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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YOUNG BPD WOMAN (Inspired by Maya Angelou)

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Pretty young women think they know my shit

I’m not cute, an old boot, gone down hill quite a bit

But the truth is much more,

Than I’d care to admit

I say

It’s in the storm in my heart,

The voice in my head,

That tells me I’m worthless,

And wish I were dead.

BPD woman

Unfortunately.

Old BDP woman,

That’s me.

I’d walk into a room

Just as cool as you please,

And to men I would seem

Just a cold hearted tease

But some would still come,

The hunter, the sleaze

I say,

‘Twas the ice in my eyes,

And the curl of my lip,

The putdown, the shutdown,

The jut of my hip

The terror I hid ‘neath the sarcastic quip

I was woman

Cynically.

Cynical woman,

That was me.

Those men themselves wondered

What they saw in me.

They tried so much

But did not touch

My cold dark mystery.

I tried not to show them,

I’d not have them see

I’d say,

‘It was mark of my father,   

The scorn of his son

The fearing, the jeering

At school, from that scum

You think you can touch me?

Well think again, chum’

I’m a woman

Impenetrably.

Impenetrable woman,

That’s me.

Now you understand

Why I live alone

No family to love me

No real sense of home

BDP girls when you read this

Please learn from my poem

I’m BPD woman

So solitary

Solitary woman

That’s no way to be

Girl, your enemy is not without, It’s within

Don’t make others suffer

It wasn’t their sin

Try not to reject love

Before it begin

I say…..

Raise your chin, flash a grin

Bathe the world with your smile

For the love of another

Can make life worthwhile

Swing those hips

Shake those tits

For all you are worth

And try to find joy

On this place we call earth

And when demons rise up

All howling en masse

Take shelter and know

That this too shall soon pass

And accept some support

From your woman or man

For to struggle alone

Was not part of God’s plan

I say…

It’s the light in your eyes

The strength in your heart

Your youth and your beauty

That’s only the start

Of all that you are and are willing to be

BDP woman

Phenomenally.

Phenomenal BDP woman,

That is thee.

Namaste little sistas xxxx

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25 DAYS OF SONGS CHALLENGE: DAY 18 – A SONG THAT I LOVE BUT RARELY LISTEN TO

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I love this song. I really, really do. Especially this version.

And JC OWNS it.

He’s not just singing a cover to pad out an album or something. It’s the story of his life. His swan song, his epitaph. He sings of regrets, as he sits amongst his dusty photographs, sun bleached trophies and the rotting remains of a banquet, and of how, despite his successes, riches and luxurious lifestyle, he wished he’d done things differently, as he wife looks on, close to tears.

Within a year both of them were gone.

I can’t watch this video only once, as I am in equal parts, fascinated, moved and terrified by it.

I’m scared because it touches something dark, angry and despairing inside me, and the fear that when I’m his age, I’ll feel exactly the same way about my life.

Without all the success.

Because it feels too late to start again.

Then again, it always did, for as long as I remember.

I’ll watch it once again because it’s so beautiful, but then I’ll try and forget about it until the next time I happen upon it, when once again I’ll touch base with my darkness.

My sweetest friend.


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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


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LIFE, THE FACEBOOK-IVERSE, AND EVERYTHING

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I’m guessing that all of you who have a Facebook account have created your 60 second commemorative movie and uploaded it to your page for all to admire?

I did mine today; and it was everything I expected to see.

And less.

I’ve been off line for the last few days as some dick from the water board chopped through our telephone cable, and it’s taken this for me to realise how much I rely on broadband access for…, well pretty much everything really.  Interaction, education, information, conversation, shopping, food – shit, the shock of having to go out to shop for milk was practically overwhelming!  

To be honest, I realised that I access the great outdoors about as much as someone doing time in prison, and whilst my quarters may be a tad more comfortable than the average Holloway cell, I realise that this is no way to live a life.

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That said, just as I was getting geared up to getting out there and making my presence known, that little blue kiss curl on my modem, suddenly flickered, winked then glowed, and I was back on line, and like the addict that I am, I jumped on that lifeline like Lee Ryan onto, well, anyone with a pulse.

Then, today, I dared to look at my Facebook movie.  And I am not exaggerating in the slightest when I tell you that it is so pathetic, I would rather stick my tits in a mangle than upload it online.

Of course I’ve looked at everyone else’s, and have born witness to their gradual but steadily upward evolution over the last decade.  The achievements, the joys, the kids, the houses, some challenges I guess, but for the most part everyone, from what I can tell, has lived an active, successful, happy ten years overall.

Mine?  Mine is testament to a life lived small and scared, and features the things I used to do, the friends I have driven away, the people who have probably forgotten that I exist, and a montage of witty but cynical comments, and the multitude of photographs of cakes in lieu of snaps of holidays, gatherings with family/friends, and career triumphs.  And the minor triumphs I have achieved?  I didn’t share them because I was too shy/afraid to blow my own trumpet plus, I’m paranoid about people knowing my business.

And reading about the loss of Philip Seymour Hoffman and seeing all of his famous friends, it made me wonder how many of them were actually in his life.  I have more ‘friends’ than I actually want on paper, but only see a fraction of them face to face. Was it the same for him?  I know how depression and illness separates the wheat from the chaff as far as real friendship is concern, and also accept that pushing people away sometimes means they stay away, so I expect that, like me he was very, very lonely.  But hell, if I top myself, there’ll be plenty of popular, happy folk with stonking Facebook movies showing up to put me in the ground, no doubt!

Thanks guys, you rock!  NOT.

Then, on seeing Sheldon Cooper snogging the face of Amy Farrah Fowler for the very first time, and I was torn between finding it touching, amusing and downright depressing. I haven’t been kissed for about FOUR YEARS, and I have to ask, why is some (fictional) weedy, emotionally autistic, scifi geek and his long suffering, frumpy bird getting more action than me?!

The final straw was when I saw this clip of John Berlin begging the gods of Facebook for his dead son’s movie, which filled me with all kinds of emotion.

http://edition.cnn.com/2014/02/06/tech/social-media/facebook-dad-video-appeal/

And I asked myself; if I croak tomorrow, would I want MY family to see this pathetic, 60 second ‘tribute’ to the last 10 years of my life, or am I going to make the next 10 year worth the oxygen that I take from this planet?

So I’m going to go and try and make it the latter happen.

I want there to be a point to my existence.  I want to be of use.  I want to find my clan.  I want my cottage by the sea.  I want to love and be loved in return.  

And yes, I want to be kissed with tenderness and passion.  Preferably by another human being.  Male, please, ideally.

Quite how I’m going to turn things around to such an extent I’m not sure, but I’m coming off Facebook for Lent, limiting my time on the internet and have just volunteered to do some work for a charity.

And whilst I still don’t know the answer to Life, the Universe and Everything (unless it really is 42), I do know I won’t find it sat on my arse, terrified in a South London flat, waiting until God deems that it’s OK for me to die.

Onwards and upwards.

Namaste x


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TOFFEE APPLE KISSES (Inspired by “Philomena”)

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I saw you on the waltzers

To me you looked so cool

They way you leapt from car to car

And played for me, the fool

Your tight Levi’s, your muscled thighs

Oh they were just the start

But your toffee apple kisses, they went straight to my heart

 

I cursed my stupid uniform

My English Language folder

You didn’t mind though, you were kind

You said that I looked older

You bought for me a toffee apple

All crisp and sweet and tart

And then with a flick, of your tongue tip

You eased my lips apart

 

I’ve never had a boyfriend

I’d never had a kiss

I never thought, that what you taught

Could make me feel like this

The kiss did not stay on my mouth

It went core deep and low

And grazed me there, in that place where

Our priest said none should go

 

We held hands on the the boulevard

Strolled to the ‘Hog & Shed’

The lager top and fag ash clouds

Fair went straight to my head

You asked had I a boyfriend

And when I told you ‘No’

Your ‘special place’ we went

Behind the ‘Punch and Judy’ show

 

You said I shouldn’t be afraid

It wouldn’t hurt at all

You said it didn’t count

If we kept up against the wall

You asked why God would punish me

When we were going to do

The very thing that He made

Our bodies urge us do

 

And then you were inside me

And everything went white

The pain, the shame, the pleasure train

Shot out into the night

My first new bra was twisted

My kickers on the ground

And when you stopped, my toffee apple

Nowhere to be found

 

A year has passed since we last met

And much has come to pass

I’ve been disowned, thrown out of home

Was branded ‘tart’ and ‘brass’

The nuns they took my baby

The workhouse I did go

‘Repent thee Eve’ the sisters chide

‘You reap just what you sow’

 

You know it wasn’t OK

You knew it was a risk

You knew you took my maidenhood

The price – a candy kiss

I’d never have let you touch me

Had I known what comes to pass

From letting your goo inside my foo

As the cold brick scraped my ass

 

And now you’re nowhere to be seen

Or that’s what your friends say

You’re working down in Blackpool now

Or, some said, Whitley Bay

But one day this will catch you up

My tattoed gypsy beau

And then you’ll know, you seed did grow

And ‘You’ll reap just what you sowed’

 

I saw you on the waltzers

To me you looked so cool

They way you leapt from car to car

And played me for a fool

Your tight Levi’s, your pack of lies

They tore my life apart

But your toffee apple kisses, they went straight to my heart

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IT’S MY NATURE

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I kind of let myself down yesterday; I lost my temper with someone I care about 😦

I was warned by my counsellor that my changing would probably have some kind of effect on my friends and family, the extent however, was not something that I had anticipated.

Nothing and no one seems safe or stable.  I have lost one long standing friend, another went and came back and a friend that I never thought I’d never lose seems to have officially axed me from her life just to make a point that to her mind, I need her more than she needs me and that I should feel lucky to get any of her time.

And just when I thought I had one friend who would stay strong and consistent, she lashed out at me over dinner yesterday, shocking me somewhat and ruining both the meal and the evening.

It’s probably safe to say that I have had a reputation of being a pretty formidable woman, and it kind of seems that on seeing me soften, some of my loved ones think it will be a good opportunity to push the boundaries, or ‘test’ me, so to speak, which immediately makes me rear back, think DANGER and revert to ‘fight or flight’.

Usually fight 😦

What happened in this instance was that I defended myself as quietly, coldly and efficiently as I could, seeing as we were in a crowded restaurant, but when she didn’t let it go when we were heading to the local pub, I struck back viciously, and told her exactly what I thought of her, the issues in question and what she had done to the evening and our friendship, shocking her into silence and nearly to tears.

Was I sorry or regretful?

‘Fraid not.

When I blow, it’s somewhat volcanic inasmuch as it takes quite some time for me to simmer down.  If I am merely annoyed, I have my say, make my point and then let it go, but if I lose my rag to this extent, it’s a completely different ballpark.

My ex fiancé used to follow me from room to room trying to engage with me after one of our epically inflammatory exchanges, no matter how much I pleaded with me to leave me be for a couple of hours, which resulted in my lashing out and saying things to him that one can never take back, hence we’re no longer together.

I didn’t want that to happen to me and G, but the simmering aftershocks of rage and the self destructive desire to punish joined forces and swept me away, and it took all of my control not to slap her down when she kept trying to clumsily make amends.

She wouldn’t quit though.  She kept on and on, breaching where most fear to tread, asking me why I wouldn’t stop ‘sulking’ and get over it, getting more and more frustrated with me, to the point of resorting to insults, and I could feel those things that can never be retracted filled my mouth, howling to be let free.

But somehow I pulled it back.

I very quietly and carefully told her that not everyone was like her, that some people took time to calm down and that if she could be quiet and let it DROP, just for a little while, I might be able to recover and not be angry anymore.  Not that I actually believed what I was saying at the time; I just wanted to avoid mortally wounding the silly cow.

‘But that’s stupid!’, she cried, ‘why’d you wanna be like that? It’s childish!  Why can’t we just put it behind us and end the night on a good note?’

Ah, my friend G.

All the emotional intelligence of a bog brush.

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Suddenly I saw sanctuary in the form of a little art gallery, grabbed her arm, and steered her swiftly in it’s general direction.

‘Because,’ I hissed, ‘it’s my nature. I didn’t choose it, I don’t want it, but there you go, it is what it is.  Why don’t we go in here, look at the lovely pictures and maybe just maybe we can go for a nice drink afterwards.  If you can manage to shut the fuck up for 20 minutes that is?’

And we did it.

Not without a residual bit of muttering and moaning from G, but she finally realised that I was trying, and entered into the spirit of aiming to achieve a comfortable silence instead of filling it with irritating babble.

And after 15-20 minutes, I managed to make myself make polite innocuous conversation with her, which eventually relaxed into amiable banter after a couple of G&Ts in the pub.

A first.

G will never know how hard that was for me, and she is the one friend who has the capacity to drive me crazy, but she has a big heart, and I’m grateful that I didn’t kick her into touch with cruel words and chilling silence.

And this morning, when I was at last capable of doing so, I gave her a call and apologised for my part in the disagreement.

She, bless her heart, said she’d forgotten it already, then rather ungallantly started banging on about why did reacted how she did, and what I’d done wrong, but for once, instead of losing patience, and defending myself yet again, I did a curious thing.

I swallowed it.

I listened.

And I kept listening for a good 20 minutes until she was done.

OK, I was getting prickly and was half watching/listening to some tripe on TV, but I let her have her say.

Uninterrupted.

Unjudged.

It wasn’t easy.  But I did it.

Jesus, am I going to have to do this with all my friends?!

Is this how normal people behave?

One day at a time Sista, remember, one day at a time…

Namaste x