I felt sad today, and it came on me very suddenly and caught me off guard.
I feel it relevant to the Hethen Project as it happened in a place where my writing and arts as a therapy began almost 20 years ago, so let me give you some background.
In 1995 following a very difficult pregnancy with eleven weeks confined to the maternity ward & the birth of my youngest son I suffered from post natal depression, I was put on anti depressants but they really were not helping me at all, if anything I felt worse. My health visitor a wonder lady and beautiful soul, Elizabeth Forbs, recommended I find something for me, some June time she called it , away from family , home and responsibilities, my hobbies, she asked what my interest were and when I told her she recommended I contact the Harbour Arts Center in Irvine and join some groups, so I did.
I joined the writers group and the drama group and I know now, much better than I realized at the time, just how much that put me on the road to recovery, and finding a little of the me I hadn’t realized I’d lost, at that time.
When my problems relating to the issues I had in 2007-20011-12 which are reflected in the Justice uk style section of the Hethen Project which relates to things I was posting about on various social media websites, blog spot entries and facebook pages which i got locked out of accused of apparently being a fake me account!!!,…
Anyway, justice uk style was the seed of the Hethen Project, an I guess when it all hit the preverbial at that time my subconcious memory of how writing and art had got me thru that post natal depression and other problems I was having at a previous time became the link to mesh or bandaid that held me together, where the link conects in my mind between the Harbour Arts center and art as a therapy for me.
I have written my thots and dreams and all sorts of things down since I was a child, perhaps as an only child it becomes your invisible friend, your unseen sister or brother just a connection of communication with for the secret things you can’t talk about to your parents, everyone has these sort of generation issues.
The shoulder to cry on becomes your diary page , cos growing up as in adulthood best friends are not or cannot always be there, so for me I wrote things down, it was my support my therapy that lightened the load, from there a pattern develops I think and when i couldn’t talk about things I wrote them down, or drew pictures about them, child psychologist do it with children, as play therapy exercise, of course it works with adults too, i learned to do it myself as an only child, so I have a record of who i’v been.
Writing poetry kept me sane, writing Hethen the story, was a way of writing my truth, as I was experiencing it in the only way I knew how to write, I don’t know how to write academically,and frankly, academic papers don’t raise awareness with the general public where the awareness is needed, because frankly, their fucking boring and difficult to read for the average working class person trying to hold down a job and raise their wanes to be good people, anyway I diversify sorry,how I write, well its just not how its done apparently, but it kept me alive, and it kept me fighting , It stopped me feeling stupid and like I might be losing my mind, cos I knew I wasn’t.
I was totally aware of what was happening to me, but could not understand why it was., all the time becoming more stressed, anxious and yes paranoid, I had cause to be, and to this day have evidence to prove that, which of course in its self raises the question of its only paranoia if its not really happening , which it was , and thus for me it was a were a major factor .
So where am I going with this,
Since I started the Hethen project, I’v been fairly reclusive, paranoia does that to humans, so does fear and bullying, and of course that to makes you the victim, you distance yourself from people, and to be honest, in my case, when I was going through the issues from 2008 to 2011 most of the friends I had dropped away or disappeared, even my closest friends couldn’t handle how I was behaving, but they weren’t wearing my moccasins.
I left Telford and came back to Scotland, not just because I wanted to be near my family, but because between the Telford & Wrekin Housing Trust, Telford & Wrekin council, The DHSS & West Mercia Police I was made to feel dehumanized, and the fact is, whither that sounds like i’m being over dramatic or not, that is what happens when your human rights are abused. To this day I have the legal documentation that proves my human rights were abused and I was the victim of a crime of violence at the hands of police officers, in my own home, who were there on a concern for welfare incident ,that was not a legal matter or issue, I was denied my right to a fair trial and justice for the crimes against me none of which were a result of my errors but by errors by these same named government departments with a legal obligation to my welfare & civil rights, who were frankly bullying and intimidating me, to the point where I feared from my life, genuinely, and when I let it was because I didn’t think I would make it through another winter if I stayed.
For the three years since, I’v continued to try to find my feet, and it hasn’t been easy, my kids and I avoid talking about that period of my , of our lifes , and by and large I don’t go out much, and dont socialize, but i’m not living , I feel like a large part of me has merely existed.,although, I feel there is a reason I continue to exsist and part of that, and what keeps me going again is writing, my art and the Hethen Project which is incomplete and on going.
In the past 12 months I have tried to push myself to move on to the next phase of the Hethen Project and to do that I know I need to find that lost part of me again, my confidence, my ability to be around others without being paranoid or afraid of being me, and so, I went back a few weeks ago to the Harbour arts center, and why I was there today and found myself caught of my guard and feeling sad.
There are two members of the group still there who were original members when I was there twenty years since, one of them now leads the group, a dear friend, who back during that period of my life came to be like a brother who supported me through the break up of my marriage, the death of my mother and visited me on the psychiatric ward with books and a shoulder to cry on when my life went arse for elbow first time around.
The other a lovely lady and former teacher who used to type up and help me edit “A Girl From Glasgow” in its 1st draft., which was no easy task given some of it was written long hand and she transferred it to floppy and printed it out for me and my spelling well, there’s no doubt it must have been a nightmare for a teacher!! but she was always kind, patient and helpful with little constructive critiques, suggestions guidance and encouragement.
Today was the first time I had noticed this lovely lady on her feet and walking and thus I was caught unawares and felt sad, helpless in fact as a rush of mixed memories washed over me in an instant, nothing to do with writing, or art more to do with old friends, the passing of time and how things link us to our past and I guess on to the future…
My dear friend is crippled with arthritis and as I saw her walk out at the end of group I saw reflections of that same determined but painful walk of the those inflicted with arthritis, my own mother had , she had rheumatoid, and indeed one of my last conversations with Moira before I travelled south was s, when we were sat during the break in group at the bar drinking tea and she held my hand and comforted me regarding my mums passing,