Feb, 2006. For the past five months I have been living in a car at the edge of woods — jobless and homeless and totally unable to find a way out. I can't sing, I can't dance, I can't scream loudly enough, but I can read and write. So here I am laying down tracks...hopefully the start of an online paper trail out of here. (Update: Miracles happen....if you are reading my story I am part of your proof.)

Monday, December 31, 2007

Happy New Year!

The tree lights are on behind me, the decorations still up, and I'm sitting here, cracking nuts and eating the last of the Christmas chocolates from the tin, trying to work out what my New Year's resolutions should be this year. I intended posting them here so I'd have a constant reminder. But I've just remembered that my main resolution last year was not to do any 'shoulds' at all from now on. So, hopefully, at the stroke of midnight tonight, I'll be resolving just to keep positive and to keep going forward — which is what I want most from myself next year. I've got what feels like the start of flu, so if I can keep awake for it, I'll be seeing the New Year in tonight with a pint of Lemsip and some soluble Aspirin to bring my temperature down — but there's not a hint of complaint in that, because I was part of a new friend's great, family Christmas this year and I know the coming year will be a good one.
I hope it is for us all....
Happy New Year

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas Everybody...

Merry Christmas to all! Thankyou for reading the blog and the book and for all your kind words.... Very best wishes for 2008

Saturday, December 22, 2007


I could come some time over Christmas? Or maybe we could meet part way? Sorry I didn't tell you about my book when I was there last time. I was going to...when we were out on the moors with that horse that was dying, and then at the pub when you were telling me about your spiritual experience with your dad while he was dying. It seemed wrong to tell you my story after that, it felt too important to you. Anyway you know now.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Footsteps in the frost — 0r — giving myself permission to have a nice Christmas

I woke up this morning with the cold howling around inside my bones. But looking out of the window everything was white and beautiful and brilliant, the sun like pearl behind white sky and everything glittered with frost. It looked magical. I love mornings like this. I went to a pantomine the night before last, and the fairy godmother in it was fantastic, really throwing herself into the part, tip-toeing around the cast waving her wand and whispering good into everyones ears. That's what it felt like this morning, waking up to all this whiteness, as if someone had tiptoed through the night - over rooftops and hills, through the trees, up and down streets and alleyways and parks, waving a magic wand, turning the land this clean, silvery-white. I felt happy just laying there thinking it. I turned up the music on the CD alarm — tugged the duvet around me and lay there, staring out at the bare trees on the horizon behind all those misty layers of white half dreaming. One part of my mind though wanted to yank me back to thoughts of Christmas — Christmas that will always and ever be family, no matter how long you've been estranged. It's always hard not seeing Mummy, but there's an added ache through Christmas, and the wondering if I should try to build bridges, at least with her — pick up the phone just to make contact, to see how she is and just hear her voice. But my uncle is still there, and most of my cousins have now married - so there are new husbands and wives and friends in the family who know nothing about me or the past. As a family they have moved on, and after such a struggle in childhood they are now all doing well, in reasonably good jobs and enjoying their lives. They want to make sure it stays that way, and I am a skeleton in the cupboard they dont want out. So even if I could visit it could never be anything more than a charade anyway, and me never anything but a victim of that. I can't be that anymore. But maybe this might be the year to change things.

This year, now that my book is out, it feels even more difficult. Every part of me dreads finding out  if Mummy, or any of the others, have come across the book, dreads knowing any upset I've caused by bringing it all out into the open.... I changed all their names and wrote it under a pseudonymn but she knows it all happened, she was there at the police station that Saturday all those years ago.... But the mind has to do funny things to survive and maybe she managed to somehow wipe out the details? Maybe she had to to have him back in her life, to carry on for the sake of the other children, his children. Also, she knows nothing about my living in the car, about my breakdown and all those months out there, none of that. If they do know by now, my getting in touch would just make it worse - I think everday that one of them might find out — every time the phone rings my heart stops.

But what if they haven't read it...maybe I could just say hello to her, meet her on her own somewhere without my uncle or anyone else knowing? But I couldn't answer even the most basic questions now without lying. I'd have to say I've been getting on with life all this time, just doing the ordinary things...I couldn't mention anything about the book or how I ended up in the car, or any of this... And what if I did that and she found out about the book sometime later? Surely that deception would feel as bad or worse? I've fallen asleep thinking about it all for weeks now in the run up to Christmas — almost tormenting myself — should I, shouldn't I? At least send her flowers. Could I, couldn't I ?...Family never go away, never — especially at this time of year, no matter how long you've been apart, or how distant they are. But this morning I managed to pull my mind back to the frost, the glittering, hard frost covering everything, and that fairy godmother in the pantomine the other night in her pink, satin high-heel shoes tip-toeing through the night spreading magic, until all I sensed were her whispered, positive words, and all I could see were footsteps in the frost going forward.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Breaking the back of my inbox

Time seems so speeded up — another Christmas already! Sometimes I can't believe how quick things are going. Don't feel I've done enough these past twelve months to mark off another year just yet. I'm here though, hopefully putting the peices of my life back together again. What I'm not doing so well with at the moment, is with emails — in replying to them.

I thought I was more or less ontop of things, but last week I found a folder I had moved lots of emails into. Lovely emails in response to the book. I separated them out, intending to reply to them later that week, only I somehow forgot all about it. So I am now playing catch-up with myself — trying to reply to all those that were in that folder, as well as the ones that have come in since. That might take a while... so for now I just wanted to say thank you so much for reading the book and for taking the time to get in touch. I really have appreciated all the kind thoughts and the sharing parts of your own stories, about you or others close to you — some of who never made it.
I'll never forget that this time the year before last, I was almost one of them...
For that I feel so very grateful.
...Thank you.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Rain stops play

My plan for today was to go for a long walk somewhere. Preferably through woods, kicking up piles of dry leaves as I went. But I woke up today to rain — heavy, noisy rain gunning down for most of the morning. So instead I stayed inside reading The Fly Truffler, a beautiful, unusual love story that I'll be a long time getting out of my head. I'm typing here to delay reading the last pages.