years have passed since that day, and over the decades and via painful experience, I know more and I know better.  For the most part. But that hasn’t stopped my self loathing sabotaging every relationship I ever had, and every potential relationship from growing into something to treasure.

When people said ‘You have to love yourself  before anyone else can love you’ I would think ‘Bollocks.’  Plenty of good looking, rich, famous, successful, sexy fuck ups have found someone to love them and be with them.  Or at least that’s how it appears from the outside looking in.

I do however think it’s the only way forward for me.  Because if you love yourself, at least someone loves you. And maybe, just maybe, I’ll be able to let more love into my life if/when I get there.

Valentine’s Day isn’t usually a biggie for me.  I’m not one of those women who bemoans my singleness, sends myself flowers/cards/chocolates to prove to others that I’m loveable, or acknowledge/celebrate it by going to an anti Valentines event, something I’ve always found bemusing.

I have bigger fish to fry.

My salvation doesn’t depend on another homosapien with a penis.

It’s down to me.

So today, I’ll mostly be doing loving things for myself.  Nurturing my mind, body and soul, and opening my scarred and battered heart and soul to the possibility that it is not too late to love and be loved, in all of it’s aspects, guises and manifestations, and I invite you to do the same.

As, whether you are single or not, there are worse things that you could do for yourself in the next 24 hours and beyond.

So I send you big love this Valentines Day and hope you are surrounded by the love of your family/friends/partner, and most of all the love of that spark of light that ignites and dwells within us all.

Namaste x

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TOMORROW

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I am invited to a funeral tomorrow.

It’s the funeral of my friend’s mother, a lovely lady whom I met only once, but whilst seriously physically debilitated, kindness, fun and mischief shone out of her eyes, and I liked her hugely and immediately, along with her husband who is an absolute sweetheart.

But one meeting does not constitute a friendship so I was surprised to receive the invitation.

And I was torn.

Torn between the fear of going into a church and sitting through a funeral and torn between wanting to support my friend.

So I told her ‘If you need me there so support you in any capacity, I’m there.’

But she said ‘Sista, I’ll be in my own world tomorrow and surrounded by my family, and we will support each other but my Father wanted to invite you, so you are more than welcome to come.’

Was surprised and touched to hear that, but am guessing he was moved by the message I sent him about his wife now being with God.  I hope this is true, and that someone was there to greet her, but if nothing else, I know she is at peace and free of the shackles of her broken down physical form which must have at times felt like a prison.

But I won’t be going.

Because I’m frightened.

Frightened because I do not belong.

Frightened to talk to strangers who may ask who I am and what I do (nothing being the answer to both questions).

Frightened because I don’t like funerals.  I have been to too many of my own over the last 50 years.

Frightened because I’m worried I might cry, and if I cry I might never stop.

Because it’s all there, bulging away inside me, tightening my chest, blocking up my throat and causing my head to pound.

A lifetime of tears that I am still unable to shed.

Plus I’m not exactly friends with the Man Upstairs right now and I’m frightened that if I enter those hallowed walls that I’ll start to burn and crisp like Damian from the Omen in a hot deep fat fryer, and my friend and her family can well do without having to scape a soggy, weeping, totally overcome Sista off the floor with a dustpan and brush, or put out my blazing, cursing form with the church fire extinguisher or drive a stake through my heart at the alter.

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But clearly I need to cry.  I rarely cry.  And I think that was why I didn’t get that Sexual Abuse Helpline job all those months ago.

But I absolutely hate it.  I’m incapable of shedding tears without feeling like a weak, vulnerable loser.

But maybe I’ll watch The Green Mile or something, and offload in the privacy and comfort of my own home.  But what I won’t do is make a complete show of myself and embarrass my friend at the funeral of that lovely lady.

So I tell her that I won’t be attending and immediately feel like a pathetic coward and a bad friend.

And then a light came on in my head.

I can give them the cakes and bakes I made for the market!  And when my friend accepts this offer with gratitude I feel that I have at least done something to make their day easier.

This is my second day at home in isolation.

I could, should, go out and do something with the day, which is already half over.

And do what? Spend money I haven’t got?  Walk in the freezing cold for the sake of walking? Go to the cinema on my own?

No way.  I’ll do something tomorrow.  Honest I will, Guv.  But today, I’m doing fuck all.

Tomorrow, tomorrow, I loves ya, tomorrow, thank God you’re a day away.


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NEW ZEALAND LAMB

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I’m in the middle of a yoga class this morning, eyes closed, trying to make my glutes relax so I can ease into the movement, and I suddenly find myself in a Tony Soprano ‘Funhouse’ style dream sequence, where I’m walking along a beach side promenade and I suddenly see a handsome young man in a leather jacket smiling at me from the dilapidated window frame of a run down, long vacated ice cream shop.

I know his face but I cannot for the life of me remember where from.

He’s smiling warmly, but in a flash my stomach flips with dread.

Who is he?

Something feels very wrong.

This is probably why I avoid yoga so frequently, as my mind seems to take advantage of my stillness and use it as an opportunity to Spring clean my psyche and drag out shit from my past for me to sort through.  ‘Urgh, look at this!’ it shrieks, hurling something quite disgusting out of the attic which lands with a thud at my feet, ‘do you really want to keep this?!’

The bastard.

I can still hear my teacher’s instructions which I manage to follow on auto pilot, but I’m frantically searching through my inner archives trying to figure out what’s going on.

Nada.

‘…bring one leg into your chest, and straighten the other to the floor….’

I look back at this apparition with some trepidation.

He has the kindest, most beautiful brown eyes, he’s looking at me with genuine warmth and hope.

There is nothing aggressive or accusatory in his manner.

He’s just lovely.

‘…..now come up onto all fours, legs hip width apart….’

And then I remember.

Somewhere along the line, I hurt this man.

Is he an ex?

From what I remember, I’ve been the one that has be the hurtee rather than the hurter (actually that’s not altogether true) but it is definitely not the case here.

‘….turn onto your backs….’

That’s it.  I knew him from when I was in New Zealand.

We were friends?  We either worked together or went to the same gym.  I think?

I look at him again, and silently ask ‘You were what age, around 20?’

He beams with agreement.

So he must have been younger than me at the time.

‘….open your arms wide….’

I remember fun times; chat, banter, debates, long walks in the countryside.  A definite meeting of minds.

His smiles widen.

‘….hands to your heart chakra, and breath out….’

Then it comes back to me.

That night in the bar when he grabbed my hand and told me he was in love with me.

And how appalled I was.

He was just a kid; what use was he to me?

Instead of being touched, charmed or flattered, I remember being filled with frustration, exasperation and a dark, cynical amusement as I imagined him taking me home to meet his parents.  How shocked would they be to see, not a sweet, plump, innocent nineteen year old student, but this bleach blonde, highly muscled, feisty amazon rapidly approaching her thirties.

It would be like a little fluffy lamb taking home a big, slavering, leering, hungry wolf.

But out of sheer loneliness I told him I’d try and reciprocate his feelings.

Oh God.

‘….let your shoulders soften and just try to let it go….’

I recall his child like clumsiness, his innocence, his naivety and how much he irritated me.

‘….give into the sensations….’

I remember him proudly booking a restaurant to take me out to dinner and the red rose he left on my place setting.

I remember him ordering champagne.

Trying to feed me some of his dessert.

Most of all, I remember how much I silently mocked him for his ridiculous, cliched efforts when I should have been touched, charmed, encouraging and grateful.

He wasn’t even working full time and it must have cost him a fortune.

The poor guy.

He should have ran for the hills when he met me.

‘….and up into downward dog….’

Then, the worst recollection of all hit home.

‘….down on all fours….’

The two of us in my bedroom kissing passionately for over an hour, my body afire with lust, inwardly wishing, hoping, begging him to man up and fuck me.

But he either had an attack of nerves or, more heartbreakingly, didn’t know what to do next.  Because he hadn’t done it before.

And whilst I don’t think I said anything horrible to him, I’m pretty sure that my exasperation and utter disgust was apparent.

‘….and breathe….’

I dare to look back towards the battered window frame with sorrow and shame.

But he’s gone.

I don’t even remember his name.

I do remember that I broke his heart.

I’m so sorry.

So very, very sorry.

I could have handled it so differently had I been in a good place.

I could have, as I had once done for another, taken his virginity with love and tenderness and left him with a rocking chair memory to die for.

But God I was fucked up.  And so very, very angry and everyone and everything.

Sweetie, whoever you are, know that being with me would have brought you more grief than you can ever imagine and it would have kept on coming, because twenty years on and I’m still trying to sort my shit out.

I bet that by now you are married, with kids, living a happy fulfilling life by the sea with a warm, loving, woman who has loved and will keep on loving you back the way that you deserve.

I’m still single and officially bonkers, so take some comfort from that will you?

‘….now prepare yourself for shavasana….’

As I lie amongst the peaceful, relaxed bodies of my fellow yogis I rack my brains for his name.

Surely the very least I can do is remember his name?

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But all too soon the little cymbals ring, and the class finishes.

As we are all walking out the teacher mentions that she’s having a party for one of her kids this weekend.

I’m barely listening.

‘Which one?’ asks the old dear who has the mat next to mine.

‘Nathan’, she replies.

Nathan!

That’s it.

Nathan.

Nathan, if that’s how my sexuality made me behave, well I’m bloody glad it’s on its way out, and it may be twenty years too late but I at last can appreciate what a compliment it was for you to take an interest in me.

You were sweet, handsome, thoughtful, funny, lovable and brave, but alas all of those amazing traits were wasted on me as at that stage of my life, as I didn’t trust them, didn’t think myself worthy of them, and wouldn’t, and indeed didn’t know what to do with them.

So I rejected you.

For the right reasons, but in the wrong way, something I truly regret now.

I know/hope that no doubt you have forgotten all about me, but hope you are happy, my lambkin and have learned not to offer your throat to the wolf with a red rose when all she can offer you is her hunger.

Big love xx