9 Aug 2013

Confessions: Embrace the Suck

Today I was feeling kind of down because I am not exactly where I want to be in life, I am struggling to be proud of my accomplishment and I am lost in terms of what the next step in my life is. I am simply overwhelmed with all of these thoughts going on inside my head and it has become extremely difficult to stay positive.

I am the type of person who always has a plan, I know where my life is going and I have an idea how I am going to get there. I realize that plans do not always work out and that the path to the destination isn’t always straight, and actually sometimes the journey is more important than the actual destination. But I like to have a plan.

Right now I don’t have a plan. I am finished my Bachelors Degree currently seeking employment in my field with no real idea of what I really want to do with my life. Well.. technically that is a lie, my ultimate dream is to be a writer.

I am fully aware that it is not a logical plan for me to attempt to rely on writing as my career, considering I have bills to pay and such, so I am forced to decide what else might be a good choice for me. My inability to make decisions has made this difficult for me.

Anyways, to make a long story short I was feeling down about all the crap that I feel I have to go through to reach my destination. The friend that I was speaking with simply told me to google embrace the suck and this article came up about Chris McCormack who is a triathlon athlete (http://triathlon.competitor.com/2013/05/training/chris-mccormack-embrace-the-suck_76419)

It is an incredible article about how he managed to embrace the suck at the worst point during the race when all he wanted to do was quit. It was incredibly inspirational and I recommend reading it.

6 Aug 2013

Sixteen Small Steps To Happiness

1. push yourself to get up before the rest of the world - start with 7am, then 6am, then 5:30am. go to the nearest hill with a big coat and a scarf and watch the sun rise.

2. push yourself to fall asleep earlier - start with 11pm, then 10pm, then 9pm. wake up in the morning feeling re-energized and comfortable.

3. erase processed food from your diet. start with no lollies, chips, biscuits, then erase pasta, rice, cereal, then bread. use the rule that if a child couldn’t identify what was in it, you don’t eat it.

4. get into the habit of cooking yourself a beautiful breakfast. fry tomatoes and mushrooms in real butter and garlic, fry an egg, slice up a fresh avocado and squirt way too much lemon on it. sit and eat it and do nothing else.

5. stretch. start by reaching for the sky as hard as you can, then trying to touch your toes. roll your head. stretch your fingers. stretch everything.

6. buy a 1L water bottle. start with pushing yourself to drink the whole thing in a day, then try drinking it twice.

7. buy a beautiful diary and a beautiful black pen. write down everything you do, including dinner dates, appointments, assignments, coffees, what you need to do that day. no detail is too small.

8. strip your bed of your sheets and empty your underwear draw into the washing machine. put a massive scoop of scented fabric softener in there and wash. make your bed in full.

9. organise your room. fold all your clothes (and bag what you don’t want), clean your mirror, your laptop, vacuum the floor. light a beautiful candle.

10. have a luxurious shower with your favourite music playing. wash your hair, scrub your body, brush your teeth. lather your whole body in moisturiser, get familiar with the part between your toes, your inner thighs, the back of your neck.

11. push yourself to go for a walk. take your headphones, go to the beach and walk. smile at strangers walking the other way and be surprised how many smile back. bring your dog and observe the dog’s behaviour. realise you can learn from your dog.

12. message old friends with personal jokes. reminisce. suggest a catch up soon, even if you don’t follow through. push yourself to follow through.

13. Feel gratitude for everything and anything you can. Appreciate the little plants that sprout up in the sidewalk. Appreciate the way all of life is teaming with yet more life and breathing and beaming. By feeling gratitude, you immediately gravitate more beautiful things and experiences to be grateful for. You will find happiness isn’t far away by simply feeling grateful.

14. think long and hard about what interests you. crime? sex? boarding school? long-forgotten romance etiquette? find a book about it and read it. there is a book about literally everything.

15. become the person you would ideally fall in love with. let cars merge into your lane when driving. pay double for parking tickets and leave a second one in the machine. stick your tongue out at babies. compliment people on their cute clothes. challenge yourself to not ridicule anyone for a whole day. then two. then a week. walk with a straight posture. look people in the eye. ask people about their story. talk to acquaintances so they become friends.

16. lie in the sunshine. daydream about the life you would lead if failure wasn’t a thing. open your eyes. take small steps to make it happen for you.
—  Sixteen Small Steps to Happiness (via souultree)

30 Jul 2013

What The Hell

Just glanced up at the calendar above my desk and realized that today is July 30h!!! How has time gone by so quickly?

I swear it was just April and I was finishing final exams.

I don’t understand how days can go by so slowly but weeks and months can fly by. Am I getting old or something? I feel like ‘time flies’ is something that my grandparents always say. But I’m not even 22!!

It is summer, and it feels like I am wasting my life away working everyday in an office with no windows. What the hell. What am I doing with my life? I shouldn’t be spending all of my time working, just attempting to pay the bills.

End of rant. Thank you for listening.

Short Story #9

"How are you doing today?"

Her head was down, hands folded neatly in her lap, and shoulders slumped. She was a tiny girl, at fourteen years old she was barely over 80 pounds, that day she wore dark jeans and sneakers, and her hair hung loose around her shoulders.

Her voice was soft she answered, “I just want to die." Looking up her eyes were hallow and empty, the passion I had once seen in them had completely disappeared.

She came to me when she was only a few days over thirteen. I will never forget how frightened she was the day that we met, I remember it so vividly, she looked abandoned as she told me all she wanted was to make her parents proud.



"I, I, I just wanted to be the perfect daughter I wanted them to be proud of me, I wanted to be the person they wanted me to be."

"It sounds like their view of you was really important."

"Yeah… that’s why I tried to act girly, and hide that part of myself." She sniffled trying to hold back tears, not wanting to cry. Her nose wrinkled slightly as she focused on staying strong and holding back tears.

"Rae-Lynn, can you explain to me what you mean by ‘that part of yourself’?"

Hesitant Rae-Lynn glanced around the room, the soft green walls were lined with book shelves and paintings of various colours. One painting in particular caught her attention, it was of a young girl playing in a sprinkler, she focused on it for a long time before she began to speak.

Re-focusing her attention she stated, “I’m gay." I waited for her to continue, but she didn’t.

"It seems like you feel your parents wouldn’t be supportive if they found out."

"Are you serious? That’s why I am here." Anger started to boil up inside of her, jaw clenched, fists balled in her lap, one foot tapping silently on the carpet.

"Will you tell me what happened?"

"It was my birthday on Sunday and all of my friends were coming over for a bar-be-que. I was really excited since it’s only the second week of August and some of my friends I hadn’t seen all summer." Trailing off slightly I knew that there was something else to say but she was unsure. It must have been really difficult for her to trust me after feeling so abandoned by her father.

Taking a deep breath she continued, “there is this girl, Francesca, she is perfect; long dark hair, olive skin, big brown eyes, absolutely beautiful. The first girl I have ever loved. Francesca agreed to come to my party and I was so nervous.

"Anyways, skipping to the relevant part. Apparently Julia, supposedly my best friend, told Francesca that I am gay. I am so angry with her it’s not even funny.

"But it turns out Francesca likes me, you think that would be a good thing, but NO!" The pace of her voice slowly increased and the volume followed, she spoke so quickly it was as if the words were attempting to escape.

"At some point during the evening, after presents and cake and all that, Francesca and I ended up alone. She leaned in to kiss me, I was so nervous and excited my stomach felt like it was doing somersaults inside of me.

"Right at the moment our lips touched my father walked into the room. He screamed in Francesca’s face and told her to get out of his house. She started to cry, but he didn’t stop, he just screamed louder until she ran out the front door. She didn’t look back.

"The moment the door shut behind her he grabbed me hard by my upper arm and dragged me to my room and shoved me to the floor. He spat his religious views in my face and told me what a terrible person I was and what a disgrace I was to the family.

"He looked me in the eye and told me that I had ten minutes to pack my things and he didn’t want to ever see my face again. I was terrified, attempting to grab my most important belongings through my tears."
Such a young and fragile girl, she looked broken as she spoke, her eyes glossy with tears, her voice unsteady and her hands shaking.

"That night I slept, shivering on a park bench, like ten minutes from my house."

My heart broke, I couldn’t image how scared she was being alone with nothing but a small backpack.

"The next day I was lost, unsure of what to do or where to go. I ended up walking around town trying to figure out how I could change, if there was some way to turn this part of me off, some way to heal me.

"It was around noon when I found this park that I had never been to before. I sat on a bench and spent a few hours watching people. Small children were pushed around in strollers, or pulled in wagons, while others ran and their parents chased them, teenagers passed through laughed and joking as if trying to impress each other. But I couldn’t stop watching this couple that was across the park. The mother was pregnant and it looked as if she was singing to another child who was bouncing in her lap. She bounced the child onto her husband’s tummy and the three of them giggled together. They looked like such a happy family."

She smiled when she spoke of them, that’s when I could see the passion in her eyes, the yearning to gain that experience. I could tell that she wanted that happy family that she never had growing up.

"Later, just as I was about to get up I saw the family starting to pack up their things and I couldn’t help but watch them hoping that they would walk towards me and I could get a closer look. I wanted to know how to get what they had.

"They did. The mother was beautiful, tall with long blonde hair and blue eyes and her daughter a spitting image. But her partner was a girl, shorter with spiky black hair and a stunning smile.

"In that moment I decided that I was never going home and I needed a permanent place to live."

"It sounds like you went through a lot in those twenty four hours, that must have been extremely difficult for you. But it sounds like you are determined to do what you think is best for you and what will make you happy. Did you find a place to live Rae-Lynn?" Such a beautiful young girl I was worried at the thought of her living on the street.

"Yeah I went to my aunt’s house, but the condition of me living with her is that I have to see you."



"I just want to die." Looking up her eyes were hallow and empty, the passion I had once seen in them had completely disappeared.

Over the past year Rae-Lynn had lived in four fosters homes, never staying in one place longer than two months. It was a lot of rejection for a fourteen year old girl to take. Each time she came to me with the news that she was moving homes again it broke my heart. Each time the look in her eyes was unbearably sad.
Always trying to stay strong, she attempted to hold back tears and hide the hurt that she felt. Looking into those light blue eyes I could see that she was broken.

She hit the lowest point approximately six months after her father kicked her out, Rae-Lynn was finally starting to get comfortable living with her aunt. Opening up slightly, adjusting to the new school and starting to make new friends. It seemed as though things were going to come together for her and she was going to get a chance at a normal life. Then one day she came home from school, the locks on the door had been changed and there was a note left on the step for her.

Abandoned again, she felt completely worthless.

She ended up at a local group home with four other children. Being a quiet and reserved girl Rae-Lynn was over shadowed, so completely alone, isolated from her peers, feeling as though she had no place in this world and nothing to live for. That’s when the suicide ideation began.

Today I look into her eyes, and I feel like I have lost her.

"Mrs. Webb told me that she was going to adopt me. I finally thought that I had my chance at a somewhat normal life. Mr. and Mrs. Webb were both so kind to me and I was actually starting to feel at home there.

"Then all of a sudden I’m gone. All my things are packed up and I am back at Baker House. This time I didn’t even get an explanation."

Tears welled up in her eyes, but this time she didn’t hold them back. It was almost as if she had stopped fighting, the light inside her had burnt out.

"I just don’t want to live this way anymore. It hurts too much" she managed to choke out between tears.
"I know you have been hurting for a very long time and you are so exhausted from fighting that it seems like you just don’t want to do it anymore."

"YES," she pronounced as if she felt understood even if only for a moment, “but it’s not just that I don’t want to do it anymore, I can’t do it anymore, I just can’t

"I have been through so many homes, where so many people tell me that they care and that things are going to be different. But they lie! They all lie to me." Clenching her fists tightly at her sides she looks around as if attempting to find something to break, but settles on a pillow and hurtles it across the room.

"It sounds like you are really struggling to trust people right now because you feel like everyone in your life the last year has lied to you."

She nodded.

"If I die no one would miss me. I just wish that I would fall asleep and never wake up."

"It sounds like you feel that you have nothing to live for anymore because all you do is suffer and you want to leave this life painlessly."

She nodded again and responded quietly, barely loud enough for me to hear, “I am scared."

Rae-Lynn stared at her hands that were crossed neatly in her lap, avoiding making eye contact with me. After a year of standing strong,  it must have been difficult for her to admit that she was scared, so I allowed her a few moments to sit in silence.

Eventually she looked up, “I don’t want to live anymore but.."

Again silence.

"It’s okay to be scared." I paused approaching the situation delicately. “You know that you can call me at anytime if you need me right?"

"Yeah," she said hesitantly.

"Are you going to be safe tonight Rae-Lynn?"

She nodded again. The conversation was clearly over and she had retreated back inside of herself.

"Are you going to Baker House tonight?"

"Mhm" she got up to leave without another word.

"Have a good night Rae-Lynn, call me if you need anything."

She opened the door carefully and left without turning around.

I felt some comfort in the fact that she was returning to Baker House because I know they are trained on how to deal with suicide and she would not have access to anything that she would be able to take her life with. But there was still something nagging inside of my gut, I was worried about her.

That day she looked different, something had changed in her and she wasn’t putting up the fight that I was used to seeing from her.

I sat for hours going over every detail of our conversation. All I could think about was how can you make a child believe that the future will get better when there is absolutely no consistency in their life, no one they can depend on and very little support. 

10 Jul 2013

Short Story #8 A

I decided to go through this story and do some edits and re-look at the ending. It would be super awesome if you read the original version first and then gave me some feedback, all constructive criticism or thoughts are welcomed and appreciated. Thanks for taking the time to read my stories <3

"This is stupid," Jessica announced as she slammed the door and sauntered towards the couch.

"Do you know why you are here Jessica?"

"Umm… the lawyer made me come," rolling her eyes towards the ceiling in a typical teenage fashion, and crossing her arms to close herself off.

"Do you know why the lawyer made you come?"

She exhaled heavily, “to make sure that I am fit to stand trial," keeping her arms crossed and refusing to elaborate any further.

Jessica had managed to remove herself emotionally; it was the only way to survive the pain. Forcing herself to be strong and pushing all of the emotions so deep down inside that the only way to tell that she was suffering was to look through her eyes. Even though she had rolled them at the doctor as she spoke the pain inside them was apparent.

"I know this is hard for you Jessica, but I am here to help. I am ready to listen when you feel like you can talk to me."

"Pfft," she spat in his direction, “there isn’t anything to talk about, my dad is an asshole and I am glad that I NEVER have to see him again." Angrily pacing around the room, as the doctor watched her.

Pausing in front of a large book case, and scanning over the titles anxiously, her eyes became fixed on a photograph. It was of the doctor and a young girl, both were smiling. She picked up the photo turned it towards him and asked, “Is this your daughter?"

He could see the hurt in her eyes as she extended the photo towards him. Only able to imagine the thoughts going through her head at that moment he just nodded, furious with himself for not thinking to remove the picture from the shelf.

Turning to place the photo on the shelf her shoulders dropped, you could almost see her guard being lowered slightly. Returning to her seat on the couch, softly she began to cry.

"It started when I was five, I believe," hesitating slightly. Looking up towards the doctor, tears sliding slowly down her cheeks she started her story.

“My father is a drunk. When he arrived home from work he went straight for the fridge. He wouldn’t even look at me until he had finished his first beer, and I was away forced to retrieve the second.”
This was painful.

“I was an artistic child,” she recalled smiling slightly, “and every day I would look out the window waiting for my father’s arrival proud to show him my latest drawings or art project. Not being acknowledged, as a matter of fact being completely ignored as he walked past me to the fridge was hurtful. He would even yell at me to shut up if I was pestering or annoying him. At five years old all I wanted was his approval and I didn’t understand, but I learned to stop caring.

“By dinner time my father had pulled the whiskey from the cabinet. Not long after his speech began to slur, his feet unsteady and his temper raged.

“The first time that he hit me, remains so vivid it my mind it feels like it happened only recently. It was just before midnight when I crawled out of bed, I couldn’t sleep.”

She exhaled heavily, looking back into the past was painful, her eyes revealed a buildup of many years of suffering.

“He was still up, whiskey in his hand as he stared blankly towards the television. The hardwood was cool on my bare feet as I walked down the hallway and across the living room towards him.

“Standing in front of him I saw his eyes were red and hollow. I hoped for comfort but I was unsure of what I should do next, I just stood there staring for a few minutes shivering beneath my nightgown until he noticed me.

“’What do you want?’ he shouted at me with such force, breaking the silence and causing me to step backwards. I was scared.

“I told him that I couldn’t sleep in a scarily low voice and I distinctly recall calling him daddy which was never an appropriate name to call my father.

“’What did you say?’ screaming just as loudly as he did before so I raised my voice slightly in return, repeating that I couldn’t sleep.

“All he could say to his five year old little girl was, “What the hell do you expect me to do about it?" I will never forget the look on his face as he said this, not only was there anger in his eyes, but he looked at me like I was stupid.

“’Can you read me a story?’ I spoke softly, hopeful. Grabbing a magazine from the stack beside him, he threw it at me. I couldn’t help but start to cry, all I wanted was for my dad to love me.”

The doctor’s heart broke as he listened to the story, unable to imagine how hurtful it must have been for Jessica to be completely rejected by her father. Inside of Jessica’s eyes he saw a broken little girl yearning for acceptance.

“Seeing my tears made him furious, he screamed at me again and then grabbed my arm hard pulling me towards him. He slapped me once hard across the face and pushed me to floor.

“For a moment I just lay there sobbing. My cheek stung and my body paralyzed in shock. I was terrified and he felt no remorse, after a few moments passed he pushed me out of the way with his foot and continued to watch the television.

“That night I cried myself to sleep.”

Pausing for a moment to breathe in deeply and collect her thoughts, Jessica looked vulnerable for the first time.

“His drinking got worse. He started to get to the whiskey before dinner and with the whiskey came the drunken slumber and the raging temper. The slaps became more frequent, it seemed as though whenever I attempted to speak to him I angered him, and anger always lead to violence.

“After a while slaps became punches and the violence slowly progressed. It seemed as though he got some sort of sick pleasure out of hurting me.

“My mother didn’t like it but she was helpless within my father’s grasp and she knew that if she attempted to stand up to him he would do the same to her. So, she spent her mornings dressing me to hide the bruises.”

"That sounds like a really difficult situation to be in, wanting nothing more than your father to love you and be there for you but receiving nothing but pain," the doctor spoke quietly.

"Yeah…." She trailed off, looking into the past, her eyes vacant for a moment.

Choking down tears she continued.

“When I was fourteen I got the brilliant idea to stand up to him. When he got home from work that day I didn’t meet him at the door with a cold beer like I was supposed to, so he came looking for me. I was in my bedroom pretending to read and I knew he was coming. My back was turned and I listened, preparing as he approached me.

“Attempting to catch him by surprise I turned quickly and threw a punch.

“Without hesitation he grabbed my hand and pushed my wrist towards my arm until it cracked loudly. The pain was unbearable and I was unable to stop the tears from flooding my eyes.

“With my vision blurred I was defenseless and he took advantage, striking me twice in the face. I’m not sure what happened after that, I think I may have blacked out because of the pain but I know he didn’t stop. I woke up in the hospital the next morning with two black eyes, a swollen lip, fractured wrist and two broken ribs. I was in agony.

“Not long after I woke up a nurse was there to give me a shot of morphine, it dulled the pain but didn’t stop the pounding in my head. All I could think about was what happens next, I knew my mother would have made up some excuse to cover for him and I was terrified to go home.

“To be honest I am still afraid. I no longer live with my father but I still lay awake every night afraid that he will find me and that he will punish me for all that have happened since that day.” Tears welled up in her eyes as she expressed herself.

"You are aware that the people you are living with now are supposed to protect you right?"

"Yes, but it isn’t easy to change, I have been afraid for so long," shifting uncomfortably the doctor felt like she was hiding something, but he didn’t press, they were making progress after three long sessions of getting nowhere.

Jessica sighed loudly, “it was nice to finally get my story out… but I’m leaving now." Grabbing her things quickly she exited the room leaving the doctor alone.

He thought about the session for a long time after Jessica left, hopeful that the progress would continue when he saw her three days from then, eventually falling asleep in his office.

When Jessica left the office she sighed a sigh of relief, finally the last piece of the puzzle was complete. She had told her story.

Almost excited, like a rush of adrenaline had overcome her, she hurried home.

Her plan was calculated and the moment that she walked in the door she began to gather her things.

Jessica was done with hurting, done with being afraid to close her eyes. She was looking for peace.

After two years of moving from family to family hoping to find someone to care, she had given up hope. She felt completely alone, hopeless. In her mind there was no reason to keep living, to keep hurting and to keep running from a reality that she could not escape.

Waking up in the hospital that day changed her life. Closing both her mind and her heart she had tried to escape the pain, leading herself to a life of barely existing, emotionless. Her arms and legs became a visual tally of all the times that she was unbearably alone and needed to feel something.

Inside she was broken.

She grabbed the familiar knife from the kitchen and rushed up the stairs to the bathroom. Lifting the back panel in the drawer she found the bottled she was looking for, GHB. She swallowed hard, no longer thinking, just going through the motions.

Adding another two tally marks to her wrists she winced slightly, familiar with the pain but it was inviting. Quickly abandoning the knife on the counter she allowed herself to bleed and continued with her plan diligently. Only having approximately fifteen minutes before the drugs kicked in and she may not be able to follow through.

Each movement was swift and calculated.

Opening the closet revealed a rope that was already measured and hung. Stepping onto the stool, she was ready.

Taking a deep breath she finally allowed herself to think freely. Thankful to have finally had the chance to tell her story to someone who cared made her feel peaceful, ready to escape a world where all she had done was suffer.

Looping the rope around her neck tightly she was ready to die. Smiling slightly as she kicked the stool from beneath her feet and let go. She was no longer in pain.

The doctor was woken abruptly by the phone at about 6 pm, surprised to receive a phone call so late on a Friday evening. When he picked up the phone the deep solemn voice on the line was alarming.

"I’m afraid I have bad news Dr Matthews," the person on the other end paused, exhaled slowly then continued, “I am sorry to tell you that Jessica Brown took her life this evening." Dr Matthews gasped in shock. “Her foster mother found her hanging in her room when she arrived home from work. Her wrists were slit and there was an empty bottle of pills on the bathroom counter. She was leaving nothing to chance." The call ended shortly after and he sat down in his chair placing his face in his hands. She was gone.

8 Jul 2013

Me, Myself and I


I’m 5’6 barely over 100 pounds, I am right handed but I have two left feet…
I trip and fall on a daily basis,
My feet can’t keep up with my brain, with my hesitation, my contemplation,
I think, and I think, and I think
Until my feet are firmly planted in the ground like a flower that’s unwilling to grow
Because I am afraid of making mistakes,
When I fall I don’t always want to get up, but I do
I am strong
Because life has thrown me down so many times, that I’m battered and bruised, But I know that no matter what life hits me with…
I can handle it
And I will keep smiling
I will smile, no matter how much my heart hurts, no matter how much I want to cry, no matter how broken I feel
Because my mother taught my to be thankful, to use every mistake, every misstep, every heartbreak, every moment as a learning experience
She taught me that if I smile I will be happy.
I am athletic,
I sprint through life, as if it’s a race
I don’t stop to catch my breath or the enjoy the scenery
And I’m so focused on a goal that I’m not even confident I want to achieve
My past is filled with mistakes and missed opportunities
Because I was too afraid to step off the path that I forged
I am naive
My heart is bruised because I wear it on my sleeve
I am quick to lend a hand or an ear or a shoulder
I am trusting and always believe the best of people… even when I shouldn’t
I love to argue,
There is something powerful about the formulation of ideas, persuasion, and  attempting to show someone what the world looks like through my eyes
I am passionate
And I also hate being wrong
I love walks on the beach, I hate wearing pants and I can never resist a piece of cheesecake
My name is Megan
I giggle when I am uncomfortable and I can laugh until I cry
But I don’t cry as often as I need to

— Spoken word by Megan

7 Jul 2013

Story Story #8



"Umm… the lawyer made me come," rolling her eyes towards the ceiling in a typical teenage fashion, and crossing her arm to close herself off.

"Do you know why the lawyer made you come?"

She exhaled heavily, “to make sure that I am fit to stand trial." Keeping her arms crossed and refusing to elaborate any further.

Jessica had managed to remove herself emotionally, it was the only way to survive the pain. Forcing herself to be strong and pushing all of the emotions so deep down inside that the only way to tell that she was suffering was to look through her eyes. Even though she had rolled them at the doctor as she spoke the pain in them was apparent.

"I know this is hard for you Jessica, but I am here to help. I am ready to listen when you feel like you can talk to me."

"Pfft," she spat in his direction, “there isn’t anything to talk about, my dad is an asshole and I am glad that I NEVER have to see him again." Angrily pacing around the room, as the doctor watched her. Pausing in front of a large book case, and scanning over the titles anxiously her eyes became fixed on a photograph. It was of the doctor and a young girl, both were smiling. She picked up the photo turned it towards him and asked, “Is this your daughter?"

He could see the hurt in her eyes as she extended the photo towards him. He could only imagine the thoughts going through her head at that moment. He just nodded, furious with himself for not thinking to remove the picture from the shelf.

Turning to return the photo on the shelf her shoulders dropped, you could almost see her guard being lowered slightly. Returning to her seat on the couch, softly she began to cry.

"It started when I was five, I believe," hesitating slightly. Looking up towards the doctor, tears sliding slowly down her cheeks she started her story.

My father is a drunk. When he arrived home from work he went straight for the fridge. He wouldn’t even look at me until he had finished his first beer, and I was away forced to retrieve the second.

This was painful.

I was an artistic child, and every day I would wait by the window for my fathers arrival proud to show him my latest drawings or art project. Not being acknowledge, as a matter of fact, being completely ignored as he walked past me to the fridge was hurtful. He would even yell at me to shut up if I was pestering or annoying him. At five years old all I wanted was his approval and I didn’t understand, but I learned to stop caring.

By dinner time my father had pulled the whiskey from the cabinet. Not long after his speech began to slur, his feet unsteady and his temper raged.

The first time that he hit me, remains so vivid it my mind it feels like it happened only recently. It was just before midnight when I crawled out of bed, I couldn’t sleep.

She exhaled heavily, looking back into the past was painful, her eyes revealed a build up of many years of suffering.

He was still up, whiskey in his hand as he stared towards the television. The hardwood was cool on my bare feet as I walked down the hallway and across the living room towards him. Standing in front of him I saw his eyes were red and hollow. I hoped for comfort but I was unsure of what I should do next, I just stood there staring for a few minutes shivering beneath my nightgown until he noticed me.

"What do you want?" he shouted at me with such force, breaking the silence and causing me to step backwards. I was scared.

I told him that I couldn’t sleep in a terrified low voice and I distinctly recall calling him daddy which was never an appropriate name to call my father.

"What did you say?" screaming just as loudly as he did before so I raised my voice slightly in return repeating that I could sleep.

All he could say to his five year old little girl was, “What the hell do you expect me to do about it?" I will never forget the look on his face as he said this, not only was there anger in his eyes, but he looked at me like I was stupid.

"Can you read me I story?" I spoke softly. Grabbing a magazine from the stack beside him he threw it at me. I couldn’t help but start to cry, all I wanted was for my dad to love me.

Seeing my tears made him furious, he screamed at me again and then grabbed my arm hard and pulled me towards him. He slapped me once hard across the face and pushed me to floor.

For a moment I just lay there sobbing. My cheek stung and my body was in shock. I was paralyzed in fear and he felt no remorse, after a few moments passed he pushed me out of the way with his foot and continue to watch the television.

That night I cried myself to sleep.

His drinking got worse. He started to get to the whiskey before dinner and with the whiskey came the drunken slumber and the raging temper. The slaps became more frequent, it seemed as though whenever I attempted to speak to him I angered him and anger always lead to violence.

After a while slaps became punches and the violence slowly progressed. It seemed as though he got some sort of sick pleasure out of hurting me.

My mother didn’t like it but she was helpless within my fathers grasp and she knew that if she attempted to stand up to him he would do the same to her. So, she spent her mornings dressing me to hide the bruises.

"That sounds like a really difficult situation to be in, wanting nothing more than your father to love you and be there for you but receiving nothing but pain," the doctor spoke quietly.

"Yeah…." trailing off looking into the past, her eyes vacant. Choking down tears she continued.

When I was fourteen I got the brilliant idea to stand up to him. When he got home from work that day I didn’t meet him at the door with a cold beer like I was supposed to, so he came looking for me. I was in my bedroom pretending to read and I knew he was coming. My back was turned and I listened, preparing as he approached me.

Attempting to catch him by surprise I turned quickly and threw a punch. Without hesitation he grabbed my hand and pushed my wrist towards my arm until it cracked loudly. The pain was unbearable and I was not able to stop the tears from flooding my eyes.

With my vision blurred I was defenseless and he took advantage striking me twice in the face. I’m not sure what happened after that I think I may have blacked out because of the pain but I know he didn’t stop. I woke up in the hospital the next morning with two black eyes, swollen lip, fractured wrist and two broken ribs. I was in agony.

Not long after I woke up a nurse was there to give me a shot of morphine, it dulled the pain but didn’t stop the pounding in my head. All I could think about was what happens next, I knew my mother would have made up some excuse to cover for him and I was terrified to go home.

To be honest I am still afraid. I no longer live with my father but I still lay awake every night afraid that he will find me and that he will punish me for all that has happened since that day.

"You are aware that the people you are living with now are supposed to protect you right?"

"Yes, but it isn’t easy to change, I have been afraid for so long," shifting uncomfortably the doctor felt like she was hiding something, but he didn’t press, they were making progress after three long sessions of getting nowhere.

Jessica sighed loudly, “it was nice to finally get my story out… but I’m leaving now." Grabbing her things quickly she exited the room leaving the doctor alone.

He thought about the session for a long time after Jessica left, hopeful that the progress would continue when he saw her three days from then. Eventually falling asleep in his office.

He was woken abruptly by the phone at about 6pm, surprised to receive a phone call so late on a Friday evening. When he picked up the phone the deep solemn voice on the line was alarming.

"I’m afraid I have bad news Dr Matthews," the person paused, exhaled slowly then continue, “I am sorry to tell you that Jessica Brown took her life this evening." Dr Matthews gasped in shock. “Her foster mother found her hanging in her room when she arrived home from work. Her wrists were slit and there was an empty bottle of pills on the bathroom counter. She was leaving nothing to chance." The call ended shortly after and he sat down in his chair placing his face in his hands. She was gone.

5 Jul 2013

Why I write

When people ask me about myself one of the first things I include in describing myself is my passion for writing because it is such an integral part of who I am. Lately I have noticed that people have been asking why I write. I was actually surprised by my inability to articulate exactly what writing is for me. Now I shall attempt to explain.

I am not always able to express myself vocally but writing allows me to express myself in a way that is meaningful to me as well as permanent. It allows me to capture a moment or a feeling that I have experienced. A lot of the time my spoken word poetry are expressions of who I am, how I feel or what I have been through. And this this can be quite cathartic and therapeutic.

The permanence is important to me because it allows me to look back on moments of weakness and show what I have overcome as well as look back on moments of strength to remind myself that I am able to get there once again.

Writing can also be an important escape for me. When writing fiction having the ability to create and dictate the characters is extremely powerful and allows me to create an entirely different world.
Writing forces me to open both my mind and my heart to new experiences as well as look at the world differently.

I would love to hear from you guys, stop by and say hi or ask me a question

xox Megan