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When ‘Being There’ Just Isn’t Enough…

Most of the time I’m positive about my life and the way I grew up. I know to a lot of people who were raised by loving parents my childhood probably seems pretty horrific, and some of it was I guess, but I have this knack of putting the dark stuff to the back of my mind, the bad stuff is there but masked by the good times, and against the odds I have hundreds of thousands of brilliant memories…

I made the best friends during my 15 years in care and none who understand me better than those who I shared the good times with. There’s an unsaid agreement that you don’t ask what your care brothers and sisters are ‘in’ for but at the same time there’s an understanding between you. No-one’s in care because they had fluffy homelives, it doesn’t work like that does it? I thought everyone’s parents were like mine until I was 7 or 8 and I realised that people don’t like to hear about your experiences if they’re not pink and fluffy so I invented a life before care in true Tracy Beaker style and would relay these stories to all my friends outside of the care system! lol

But the teenage years were the hardest, this is when you really realise that your experiences are so totally different to other people’s and guilt about events in your life sets in. You may try to tell a friend at school by easing into it really slowly, giving a tiny snippet of information and then their shock is so obvious you laugh it off as a joke and retract the initial statement you made and get on with it, knowing that you will never be ‘on the same level’ as your friends.

This is when your care siblings become closer than any of your childhood friends, they ‘get you’, they’ve had similar experiences so you’re tolerant of each other’s mood swings and anger outbursts. When you leave care and lose touch it’s the loneliest feeling in the world.

When I left care I was more alone than I’d ever been before and first got the keys to a crappy bedsit at 16/17, well shared house really. I got moved into 2 or 3 bedsits until I settled in the last one. I was the only female and in the room to one side was 3 heroin addicts straight out of Brixton jail and on the other side a 40 year old pimp who scared the shit out of me so badly that when he tried to kill one of the other guys in the house with a hammer and hid the hammer in my room I said nothing and silently agreed to share his bed for the night so when the police turned up I would be his alibi… I once saw him chase his missus with a meat cleaver then beat her to a pulp so I wasn’t going to get on the wrong side of him.  downstairs was a fucked up ex copper and a 65yr old knicker stealing alcoholic so life as a care leaver wasn’t the best but you make the best of a bad situation and get on with it with the help of drugs and boys and alcohol and petty crime until you’re 18 and social services helps get the ultimate prize… your own council flat.

Anyhow, because of the joys of social networking and facebook, I’ve been reunited with a few of my care brothers and sisters and though it’s made me happy, of course it has, the people that I grew up with, fought with, cried with and laughed with were back on the scene… but it has brought with it a new heartache.. the realisation that life could have been different as it has been for so many of my siblings.

To find out that for some suicide was the best option has broken my heart and I’m left thinking ‘why wasn’t I there for you earlier’. For others prostitution was their way to get through life, for a fair few hard drugs, for others alcohol, for many crime and jail and some of these haven’t made it as far as the rest of us… but the ones who my heart aches the most over are the ones who tried so hard to break the cycle and failed… not through any real fault of their own, but because of shitty circumstances the children they love so much have been taken from them and placed in the same system that fucked us all up and made us the way we are.

These are the ones I want to help the most but I feel useless and ‘being there’ for them just isn’t enough to make a difference in their circumstances and it’s an excruciating pain that the friends you once considered your brother or sister are going through that.

There is no happy ending to this post for now, I can only hope that being positive and being here when they need me is enough to get them through the next day, and the day after…

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Posted by on September 17, 2013 in Life, The Past.

 

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Things Will Always Get Better!

Well I’ve been neglecting my blogs lately, I’ve always been a bit of a procrastinator! But here I am, better late than never and a bit more positive than last time!
The husband has gotten a new job which pays slightly better. It’s only a stopgap because he is in the running for another job which pays exceptionally more than both and offers more in the way of promotion. So finger’s crossed on that one, we may just get out of the financial shit creek we’re in!

Anyhow, thinking positively, my crafting is going well, especially the crochet blankets and rice charms, it’s so rewarding when people appreciate something you spend so much time and effort creating.

The school holidays are going well, we’ve had some great days out.  A group of us had a picnic in the park for a friends birthday, the kids played happily and the princess juice was flowing for us mums, it was one of those carefree days where everyone’s happy.
Then we had the pirate adventure in the woods… 7 adults and 11 kiddies = another great day out.
We’ve had a few days in the park that became more hours than planned but I love it when you don’t have to check the time and you’re engrossed in good conversations with friends.

My cousin is coming out of care this month and as I write to her, I’m hoping for a meeting at some point. Some details in her files sit badly with me as I know she was blamed for things she didn’t do and I want her to know the truth, there is no reason for a child to be blamed for another child’s injury when it was one of the parents, it is disgraceful. I can’t wait to see how she’s grown and how she’s doing. I can’t wait to tell her what a precious little girl she was and how we love her and truly missed her. How we have a photo of her in our living room right next to her cousins. I want her to know we never forgot her. And most of all, I don’t want her to feel like I did when I was her age…

 

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God Bless Tariq Jahan.

After my last 2 posts on the London rioting which had spread across major cities in the UK, I was moved to tears tonight by a dignified man clutching a photo of his son who along with 2 other young men, were killed in last night’s rioting. This is a tragic end to 3 young men’s lives and completely needless.

Tariq Jahan’s words are ringing in my ears and they are now all over twitter and Tariq Jahan’s name is trending.

The words that seem to have brought the rioting to a standstill;  “I have lost my son – if you want to lose yours step forward, otherwise calm down and go home. Please. I believe in divine fate and destiny, and it was his destiny and his fate, and now he’s gone” Tariq Jahan

His dignity, wisdom and faith has done more tonight than any politician, police officer, or community leader has done all week. My thoughts and prayers are with the family. May they get peace now.

RIP Haroon Jahad, 21, Shazad Ali, 30 and Abdul Musavir, 31

Michael Seamark says in the Daily Mail;

  • Tariq Jahan Urges people not to seek revenge for his son’s death
  • Desperately tried to perform CPR on his dying son Haroon, 21
  • Brothers Shazad Ali, 30 and Abdul Musavir, 31, were the other fatalities
  • Trio were were knocked down by a car doing 50mph
  • Prime Minister offers his condolences to the victims’ families
  • Racial tensions simmer in Winson Green area of Birmingham

It would have been so easy to demand ‘an eye for an eye’ and risk a race war on the riot-torn streets.

But with immense dignity, Tariq Jahan, whose 21-year-old son was mown down and killed in an apparently racist murder in Birmingham, appealed for calm yesterday.

Haroon Jahan was one of three young Muslims who died after they were thrown into the air ‘like tennis balls’ when they were hit by a car which mounted the pavement at 50mph while they were trying to protect local shops from looters on Tuesday night.

With some Muslims calling for ‘retribution’, 45-year-old Mr Jahan – who desperately tried to revive his dying son – urged people not to seek revenge.

Standing on a wall in front of a crowd he said: ‘I lost my son. Blacks, Asians, whites – we all live in the same community.

‘Why do we have to kill one another? Why are we doing this?

‘Step forward if you want to lose your sons. Otherwise, calm down and go home – please.’

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2024375/BIRMINGHAM-RIOTS-Tariq-Jahan-tells-thugs-killed-son-Haroon-2-friends.html#ixzz1Ufo01iMP

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This was never about race. It was about the youth of today violently vandalising and stealing from their own communities.

Now it’s an excuse to blame everyone else, it’s always someone else’s colour, someone else’s faith, someone else’s culture.

Let’s not keep overshadowing these issues, these deaths. Let us deal with issues as they come and move forward….

And accept that we are all responsible in some small way.

 
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Posted by on August 11, 2011 in Believe, Faith, Family, Life, News, Thoughts

 

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