Wednesday, 30 September 2015

I'm Eleven Years Old Again.

I'm eleven years old again, the door to the science room is opening, fluorescent lights are bouncing off the clinical grey stools and hexagon tables. My palms are sweating and no matter how many times I wring the edges of my blazer they wont dry, they just wont dry! A warm flush is drowning my skin, reddening my face and I pull my hair in front of my cheeks covering as much as possible as I press my shoulder into the wall wishing to be invisible. Unfortunately, there's nowhere to hide in a classroom, and suddenly there they are, the three of them with matching blonde highlights and sneering expressions; leering at me as I approach my seat. A seating plan has become my jailor, this room my prison and my tormentors await, a whole fifty minutes is going to play out before I can breathe properly again. It starts with a sly kick of my seat as I try to sit down, stealing my notebook so I'm behind everyone else with the work task, refusal to share the exercise book so I can't see the pages and struggle with the questions, jokes at my expense, then the jabs in the ribs, flicking my hair..."You're a dog. You look like a dog. Do you have a boyfriend?...I'm really not surprised, who would want to go out with you. Do you even bother wearing a bra? there's no point. Do you have any scissors? Trim the dogs hair"...pinch, prod, comment. Laugh, sneer, threaten. Over and Over.
I never said a single word. Not to anybody.

I look at my nieces, two of them are that age now, and I see how they look at me, the woman I've become and the ideal they know...they have no idea. They don't realise there was ever a time Sian felt like a tiny pathetic bug, or how much effort it took for me to force myself to even pull myself out of crippling shyness and just talk to people. I see their confident stances and bright beautiful faces and I teach them, as an Aunty should, to never ever put up with other peoples crap. To always stand up for themselves and their beliefs. I tell them to never forget their own worth, or let others stamp down on their confidence.
I'm such a hypocrite.

At this moment in time I feel about as big and useful as a blunt nail. Pushed against a hard wall with thud, thud, thud as the hammer comes down and going nowhere. In my entire adult life I haven't felt like this, I actually thought this feeling was something one simply grew out of, but it turns out bullies down grow out of it, and so here I am...Eleven years old again, wishing I didn't have to go out of my front door in the morning because I know what's coming and it's breaking me down, shard by shard chipped away like ice from a car windscreen.

I wanted to be here so badly, I was desperate for any position, so when the only opportunity became available I took it gratefully. Seems I walked right into a version of hell. I had no idea so far along I would be so trodden on and bashed around like this.

Crying alone is one thing, but breaking down in front of the one person you can't stand to show weakness to is quite a different matter. I just couldn't hold it in anymore, and it seems since that day the dam has broken down and the waterworks wont turn off. The thing is I don't want to just walk away, despite how awful it is, this situation is getting worse every week, but I wanted the independence so much! I enjoy the freedom of money. I love having food in the fridge and lots of it too! But feeling eleven again. God I promised myself I would never let myself sink to that level again. I built up my confidence over years, I thought I'd turned into a different person but it turns out I just hid the frightened little bug I was into a dark corner, hidden behind red dyed hair and late developed breasts! The other person is still there, and my make-believe shell is cracking and I wonder how many people are going to see how weak I actually am. I look at some of my photos and think that's not me, because right now that character feels like a lie, a work of fiction. Because the red hair, the makeup, the bubbly personality-it's all a costume, a farce, to make people believe I am a confident, strong person when really I just feel like a bug again. And I don't know how to deal with this. I just don't know.

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