I deleted this because I wanted to first ask my lovely friend if it was okay to post. It feels like a dramatic step over into the overly personal..bits of my life that I tape iup, box up and only look at in safety. But, Nicoles comment (see first attempt) made me re-think. Honesty is important.
I set up this Blog because I wanted to draw stupid shit, make people smile and because I wanted to show that sufferers of significant mental health issues belonged and we not circus freaks.
Everyone has Lovely Friends but I have been thinking recently a lot about mine. Aside from my sister I have a small but sturdy handful of utterly amazing friends.
Considering my return to the world in the form of an MA has caused a dramatic spike in memories of my Undergrad degree, as well as a lot of good, old fashioned nail biting contemplation.
Contemplation used to lead to a locked bathroom door and shameful, sad acts of violence towards myself. These days it leads to a overwhelming feeling of gratitude. I am more than enamored at this change in mindset and wanted to write a post a one of the reasons, or people, behind it.
I met Emma on my first day of University and I think I did a pretty epic job of freaking her the fuck out and considering hightailing the fuck out of our slightly odd smelling student housing.
I have not always had the stellar social skills I now own as a full time recluse and expert nutjob. Considering my return to the world in the form of an MA has caused a dramatic spike in memories of my Undergrad degree. I spoke too much and was anxious when I shouldn’t be. I was scared of the non-existant bearded men at my windows. I was reculse then in your face. I was strange. I was sad.
It was not easy, the degree was not easy. There were books, word counts, exams and portfolios. But I think the things around my degree were harder. There was the battle of my eating disorder, self harm, scary medical shit and psychosis.
Emma, the Boyfriend/make that fiancé and other-amazing-friend-who-shall-not-yet be named pulled me through the worst of everything, and the best.
Emma was there to dress up in stupid costumes for parties with, to drink tea with, to dance (badly, on my part) with. She was there to hand me whatever current cocktails or psych meds I was on. She was once the not-so-proud owner of my razor blades when I decided I was ‘quitting for real, this time’, she was there when I needed ambulances, when there was police, she sat up to stupid ‘o’clock in the morning in the waiting room of A&E god knows how many times.
Em drew me rabbits (and naked ladies) and together we decorated rooms for parties. She fed me Jamie Oliver food, and muffins I can never re-create (not for the want of nagging Boyfriend anyway!)
Em helped me cover up my illicit Bunny Rabbit purchase (RIP Geoffrey) and she pretended not to smoke outside with me and Boyfriend.
And somewhere in between picking me off the floor, finding herself, making her own friends, drinking tea, loving Jamie Oliver and pulling me up from some of the worst times in my life, ever, she managed to get a BA in Fine Art…
She drew, and drew, and painted and painted and threw ink and knitted and knitted and knitted and drew and knitted and spray painted and crocheted and painted and inked and sew and sew and sew and embroidered and knitted and knitted and drew…and she did fantastically.
I love and hate the space between my Undergrad and now. I hate it because it means Uni was just memories. I hate it because I miss it, I miss my friends. I miss mornings balancing tea on a kitchen table piled so high with books, art projects, half empty wine glasses and dead plants we never threw away – and being unable to balance the tea because the night before we had spent all night chatting or watching yet another film…or opening yet another bottle of wine, or playing more cards or colouring in kids books and covering the wall.
I love that space because I have watched my friends grow. I Em, as I always guessed she would, is amazing and doing the art thing while also doing a billion and one things I can’t keep up with. I love it because yet another series of Casualty has passed and Charlie Fairhead is still going strong. I love it because if time had not passed I would not be engaged to the most amazing BoyMan.
I am excited/terrified/hopeful about my MA and I am looking forward to new words, new skills and new friends – but no-one has friends like the ones I already have – and no-one has an arty, lovely, funny, sarcastic, strange Emma T like mine.
I write this mostly because I want the world/blog-o-sphere to know about my experiences. Mad people have friends. Mad people go to Uni. But also living with all this stuff, it is not easy on other people either. I do not think many people would take me on as a friend if they knew where it had taken Emma, Boyfriend and co. To be truthful I am positive that there have been times Emma and co have doubted their own decisions to remain in my life.
I do not do spoonfuls of sentiment often without the aid of Vodka.
I just wanted to air what was on my mind –and how I know how lucky I am to have someone who was willing to learn how to push a wheelchair for me!! (in Wales –upward slopes abound)
This is my Emma T, with her fabulous and fantastic art (which she sells, like a clever bunny)
and a sample of her art that she showed in an exhibition