Saturday, 23 January 2010

A wicked spell has been broken after 40 years!


I was a happy little girl. I lived in my imagination and in books. I was always having adventures in my head and would build dens to have these in. The Bedouin tent in my bedroom, the sea going vessel under the table, the little house under the stairs. Sometimes my sister would play too, but it didn't matter I was okay playing on my own.

Between the ages of 10 and 13 I had a very rough time. One which I have talked about before, but suffice to say I was moved to this snotty all girls school and for the duration of my time there I was bullied and had no friends. And would wander round at break time pretending it didn't matter.

My parents finally realised when I was 13 how terribly unhappy I was and moved me to another school. This time co-ed, which coincided with my hormones starting to take hold of me.

I discovered that through flirting I could get attention. And I started on a path that for many years was very self destructive.

One of the things that used to happen to me was events would happen, and I would be part of them however unpleasant or difficult, as if I had no power to remove myself from them.

One of these happened when I was fourteen. I'd gone for a sleepover, with this girl in the year above me. Her parents took us to the cinema and left us there, they wanted to go for a drink. They would pick us up later to go for a meal.

So we are watching the movie and there are two lads sitting in front of us, I can't remember how they got to be sitting either side of us, but they did. And then they were kissing us. Again it's so long ago and such a vile memory that a lot of it is blanked out. But I came out of the cinema with a massive hickey on my neck. I'd never had one before, so I hadn't known what the affect of the lad sucking my neck was going to have.

Lots of trouble ensued as a result, particularly the next day on my return home and my mother seeing my neck. I could never explain how it had got there. And history was rewritten by my parents as a result that impacted seriously on my life for years to come.

However the point of this post is not to write about my past, otherwise I'll be writing for hours and hours!

The point is today for the first time since that horrible episode I have confronted my fears. I have always been happy to go to the cinema with other people. But in the last 15 years, there hasn't always been someone around, and so I have waited for any film I wanted to see to come out on DVD. I could not bring myself to go to the cinema alone.

I couldn't work out why, after all if I can drive round the Washington beltway as a Brit going to stay with a complete stranger; if I can travel transatlantic by myself; if I can travel by train half away across Germany, why couldn't I go to our local cinema.

And finally I thought to myself maybe I could do it. I wanted to to see the latest George Clooney cause he's gorgeous. So by spending some time allowing my mind to open as to what the difficulty was, I finally unearthed the memory of that horrible night when I was 14.

So this afternoon I went armed with the knowledge that if anyone came near me I could now shout or scream. That I am no longer powerless to have things done to me.
That my self esteem is strong and that I have choices about who or when I have things to do with people, without being dependant on them for approval.

And it was a mixture of difficult and easy. It didn't feel nice when the girl on the cash desk, after I asked for one ticket, looked at and said 'you just want one?'
But actually sitting down and losing myself in a movie was easy.

So I have broken a bad magic spell that has held me in its thrall for many years. And now I know that lonely Saturday afternoons can now be escaped by a good dose of movie wonder rather than feeling trapped at home.

21 comments:

Helen said...

Bravo, bravo!!!!!!

Paula said...

Congrats. You go girl and have brillinat saturdays dreaming away at the cinema. Well done

kj said...

i totally love this. it is inspirational. chaulk up another fear released. i know how great that feels.

ps a fine piece of writing...

xoxo
kj

Zan said...

=) Yay! Must admitt, I am never one to go to the cinema by myself, or even the pub by myself, not even a cafe! But I will get there too, even if it takes 40 years!
You go!!!!

xx

Von said...

Onya Girl!!!!!A whole world has opened up to you!
Did you stop flirting? it can be so disempowering and unnecessary when you're in touch with your real self and intentions.

lakeviewer said...

Yeah! Good spell breaker! And wasn't he fantastic?

Sorrow said...

Yeah! I see the angel is flying!
dance!

Pam said...

Good on you Mandy! You're doing great and it will be easy-peasy in no time. When you look around,there are often a lot of women sitting by themselves. Not discounting your trauma,I'm sure you'd be amused to know, being about five years older than you at the time of your incident, I had the strange experience of a stray duck giving me a huge hickey on the neck. It flew over our back fence when I lived at home when I was about 18 years old.Amazed, I lifted it up. No-one knew where it came from.Unlike your unpleasant parental dealings,I had no trouble with mine, as they witnessed the whole biting incident and thought it was hilarious, because the duck would just not let go.The more I tried to force it away, the more it latched on.The result did not look good. The problem was with work collegues and workmates.Someone said "Yeah, and I bet you used to say the dog ate your homework too!"...and it was really choice when I had to meet advertising clients that week with radio copy and a highly unlikey story. Hickey-Schmickey...don't beat yourself up about it.Even though you had no idea where he came from either,at least the young lad let go!! and most people (parents excluded)are amazingly forgiving of adolescent adventures/curiosity.My father berated me for a pair of my knickers that came blew off the clothes line and ended up in the driveway. "What's THIS" he thundered.So yes, bravo..and there are a lot of good films out there!p.s. George Clooney can bite my neck any day.Just be thankful you got that hickey in the time-frame that dentures weren't left hanging when you pulled away!Hope that helps with the guilt 'cause Mums in those days were good at that!xxxxx

Pam said...

..bloody hell! Did I write that much!

Lady in red said...

I am so pleased for you and now maybe I can follow your exmple because I want to see that film too and like you I never want to go on my own but in the last few days have been contemplating it.


I am sure I will now have more confidence to go.

Thank you and hugs as always

Grammy said...

That is wonderful. It is so freeing to let go and over come a fear. You did great!

Barry said...

Amazing how the past can still constrain us. Congratulations for freeing yourself.

Although I didn't especially like Up In The Air, although I hope you did.

Ronjazz said...

Seems that we all are going through our own kind of synthesis. It's a strange thing, living life sometimes. You never know...you just never know. I'm glad that this has given you some new joy, honey.

nitebyrd said...

It's amazing after all these years that you figured out why! How wonderful and liberating it must have been to enjoy that movie without fear.

Congratulations, girl! You're really incredible!

Anonymous said...
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Mel said...

Yup, 'bloody hell', Pam...you DID write that much--and thank you for doing so! LOL I actually needed to read it.

And Byrdie--I can't think of someone better to break the spell with than George Clooney. ;-)

Beyond 'good' for you--all the freedom is yours!

(((((((( the byrdie ))))))))

Lia said...

Well done for putting away the ghosts and over coming your fears.
Much love
Lia
xx

miss*R said...

fan-bloody-tastic Miss Pix !!!! xoxo

Lyn said...

Yay! NOw you are free to sit in a darkened theatre, popcorn in hand, anytime you wish! You are free - free at last. And hey - it certainly opens up a few more entertainment possibilities. Funny how we can always trace these things back ....

cheshire wife said...

Thank you for visiting my blog.

Congratulations on breaking the spell. I often used to go to the cinema alone before I was married.

Walker said...

Feels good doesn't it?
The power is yours.
Bring an umbrella along to, just on case whacking is required