the thing you are most afraid
- advice to young writers
My mother and I were sat watching the televison when there was a loud hammering on the door.
As a small child, Saturday was my favourite day of the week . After doing the weekly shop, we would go to Woolworths and buy a big bag of sweets to devour whilst watching tv. I can remember so clearly, standing on tip toes to reach up to the carousel of pick a mix, foraging for the toffees with the curly white centre’s and throwing back the ones that didn’t fit the necessary criteria.
Mum was oblivious to the fact that I was stealing and I would pop them in my pocket for later. Lord only knows (a term she often used) what my father would have done if he had caught me stealing!
Years later, Saturday’s were no longer my favourite days.
The hammering came from our neighbour who so graciously accepted the role of emergency contact. She relayed an urgent message from the hospital.
And boy!! Was it an emergency?(well for us it was.)
The nurse on duty had called to warn my mother that my father had discharged himself and was on his way home and said that he was in an highly agitated state.
NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) teaches us about states.
The drugs had created a ‘come down’ reaction and his addiction was pushing his body for more.
There was more at home…
He walked the nearby streets in his dressing gown and slippers, carrying a large old black rectangle suitcase-the kind where if you pushed the side in causing a slight dent, then the dent could easily be pushed back out from the inside. I’m not quite sure the relevance of writing that part-maybe the case with a story attached, may have found its way into someone’s vintage collection by now.
I remember his dressing gown, burgundy and grey checked with a tassled ended belt and I wonder now, what passers by would have possibly thought?
We were absolutely terrified, waiting for the grenade to go off and feeling paralysed, unable to run.
UNABLE TO RUN… I’ve always been a runner!
The fear was so intense that there isn’t a word in my vocabulary to describe what I was feeling.
My mother hid his drugs and we waited.
All Rights Reserved – The boy in the chip shop 2019