I’m writing this as a reminder to myself. To never be that woman I let myself become. That deflated mumsy lady, wandering around in a permanent uniform of the messy bun, shapeless mum jeans and a fleece top. A lot of us do that after we’ve had kids. Lose our way a little bit, trying to navigate the maze of our new lives with offspring. Some of us want to look like we know what we’re doing, like we’ve accepted the day to day head banging repetition of home duties.
And then I went insane. Or more exactly, had a breakdown. I mean, I was technically already insane, but for a while, it became totally unmanageable. So years after the birth of my children, when other women find themselves navigating the winding road back into the workforce, I was lying sedated, staring at the four bare walls of my room in a mental clinic, wondering what the fuck just happened.
How was I? I was dazed and confused and overwhelmingly fucking bored!
Bored with me, with my tired, sluggish brain, bored with my life, my aimlessness. Just so god damned bored!
So I spent my time in there wisely. I got a friend who had outside privileges to smuggle me in some bright pink hair dye, and changed that bland mess on my head to mermaid fabulousness. I cut half of it off and left the rest to curl itself into a bouncy, ringleted halo. I started reading about other mum’s who suffered from depression. And the one’s who were fighting back, getting to know themselves as feisty, fun and fucked up mumma’s. Hey, we can’t all be perfect right? So we might as well embrace it, in all it’s awkward, precious, bare-faced glory.
Basically, it felt like I had been blown apart, and was now painstakingly putting myself back together again. I spent the time in the clinic making friends, being an annoyance to the staff and I turned the brightest spotlight I had, on myself.
When I got home, I booked in with my lovely friend to get some long wanted tattoos. I went back to my old piercing shop and had them put back in all my old favourite piercings and a few new ones. I went through my closet and threw out every single stitch of denim (damn that shit is uncomfortable). I draped myself in rainbows and tie dye. I kept on reading women like Constance Hall and Tova and Jenny Lawson. I found my tribe and I embraced them in all their quirky, introverted, fucked up, left-brained weirdness. And in doing so, I also embraced all those things in myself.
When I closed my eyes, I no longer saw an ocean of beige stretching around me as far as I could see. I saw myself as I once was. A bright-eyed anarchist, dancing in the rain and screaming at the sky. That girl who loved rainbows and butterflies. Who believed in Unicorns, Mermaids and Monsters. Who could wake the dead with her wild laughter. I found my inner Queen and I brought her forth with vigour. Since then, I have made a promise to myself to never let her fade into the background again.
I am what I am and I’ve decided that that is fucking glorious. I woke up, saw the light, found my way… whatever the hell you want to call it. This is me coming to you live and happy. It took me ages to get us here. Don’t you ever forget it.
**Actual footage of me spending my time wisely in crazy jail.**