Do Something Wonderful Today


2 Nov 5

Those of you who visit my blogs regularly, will know I haven’t posted anything in a while. That’s because I have been trying to catch up with my backlog of reviews but also because I now have other things on my mind.

I am proud to announce that on 1st November my eldest son Robert and his amazing wife Alison gave me a priceless gift. A  Grandson whom they named Alexander. He is our little miracle, as three years ago his brave mum underwent a double transplant Pancreas & Kidney.

5 Nov 10                                                                            The proud Parents

Alison was diagnosed with Diabetes’s at 18 months old and has been through much more than a lot of people could bear. Despite this, she maintains a positive attitude and works tirelessly to raise awareness around transplant issues. Her gift of life was given to her by the parents of a young ten year old boy who had been in a road traffic accident. At that time, she was dangerously ill and in renal failure and we were afraid we would lose her. This little boy’s family put their own grief aside with their tremendous sacrifice to give life to another. Now we have all been given another gift of life, with the birth of our precious boy Alex.

We all pray for miracles when times are tough but they are all around us, every day, if we have the eyes to see them. Life itself is one of the greatest miracles. Robbie and Alison journey so far, has been a true love story of dedication and unending love for each other. The day they married was a proud day for us all and now they embark on the greatest journey of all as their love has been completed with our darling Alex. They are now beginning their own family.

10 Nov 29                                                                            Cosy in Nana Jones’s Arms

Some people say we are born into the family that will make us grow the most spiritually. A family that will provide us with the tools we need to fulfil our life purpose. Sometimes, unfortunately it is a family that toughens us up or gives us more pain than we can bear. At other times, it is a family so filled with love that it crosses over to everything it touches and transforms it with its own amazing love. I see this in action every time I have contact with Alison’s family. They are loving and supportive of each other, compassionate, patient with a faith that can move mountains and has. What more could a Mother want for her children, to be surrounded by such love and faith.

So our little Alex is here, he arrived a little early at six months old, three months premature. Weighing in at four pounds and half an ounce. He gave us all quite a scare but now has mstolen all our hearts. He has his mother’s fighting spirit and his father’s big feet. We are not quite sure if the nose belongs to his Dad or his Grandad, he has his Nana Jones’s serenity and maybe, just maybe he could be a chip off the old block of his Grandma. Why? well you are never going to believe this but he is blogging already.

He is in the special care unit, getting stronger every day and has his own online baby dairy, how cool is that. Yesterday he got a cuddle from his Nana Jones and he loved it. Unfortunately, I had to come home after starting with a heavy cold virus type infection. So at the moment that blog is my precious contact with my little sweetheart. Hopefully, with the help of some antibiotic’s and steroids I will see him soon.

We have wrapped him up in a blanket of love, I talk and stroke his little pictures every day. I tell him I love him and how precious he is to all of us. Our dream has come true this year and life is good. If you are not already on the organ transplant list please join and help us creates miracles like this every day.

5 Nov 9                                  A Precious Cuddle from Mummy makes Everything Alright

 

If you are not already on the Organ Donation Register please take five short minutes to sign up today.

 

https://www.organdonation.nhs.uk/how_to_become_a_donor/registration/consent.asp

 

Whats life all about?


225250_184813394900729_4985803_n

Over the last few days I found myself struggling with this age-old question. The impact of the new moon was cruel and unrelenting and refused to loosen its grip on me. Dragging me unwillingly, to places I did not want to go, into a place we all try to avoid. The darkness that resides inside our own soul, something inside me told me that I had to hang on, that these periods are transient and like most things in life will pass.

I possess highly attuned skills in human psychology, human grief and depression but am also smart enough to know; that when you are there alone and struggling none of these will help. In fact, like a lot of people say a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.

I found it practically impossible to look at all the good in my life. Instead I was almost hypnotically drawn to the negative, the dark and the unexplainable. We are all our own worst critics not matter what face (Maybe masque is a better word) that we show to the world.

I slept a lot, I hardly ate and my only communication (real communication) was with my friend in America. We can talk about anything and I think the distance helps. Then we are able to carry on the charade to the outside world that everything is ok.

I have been to this place periodically, throughout my life. I call them “Dark Nights of the Soul” and remember others who have walked the same path and achieved great things. Such as Sir Winston Churchill who tagged them as “Bad Dog Days”

So maybe I am not such a failure after all, I know as I come out and back to real life that I am not. However, when I am there, it is a vastly different story as I go over all my past mistakes, telling myself I am useless and much worse. I think how the world would be a much better place if I were not in it. I beg the universe, God anyone for a positive sign and wait. Slowly, the fog lifts and the world becomes visible again. I laugh at something ridiculous, silly and it is just the medicine I need.

Hope returns and I dance with it joyfully holding it tight, firmly, afraid I may lose it. I realise the gift behind these “Dark Nights of the Soul” have a gift as we leave them. It comes gently, almost a whisper but we are quiet now, ready to listen, willing to learn. It is almost worth the pain, the gift, the insight, we could have gained no other way.

I realise that I was experiencing what I am, what I have become, the part of me that slipped away bit by bit, become lost, until it screamed that it wanted to go home because that was now the only way I would hear it. To the gentle peace of knowing, of simply being and doing.

Sometimes when we love we give away too much. The object of our love becomes everything to us and we see ourselves through the veil of that relationship. We forget who we are, we think we are the way that person relates to us, hurts us. The world around us becomes masked by a great fog that we are unable to see through.

If we are lucky, yes I did say lucky, we experience those “Dark Nights of the Soul” we gain access to our heart and who we are at a soul level. Who we would be but for a life interrupted, a wrong fork in the road that leads us slightly off course. To the place where we give too much to another, forget our dreams, hopes, what makes us who we are.

We lose our identity, to fit in, to make it work and it is like we are tearing out a piece of our own hearts. Life is over far too soon and most of us will spend a long time in old age, when the time to do these things have long passed us by, regretting those things we didn’t do. Remembering, how we sold ourselves cheaply, betrayed our soul and the very essence of who we are.

If there is something you want to do, take a step towards it today, no matter how small. Take your flashlight of hope and shine it through the fog and reconnect with who you are or who you can become. Be the light in your own lives, so others can watch you and find their own light.

Broken, Chapter Four


Hello everyone, today is the last free chapter for Broken, Chapter Four, for those of you who have had a taster and want to know more. I hope you will buy a copy of the book, a percentage of the money from the book will be going to a well-deserved charity. Seren, is an organisation that counsels people who have experienced child abuse, they are vastly underfunded and their waiting lists are long. Anyone here who has been through this will tell you, that the effects are far reaching. If just one person is helped by reading this book then my journey in writing it will have been worth it. Broken is due to be released soon on Amazon, please keep tuned to the blog for the exact date. So without further ado, here is Broken Chapter Four.

"Broken" by Athena Brady

Susan’s mother, Mary was sitting at her dressing table getting ready for work. She had to be there for eight thirty but she had been held up by Wally her husband, ranting and raving as he often did. Wally was insanely jealous of anyone and everyone. They had been watching the TV when Roy Orbison came on and he had thought she was paying too much attention to him so he had got in front of the telly to block her view. God he was like a 5 year old sometimes, why had she ever married him? She had sent the children to bed early again, she knew when he was starting and didn’t want them to hear the vile names he called her. His temper had gotten the better of him as usual and he began his onslaught

“Who is it tonight then Mary, Brian I suppose? You better hope that his wife doesn’t find out”

Don’t be silly Wally, I married you didn’t I?”

“Because I was the only one that would you have a slut like you”

“We both know that isn’t true, why are you so horrible?”

Wally thought about it carefully, if he pushed things too far she wouldn’t go to work tonight and he didn’t want that. No, he had his own secrets and if the little slut thought she could get one over on him she had another thing coming. He was sick of her and the men who drooled over her; he would teach her not to mess him around anymore. Consciously and manipulatively adjusting his tone of voice he said,

“No you’re right love, take no notice of me, it’s just because I love you so much, that’s all”

“Well we’ll say no more about it then Wally and I’ll go and get ready for work then”

Mary walked into their bedroom with a heavy heart, how had she ever got herself into this mess in the first place? He had seemed so nice at first and she thought their struggles would be behind them when she married him. All she wanted was a good life for herself and her children but almost as soon as the ring was on her finger he had changed, into a jealous possessive monster. If she left him he would make her life a misery, he knew too much about her past and he would use this information to destroy her; No she had to keep him sweet until she could find another solution.

Mary’s thoughts began to wander. At least he was a good father to the children that was something at least. He was always buying Susan little presents, Kevin seemed ok in fact, he had seemed to have grown up overnight; Maybe it was having a man around the place that had such a good effect on him. Tonight she had to try hard to stifle a laugh as Kevin had said

“Mum you don’t have to go into work tonight; I earned your wages for you” as he presented her with a pocketful of coins.

“Thanks Kevin I really appreciate it but if I don’t go to work tonight, I will lose my job; you spend that money on yourself and our Susan luv”

The look on his little face of disappointment was heart breaking; but those few coppers wouldn’t have made any impact at all on the bills that had to be paid; but she was very touched by his thoughtfulness none the less.  She put on her Carmen rollers on to heat up and as she brushed her long auburn hair until it shined, she thought about times past.

When she had been with the man she loved, in fact the only man she had ever loved. How had her life turned into this pitiful existence? That’s so selfish she thought to herself, as long as the children were happy then she would cope. Brushing away the tears, she applied her makeup skilfully and then began to select her outfit for the evening. She choose a black and white striped pencil dress that hugged all the right places and remembered a time long ago; when the man she loved had given it to her, as a present.

Broken Chapter Three


Hi everyone thanks for tuning in for chapter three of “Broken”. I have decided that I will publish one more chapter next week so that will be four in all. If you are visiting in for the first time you can the link for find chapter one below.  http://wp.me/p2zG6L-eA

and chapter two underneath here.

http://wp.me/p2zG6L-eG

Please take the time to leave me a comment good or bad as I really value your input. A proportion of the sales of this book will be donated to Seren a child abuse counselling service.

"Broken" by Athena Brady

 

                                                                                          Chapter 3

Liverpool September 1963

Kevin was outside with his friend Steve, they were 10 years old and they already felt, they were grown up. They were street kids Kevin and Steven and they were used to amusing themselves. Quite often, they got into mischief but it was normally because they were bored rather than being outright naughty. They had enjoyed many a good chase after playing knock and run, but they weren’t daft enough to do it in their own street; as they didn’t want to risk the wrath of their fathers.

They were loyal to each other and were best friends in fact, in their eyes they were blood brothers. Last summer they had cut themselves and put their thumbs together so their blood would mix, so it was official, in their eyes. Kevin and Steve were like chalk and cheese to look at, Kevin being blonde with blue eyes, tall and skinny; whilst Steve, had black curly hair with green eyes, and a short, plump stature; although, both boys possessed an impish sense of fun, wide grins and a twinkle in their eyes. Their mothers used to say to them, that the twinkle came from the Irish in them.

They had become firm friends through their mothers, who worked together and they had a lots in common; the major thing being, they both had fathers they did not like. Kevin had confided in Steve about the beatings he often received from his father and the night time visits to Susan, his sister. Likewise, Steve had told Kevin how his father beat both him and his mother whenever the fancy took him, usually, when he couldn’t get money for the pub. They had both been called the man of the house by their mothers before their fathers returned from sea; so they felt it was their responsibility to look after the family.

“Kevin I swear I nearly stabbed him last night, he battered me mum and she’s black and blue today”

“I know how you feel Steve, I don’t know what my dad does to our Susan but I know it’s not right, I hear her crying after he’s left. I want to tell me mam but I don’t know what to say, you know, how to put it like” our Susan has changed since he came, she is all jumpy and nervous and I don’t know what to do to make things better for her”

“Maybe if we could make some money and give it to our mums they wouldn’t have to go out to work every night. My dad would go the pub and we would have peace and your dad wouldn’t go into Susan’s room cos your mam would be home””

“How are we gonna make some money then Kev”

The two boys then talked about various money making schemes before deciding they would wash cars.

“Yeah that’s a brill idea come on then kidda, let’s do it”

They set planning what they would need and Kevin snuck into the flat, took a plastic bucket and some washing up liquid, from under the sink when his father wasn’t looking. Steve’s house was empty so he took 4 cloths, 2 for washing and 2 for polishing; that way they could do a car each and make more money.

.

So the two friends set about their mission full of optimism and motivation and they worked hard all day washing and polishing and earned what was a small fortune to two 10 year old boys. They did such a good job that they earned tips on top, for all their hard work. When it started to get dark they packed up their stuff and ran home excitedly with their earnings.

 

Kevin ran up the stairs three at a time he was so excited until, he heard the shouting as he reached the second landing. Instinctively, he froze as he listened to the shouting voice, he knew so well.

“You little slut, how many times do I have to tell you go the toilet”

He knew his mum wasn’t in because his father never spoke to Susan like that when she was around. As he entered the flat he saw Susan cowering in the corner in a pool of her own urine.

“Sorry daddy sorry” she stammered, protecting her face with her hands.

Kevin felt the anger rise in him as he ran towards his father and launched himself at his legs, punching him with as much might as he could, he spat,

“Leave her alone you bastard”

As the words left his mouth in a blind fury, he knew he would pay dearly for them. He was scared now but he didn’t show it, he wouldn’t give him the satisfaction. Kevin felt the searing pain as he was lifted in the air by his hair and the choking effects of his father’s hand around his throat as he was losing consciousness. As the dizziness took effect, the front door opened and he was dropped quickly to the floor with a thud. Their father hurried towards the door to the hallway, shutting the lounge door behind him to prevent their mother from seeing in.

Hi Mary, you’re early give us a kiss then”
“You’re in a good mood”

“All the better for seeing my beautiful wife”

Kevin heard his father talking to her and knew he was trying to delay her entry into the lounge. When Mary their mother had finished talking to their dad Wally in the hall and finally entered the lounge; Kevin had wiped up the urine and put clean knickers on Susan and was watching the TV like nothing had happened. At the tender age of 10 years Kevin was protecting his sister and hiding the horrors of his and Susan’s life from their mother.

Broken Chapter Two


Hello and welcome, last week I revealed “Broken” the first chapter, today, is chapter two. Please take the time, to leave me a comment. I value your opinions good or bad. As writers we put our heart and souls into our writing, in an attempt to get our message across. Although this book is a harrowing subject, that is both graphic and very sad in places. It is predominantly, a book about healing and hope that reaches out to those people who have suffered as Susan does in the book. It is a book I hope will raise awareness of this issue to others and if I am lucky will raise vital funds for Seren, a charity that deals with the aftermath by counselling survivors. As a proportion of book sales will be directed to this worthy cause.

Child abuse affects people in different ways, no two stories will be the same. Some will be worse than others but without doubt it has a far reaching effects on survivors. Some make it through that journey and sadly some do not. Child abuse is the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about; but discuss we must, if we want to make a difference and protect our children. For those of you who did not catch Chapter One you can read it here  http://wp.me/p2zG6L-eA

"Broken" by Athena Brady

Wales October 25th 2007 pm evening

For as long as she could remember, Susan had stood on the edge of things. She realised now at the age of forty eight years, she had been observing from a distance, a safe distance. Always watching and observing, being part of the group yet apart from it, on the side-lines. The events of the past few hours had taken there toil on her psyche, dragging up memories best forgotten from the dark part of her soul were she had kept them hidden for so many years. Scars that still burnt into the very core of her being, their power over her, as relentless as the day they were born. Reducing Susan, in the confines of her own home, in the place she felt safest of all, to a quivering wreck.

She could make no sense of what was happening to her. The phone rang it was Kevin her brother.

“Hi Susan, how are you”

“Not to good actually”

She began to tell him what had been happening to her.

“I think it’s all connected to Wally myself”

“Why?”

“Why the things he put you through when you were a kid and when we were in care”

“Care we were never in care Kevin?”

“Oh yes we were, when you and I were spilt up”

“I remember vaguely staying with friends of mum’s in Kirby but that wasn’t care”

“Yes it was”

“Susan, have you ever asked yourself the question, were was your mother then?”

“My mother, she was yours as well”

“But … she was far from perfect and she didn’t get rid of Wally did she?”

“I always thought once she knew she would kick him out, why didn’t she?”

“Kevin, I can’t deal with this now I will ring you tomorrow”

Susan flew into the bathroom and was violently sick. After cleaning herself up she went into the lounge and sat down. She had dealt with the Wally things years ago, hadn’t she?

She reached for the cigarette packet on the table and pulled one out and lit it. Dragging the nauseous essence of the nicotine, deep into her lungs. As she coughed she thought, these things will kill me. Susan made a mental note to self to cut down, but not today, I need these today. Something had transported her to a place she did not want to go. A long forgotten place, she had left many years ago; and a place she thought, she would never return to.

Thoughts raced around her mind like a tornado, one mingling with another as it set off yet another chain of thoughts. Igniting old feelings of worthlessness and depression, her head began to spin and small beads of sweat trickled down her forehead. Susan started to feel light-headed and held onto the chair in front of her to steady herself; she sat down just as the vivid images began to flood through her mind sending her senses into overdrive.

Liverpool 1963

No! No! I’m not going back there she cried out as her mind betrayed her. As she struggled to form a tangible thought she felt a familiar touch on her shoulder. A touch she knew was not real as she was alone in her flat; and it transported her back forty five years to when she was 3 yr. old child helpless in a world of adults. Susan was in the room now, THAT ROOM waiting in dread for him to come into her bedroom.

She looked around the room with the eyes of the child she once was, drinking in the environment as though the mere act of concentration would delay the outcome she knew so well. The large room was separated into two by a hardboard wall. On the left side slept Kevin her older brother with Susan on the right. Susan was 3 years old and Kevin was 10 years. The room was sparsely furnished but clean and tidy with essential items only. Blue patterned linoleum covered the floor with a similar colour, blue curtains on the windows. There were 2 beds, 2 bedside cabinets and 2 chests of drawers. In the corner of her room stood a portable 2 bar electric heater which kept the winter chill off the room.

Susan could hear her mother saying goodbye to her father, as she left for her night job. She began to cry silently into her pillow as she realised her torture would soon begin. Very soon her father would appear in her room with that glazed look in his eyes, as he did every night her mother worked. Her father had just appeared 6 months earlier out of nowhere. Before he arrived there was just Susan, Kevin her brother who was 7 years her senior and their mother.  Her mother had told them that their father had been working away but Susan remembered thinking why didn’t she remember her talking about him before?

Susan’s thoughts wandered and flowed towards her mother, who she adored. Mum is so beautiful she thought, she could see her in her mind’s eye, her flowing red hair with the curls that framed her face and her big green eyes like pools you could sink into. Her heart shaped face and pale pink lips enhanced her beauty even more. Although they had little money now it had not always been the case.

Her mother’s expensive clothes from all over the world completed her perfectly manicured look. She was a woman who, when she entered a room demanded its attention silently, without uttering a single word. All eyes were upon her and her mother loved it! Susan’s heart melted with pride when people said she had inherited her mother’s looks, but deep down she didn’t believe them and thought they were only saying it to impress her mother.

Susan knew she was ugly she had always felt like this for as long as she could remember. Wally had told her she was an ugly, stupid little bitch and she knew he was right. When she grew up no one would want her, not like they wanted her mother. Susan’s world always stood still when her mother talked about her travels around the world, her clear blue eyes were mesmerised, drinking in everything her mother said. She savoured every word and drank in every experience as though it were her own, imaging the scene her mother painted as though she had been there. She especially loved it, as all children do, when her mother talked about the day she was born. The first time she had done was just before her father had returned home. A time when she felt safe, when there was just Susan, her brother and their mother.

“Your father” she said, eyes beaming with pride was over the moon when you were born. He sent me 3 orchids with a little note attached which read, “One for the day I missed and one each for my beautiful wife and darling daughter”.

“Your daddy was travelling with his job when you were born and didn’t get home until the day after you were born; but oh Susan, she said excitedly, you should have seen the presents he bought back for you”. He brought beautiful little dresses, hats, shawls, in fact everything a new baby could ever need. Her mother shifted in her chair to get closer to Susan and whispered in her ear, “There was no prouder father in all of England” she cooed.  Susan never tired of hearing this story it and could recall it word for word. Her little mind worked overtime as she puzzled to herself

“What made daddy change then? It must be because I’m so naughty? Daddy says I am, so it must be true cos grownups don’t lie do they?

Susan was back in the room now with her tiny frame huddled under the blanket. Tears cascaded down her face relentlessly and she wiped them away, it would be worse if her father caught her crying. Kevin heard her and said,

“Are you crying again kidda?

“No I am not! Susan replied indignantly I’m a big girl now”

Susan was trying to sound as brave as she could whilst stifling back the tears which were now stuck in her throat. The tears rolled down her face silently and she wiped them away defiantly with the corner of the blanket.

Kevin’s voice softened now,

“Ok sis, you go to sleep now and I’ll look after you and keep watch for Dad and Jimmy Green teeth of course” he added laughingly.

Jimmy Green teeth, was a fictional character that Kevin had made up to frighten Susan into going to sleep when she was playing up at night. In the happier days before their father had arrived on the scene and it always did the trick! Susan was soon asleep dreaming her favourite dream of walking through the Tripoli Gardens in Italy, which her mother had told her about and they were looking at all the beautiful flowers.

As she wandered happily around the gardens with her mother, she thought it’s even more beautiful than mum told me. Her mother motioned her forward with a gentle touch on her back. Susan could just about make out the frame of a man by the bushes as her mother said, “Go on then, run to your daddy”! She ran excitedly as fast as her little legs could carry her, giggling to herself and stopped momentarily as she wondered to herself, why am I not frightened of him? As she reached him and looked up Susan was shocked to see he had no face!

Startled, she jumped back and the fright woke her from her dream as it had so many times before.  As she slowly came back to reality she realised she was on the floor. She had fallen out the bed and bumped her eye on the bedside cabinet and a red angry welt was forming. Dazed, Susan picked herself up and rubbed her eye, wincing with the pain she hauled her body back into what seemed to a slight three year old, an enormous bed. Susan could hear Kevin’s gentle snores which frightened her even more, knowing he was asleep and unable to help her. Somehow just knowing he was in the other room and awake comforted her. Normally after her father had left, Kevin would ask her if she was ok and rock her back to sleep as she cried her distress out.

Susan pulled the Covers up to her chin and surveyed the room, it was dark and Susan was afraid of the dark that was when HE came.  Her mind raced frantically back to the dream. Why didn’t my nice daddy have a face, she thought intently, with as much concentration that a three year old could muster? Her mind was searching anxiously for the answer as the door slowly creaked open.

Small specks of light from the lounge, streaked into the room as the dark figure entered. It hovered over Kevin’s side of the room checking he was asleep, before approaching her bed. Susan could hear Kevin’s deep breathing and knew he would be unable to save her from her plight. OnceIT the dark figure, was satisfied Kevin was asleep it approached her bed. It lent over her and pulled back the covers, in one swift well-practised, movement. Susan was trembling uncontrollably and had broken out in a cold sweat. She opened her mouth to scream but no sound came out. She could hear and feel her heart beat pounding in her chest and she desperately tried to move but was unable to, as she was paralysed with sheer terror.

Susan could hear HIS laboured breath and smelt it was heavy with the scent of whisky; he looked to her a slight 3 year old, like a gaint.  Suddenly his voice broke into the darkness

“How’s my sexy little girl then? IT asked as the dark figure approached her and fumbled underneath Susan’s pink flowered nightgown.

“Daddy’s come to see if you’re alright” he croaked, his breathing heavier now. The voice sounded kind but Susan knew it was not kind, this was her nasty daddy, and her nice dream daddy had gone away.

Today, I Reveal “Broken” the first chapter


This book has been a long time coming, it has taken me quite a few years to write. It has been picked up and put down, more times than I can remember. It is about a subject close to my heart, child abuse and it is told from a very different angle, than most books in this genre. It is gritty, raw and hard-hitting and there is some swearing with in the book, where the narrative calls for it. Here, is a brief synopsis of the book.

"Broken" by Athena Brady

This is Susan’s true story told anonymously, of her journey from despair to healing. Susan begins to experience a feeling that leads to childhood memories of sexual abuse in middle age. Memories she has no recollection of, that begin to haunt her in the present. She embarks on a journey of discovery, which challenges everything she thought about her life previously. There are times she thinks her dark night of the soul will destroy her and all her closest relationships. Once she has opened Pandora’s Box, it cannot be closed until she has come full circle. This book is a gripping, tense and sad narrative that you will not be able to put down, until you have finished it. A must read for those who dare to explore the grey and darker areas of life.

I wrote this book to highlight child abuse and the effects upon the people who endure it. A proportion of the royalties of the book will be going to “Seren” a child abuse charity that is vastly underfunded and provides much-needed counselling to survivors. Please take the time let me know your thoughts, good or bad by leaving a comment.

                                                                                     Chapter One

Wales October 15th 2007

It was a cold October morning, one of those days when people don’t feel like getting up. Susan’s bed was warm, comfy but she had to go to work.  Reluctantly, she climbed out of bed, went into the bathroom and put on the shower. She dressed, ate breakfast and went out to defrost her car.

She felt frail, shaky, vulnerable, and fragile, like she was at the start of a virus or cold. Normally she enjoyed her drive to work and it reminded her how lucky she was, to live in the countryside.

She lived in a very beautiful and picturesque part of Wales, near Aberaeron with its sweeping landscape, that leads majestically to the sea. She particularly loved the view just at the top of the hill, as she was coming out of the small village of Llanon. On a clear day she could see for miles and Susan often took her packed lunch to this spot, to relax and drink in the scenery. Today however, she was unable to appreciate its beauty. As a heavy sense of foreboding was hanging over her, like clouds, on a once perfect horizon. She felt vulnerable and she had no idea why and it scared her. Susan arrived at work twenty minutes later, got out of the car and approached the entrance.

Struggling to remember the code to gain admission, her colleague arrived behind her and punched the number in. Susan’s hands were shaking and she felt trembling inside, which caused her to drop the things she was carrying. She made a joke with her colleague.

The fifteenth of October two thousand and seven was a day that Susan would never forget; it would be etched in her mind forever. As it was the day, the feeling came. It arrived out of nowhere, without any rhyme reason or warning. Suddenly, making Susan feel self-conscious, not good enough, inferior,  thinking all eyes were upon her; watching her, waiting for her to fail, but fail at what? None of it made the slightest bit of sense but that was how she felt.

Suddenly, Susan looked round the familiar office she had worked in for the past three years and saw it through different eyes. She saw contempt in the eyes of her colleagues and wondered why, suddenly, no one liked her. She knew her thoughts were bizarre, to say the least; every look, every sentence only went to confirm these thoughts in her mind.

Susan’s day dragged relentlessly on, as Susan frantically watched the clock willing it to be five pm. To Susan, that this one work day had felt like two.  She was finding it harder and harder to hold back the tears, threatening to fall. Trembling and she feeling she couldn’t hold on much longer, before the floodgates of her emotions consumed her.

Often when we desperately want to go somewhere, everything seems to conspire against us? The phone rings, or someone asks you a question on your way out; and the short walk to the door a few yards away, can seem like a mile.

Sometimes a feeling or event that comes out of nowhere, can be the trigger to a catalyst of events that become life changing. This was how it was with Susan, who woke on this day a much different person, than the one she has gone to sleep as yesterday. It felt she was coming down with a virus or a cold. Normally, when we feel like, there is a significant event like a sore throat or a fever but Susan it was simply, a feeling.

Similar to, the beginnings of a depression, Susan lost her usual confidence and happy go lucky nature. Yet, no significant event had taken place that had upset her. The feeling just came and it stayed there. As though it was waiting silently, for her to acknowledge its presence. When she did, it escalated intensely until she had no sense of self-worth left at all. Just an overwhelming all-consuming, sense of deep sadness within, that refused to leave her.

Imagine if you can, if you felt you had no one in the world that cared about you. No one you could take into your confidence, how alone, would you feel? How hopeless, how lost? If you were unable share your distress with anyone, because, you did not trust the people around you, who you had trusted the day before.

Susan had no clue, why suddenly she didn’t trust anyone, or even her own instincts and her world, suddenly, became a very scary place.  Shewas beginning to experience the terror within herself. Where did it come from? And how could she make it go away? Thoughts unexpressed, or not rationalised with others, become more powerful and can quickly grow out of all proportion; but sometimes they are necessary evil in the journey to self-awareness and recovery.

The length of our journey through life depends upon our own commitment, to its completion. We either walk into the darkness and terror willingly, with bravery, hope and as much faith as we can muster; or can be  dragged into it with no control. Susan was being taken somewhere, against her will, by something inside of herself.

Present Day

Years later, Susan realised it was the hidden part of her, that guided her through the terror and darkness within her. That her higher-self had kicked in, because of her extreme distress. Not unlike, when a distraught mother lifts the car from her trapped child without even thinking about it. As it’s a reflex reaction to save her child. She just reaches within herself and finds the strength. Looking back years after the day that everything changed, Susan knew without doubt, that there are parts of ourselves we have little knowledge of unless we have urgent need of them; and that they hide even from us, until we have no other choice but to call upon them. Susan followed the feeling she experienced that day and it led her, to the events connected to it.

She supposed now, as she looked back years after the event of that day; that this was how the soul and brain worked together collectively. To store our memories, until we are ready to look at them in the light of reality and see them through the eyes of truth. She was more aware after her journey, of the fragile tapestry of fantasy that we all weave. To protect ourselves from the things that may destroy us, if we dare to acknowledge them.

She sifted through the evidence, taking nothing for granted, assessing all the key characters in the play that was, her life. She looked at the facts with fresh eyes; untainted by what she previously thought, or was told, had happened; and when this examination was spent, she realised that most of her life had been a carefully constructed story that had no resemblance, to what she had, believed it to be.

The experts will tell us, that a breakdown is when everything we believe in is challenged.  Which then leads onto us struggling to know who we are anymore? This was how Susan felt when the feeling appeared out of the blue and she decided then, that she had two choices.  Either to fall aimlessly into an abyss of depression and mourning for the person she felt she thought she was before the feeling arrived; or reinvent herself; as she would like to be and step into her future with fresh eyes and a bold spirit.

Susan’s journey, took her deep inside the darkest parts of her mind, where many people never travel to. There were times, she felt that she would never recover from the horrors she discovered there. Susan’s dark night of the soul nearly destroyed her. As Susan made the connection that the feeling, she first experienced, was the first clue, she began to move forward. That clue led her to another clue and another, until eventually she completed the jigsaw and at last, the process of healing could finally begin. What follows is Susan’s story, of despair, loneliness and depression, which led her towards acceptance and a place where finally, the healing could begin.

Well that is it for this week, over the next couple of weeks I will be posting chapters two and three. Please take the time to leave a comment good or bad as without readers, a writer is nothing.

Bloggers for Peace Challenge July 2013


This month’s challenge for Bloggers for Peace 2013 is to write a letter of peace and send it out to the universe. I am a little late posting but here goes.

forpeace6

Dear Universe,

Thank you for bringing so many wonderful friends my way. Thank for guiding and nudging me in directions I sometimes didn’t want to go. I look at the violence all around us and it makes me want to weep and sometimes I do. I look at children being abused and people treating each other like dirt. Sometimes I think the bullies are winning and I feel defeated, like nothing I do will make a difference.

Then you send me something wonderful and inspiring like our Bloggers for Peace community and I know we will win if we don’t give up. Help me to fight and conquer my fears every day and teach others how to do it.

Help me to inspire and uplift those people who are downtrodden and despairing. Let us take each other’s hands and lead one another out of the desert. Let us recognise that we are all connected no matter what religion, gender, etc we are. Let us be mindful of what we say and do and fight like peaceful warriors. Unveil the hidden so the light may expose it and release people from the prisons of their minds and actions. So we may start again and make a new world where everyone is equal and our only life purpose is to love and be loved.

Home is where the heart is


20130730-020615.jpg

Hello everyone, I have not posted anything for a while now and for that I apologise. Unfortunately I have been unwell but I am feeling better now. Although I still have up and down days. It takes a lot to keep me way from my passion writing. The good weather has been a godsend and had me out on the deck of our log cabin. I have been growing strawberries and tomatoes and am starting my own herb garden. I find it amazing that nature has the power to heal us where conventional medicine fails. It is surely one of the wonders of the universe.

My husband extended the deck this year and attached a bird table for me on one of the rails. I have a special area for my mum who died in 1991 of cancer. I have ornamental angels and other decorative things in this area. Recently I have had a family of squirrels come to visit me, they are so cute. There are three of them a large one which I think is the dad and a middle sized one. Which I have presumed is the mother and a baby one.

I wake up every morning to the birds singing, we live in the countryside. so many birds come to visit Larks, Swallows, Woodpeckers, Mr & Mrs Woodpecker as I call them and their baby. They are the first thing I see of a morning as my window looks out on the side deck.Every morning I take my coffee on the deck and they appear or are already there waiting. Sometimes it really is like a Disney movie with all the birds moving too and fro. I am so blessed to live here and be able to follow my dream and write my books.

I was surprised to see 100 followers on this site, especially as I had not written anything for a while. Thank you so much for your continued loyalty it means so much. I am catching up on my book reviews and hope to start up again with my “Giving Something Back Posts” this Saturday. For any new readers, this is where I give a shout out for all those great bloggers out there. I share links to their blogs and tell people a little about them.

Some of you may be aware that I have my own website now at http://athenabrady.co.uk I am
trying to get my followers to go over to this site. I only have 50 followers there so could do with some more. So if you can go there rather than here, I would be really grateful. However for people who still come here, I will continue to post. Thank you so much for reading my blog and taking time out of your busy schedule to visit/comment. How do you de stress, what are you grateful for in your life ?

Giving Something Back 17


556173_357662764298464_1036408878_n

I have some great blogs for you all this week. First we take a journey to a farm. Then we visit a blog about young women and how they view themselves. Our third blog takes us to a lovely island were innocence and pure hearts still reside. Finally, we finish off with a hunt for a ghost, have fun.

http://bit.ly/YPsa0Y

Visit the farmlet  and read about a typical day you will be glad you visited this amazing blog.

http://bit.ly/112yBu2

Ever wondered what young women think of themselves today? This is a jaw dropper

http://bit.ly/13umDeq

Fancy a view of Island life? This blog will enchant you with its simpleness.

http://bit.ly/10Xg1t8

Have you ever fancied going on a ghost hunt? This is the blog for you then.

Now we come to our regular shout out for Bloggers for Peace 2013. This week I would like to share with you this interesting post.

http://bit.ly/16F0h0p

 

Related Articles

·      http://bit.ly/VoDzmP

        http://bit.ly/11Lm0TG

        http://bit.ly/10Xj8RT

 

That concludes Giving Something Back 17. I hope you have enjoyed your journey this week, please come back and tell me what you liked. Until next week, take care.

 

                                   Athena

Giving Something Back 16


556173_357662764298464_1036408878_n

Wow do I have a treat for you this week. I went to visit a writer friend of mine and I found a real pearl on her blog. A doctor who wanted to experience childbirth to put an end to the question “could man experience the pain of childbirth?” The resulting video is a must see.

Read more … http://wp.me/p2zG6L-d0

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 117 other followers