mckarlie

I have happiness in my heart and a thorn in my soul

You let me down

You convinced me that it was all my fault that you were never there

You had me believing it was my doing, the reason you didn’t care

You let your men abuse me, however they chose to do

And the blame you’d place on anyone else, anywhere but on you

They tell you to move on, forget and learn to forgive

But you fucked up my childhood and sometimes it’s barely a life I live

I spent months cooped up in my house, all sad and alone

All because when I was small you brought violence into our home

You focus on all the bad things, that I have ever done

You convince yourself I was just a rotten kid, your fault in this is none

You think yourself above me and in you’re so deep in denial

Now as a Mother myself, I honestly find you vile

Yes I’m angry, yes i’m hurt, you were meant to look after me

But you were more concerned with men and your own inane vanity

I had to stop seeing you ’cause you only bring me down

In your eyes you reached out to me, it’s my fault you’re not around

But if you had just once said I’m sorry, just once said I’m wrong

I might have been able to forgive you, we could have found a place to belong

But you insist you had no part in tearing my psyche wide apart

If that’s what you need to do to sleep at night

Then go along with your bullshit dear, pretend you’re always right

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The one who was meant to love me

Mother you were meant to keep me safe from harm

When he came at me you were meant to disarm

But you couldn’t be found anywhere

And after the damage you’d avoid my stares

All those nights you heard me cry

I needed you but you didn’t try

Instead you hid and let them harm

Your baby by your lover’s arm

Now that I am grown

You don’t call me your own

They hurt me so much I cracked

You say it all happened behind your back

So all the violence left scars

And you were never very far

So I wont wear a smile for you

You feel sorry for yourself is what you do

What an ungrateful child you had

From the day she was born she must have been bad

She should thank you for all you’ve done

You taught her to drink and how to have fun

Some children would kill for that

I just want my childhood back

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Monster in my bed – a reading

This is a reading of my poem “Monster in my bed” it is intended for the ears of adults and is NSFW. I did this to push myself, it wasn’t easy but I hope it’s understood. Peace.
(will only work in safari, chrome and firefox i believe)

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Pain my way

All these words have left me spent

All these notions left unsaid

I stew away in my own anguish

Replaying things over in my head

They tell me not to over-think

But hiding from things brought me to the brink

Hiding secrets and eating pain

Is no way for peace and joy to gain

I took a light and shone it deep

No longer will these secrets keep-

Me hostage in my own damn mind

For peace is in reach, it’s mine to find

My words aren’t pretty but they are true

Open minds can see what I do

The more I write the louder I shout

The more the sadness creeps on out

And in it’s place I find the reach

For happiness, love and peace

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Monster in my bed

I hear my Mother leave, so I pull the sheets above my head

The floorboards sound their warning ‘he’s coming to your bed’

Creak and creak I hear, step after step after step

My body goes still all of a sudden, and tightly I hold my breath

The door slowly opens, slithers of light pierce through the dark

I peak through the sheets and see him, his eyes wide and stark

He turns on the lamp – I see his body amp

“Hello precious” he murmurs, as he slithers across the floor

Pausing for a moment, he’s forgotten to shut the door

He makes his way over, I whimper “no” but it’s too late

Now his eyes are blazing, he’s chosen me for his plate

He sits himself at the end of my bed and quickly yanks the sheet

I see him rub his trousers then move his hands onto my feet

I hear his fettered breathing, moving his hand up my leg

I let out an infant whimper, he tells me not to beg

He puts his finger somewhere soft that it makes his hand feel rough

Now he’s laced with great enthuse, he cannot get enough

He seems to expect me to like it, but all I can do is cry

None of this seems right to me and I cannot figure out why

This man is touching part of me no one’s allowed to see

All I hear are tears and breath, it feels like something’s inside of me

In one foul swoop he jumps up, and lays right by my side

Moving me into position, I feel him move something along my thighs

It’s hard but soft and frightens me, he’s moaning in my ear

My body stiffens like a board, silent and frozen with fear

Suddenly he shoves back, letting out an unholy grunt

Standing up and wiping down he says “not a word you little cunt”

“Do you think Mummy would love you, if she knew how you’re a naughty girl

So keep your little mouth shut or I’ll destroy your whole damn world”

He leaves my room and shuts the door, sitting down to watch tv

I curl up in confusion and cry, what’s just happened here to me?

I’m scared so I stay quiet, I did not speak a word

And so for years and years it’s been, his sins have gone unheard

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Repressed memories

I’ve been writing a lot of poetry lately, i’ve found it quite cathartic to analyze issues and things that have happened that i have previously tried to avoid thinking about as it hurt to do so. but writing about it seems to take it’s power away, shining a light on a problem and bringing it out of the darkness seems to bring some kind of healing.

For years I have effectively ‘known’ about some unpleasant things that happened when i was between the ages of 7-9, but i have kept them hidden deep down inside, like a monster hiding in the darkest caverns of my subconscious.

Just now i wrote a poem about the first night it occurred. And i thought airing the monster would bring a sense of relief. But i’m feeling numb and restless, is this something common?

I have been dealing with things repressed to a certain extent, but this was way way deep down, and now it’s been confronted, i just feel kind of empty.

I’m sure others have drudged up repressed memories, is this something common or am i the exception to the rule? should i be crying or asking why?

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You were gone

I wish that you could see, that the blame is not on me

I wish that you could see, all the harm you caused to me

You were the one that was meant to be there

But when I called, you weren’t anywhere

You were the one to love me, when all others were gone

But you left me alone and broken

What could I have done so wrong?

You wanted me to be like you, but I was something else

So you moved on to another, and left me on a shelf

Too difficult to deal with, who cares for such a thing

I was just a child, I didn’t think to bring

Armor to my own home, protection from your care

‘Cause you were meant to keep me safe, but you weren’t anywhere

All those times he hurt me, I cried out for your help

But you didn’t come running and I couldn’t help myself

He was strong and angry, I was small and frail

The fact that you don’t love me stings as my greatest fail

And now I can’t forgive you but I can do better than you did

The life that grew inside me is the reason that I live

Your mistakes will not be my own

Your ways will not carry on within my home

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Bipolar and guilt

I have spoken to some people this week about their experience with bipolar disorder, and there have been a few common themes that seem to run amongst those of us with bipolar, guilt is at the forefront.

See a lot of us, especially as teenagers, acted badly. We weren’t stable and acted out in so many different ways. A lot of us still act out as adults, shutting people out and distancing ourselves from relationships and things that feel confronting or outside our somewhat tiny comfort zone. And that’s the thing about a comfort zone, mine is always changing depending on my mood. If i’m stable and doing well i’m a positive, accepting and open person, I like spending time with my friends and seek them out, but if i’m low, I want to shut the whole world out and there’s little wiggle room for socializing.

I learned through therapy that it wasn’t my fault that i was such a “bad” person as a teenager and that i’ve done some shitty things to people. It is in part the bizarre upbringing I had and in part the bipolar. Since this epiphany, I’ve been letting go of the guilt, and it’s amazing what a chain reaction it has. I’ve started to heal, instead of accepting that i’m just a shit and terrible person and trying to hide my issues with denial or pot or booze or whatever means i could, i’ve been shining a light on them and really thinking about the issues of my past and present that plague me. I don’t think I could confront my problems if i hadn’t let go of the guilt, and that’s not to say i don’t still get pangs of guilt, i most certainly do, but i just remind myself that with my condition, there’s bound to be some crazy behaviour, and i had little control over it at the time, hell i didn’t even find out i was bipolar till quite recently.

So for those of you who feel like you’re just running through the same motions, the same cycle of up and down and round and round, it can be broken. Usually the right meds are part of it, but letting go of the guilt and not hiding from the problems we have is also so important. I know it’s easy to say “let go” but seriously, it wasn’t your fault. You have an illness. If a person with cancer has symptoms, no one judges them, they’re sick, and their illness has consequences, so does ours. The consequences to our illness is our moods, our sensitivity to negativity, and our guilt over past stupidity or bad actions.

Just remember, it’s not your fault. You have an illness, it’s not your fault.

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Finished for another day

I hear the footsteps down the hall

I hide my face, my stomach falls

I hear a thump and then a thud

But he manages to get back up

The door swings open, I cry out “no”

He grunts “c’mon girl it’s time to go”

He stumbles over and grabs my feet

I hold on tight beneath my sheet

Pulled to the floor from my safe warm bed

He lays a smack upon my head

“You’re gonna learn this time” he says

My heart is pounding, I start to beg

I cry and scream “please no, I’m sorry”

But he carries on without a worry

The first few hurt but then I’m numb

Just shut your mouth, he’ll soon be done

I take my knocks and pull away

He seems finished for another day

Rolled up in a ball, I continue to cry

He wipes his brow and with a smile wry

He tells me that I’m pathetic and sad

All I can say is “I’m sorry Dad”

He slams the door behind him

His footsteps fade away

I stay still and thank the Lord

He’s finished for another day

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My balls out blog

I haven’t written a blog in years, i’ve been uhmming and ahhing over it for some time, opened numerous accounts with different sites and never followed through, until now. i’m an all or nothing person for the most part and if i’m going to blog, i want to do it honestly, “balls out” as it were, and the notion of being completely honest about myself in blog form was somewhat daunting. i even wrote and published a pissy attempt a week or two ago, it was some poorly written vague overview of the last ten years of my life, it was a real piece of wank. but, here goes…

i’m a somewhat passionate person, i feel too much a lot of the time. probably in part due to being bipolar and the crazy upbringing i had. i was born to a single mother, to say i was a mistake would be quite the understatement but i’ll go into that another time. my mother was only 20 when she had me, my grandparents were incredibly religious folk and weren’t terribly thrilled at their 20 year old having a child out of wedlock so for the first month of my life we lived in a flat in springvale (for those who know melbourne, it’s a bit of a shithole on the way to the beach where you can probably buy heroin with great ease) after which my grandparents relented and we moved into the family home in burwood.

for the first 7 years of my life we lived with my grandparents and it was very much me and her, we were thick as thieves. as my memory recalls it, a man randomly popped up and married my mother, i can’t tell you how long they dated before they got married but it can’t have been very long because the next thing i knew we were moving into a house they purchased in vermont. his name was andrew, he seemed nice enough at first, his parents lived in balwyn and owned a plane, they took their cat to a cat psychologist and had very fancy things and went to very fancy places. i never really felt comfortable around his family, they were neurotic and incredibly focused on privilige, and i’m quite sure they didn’t really care for me either. i’m sure i seemed like quite the little steamroller in their crystal palace.

after about six months my stepfather andrew showed his true colours as the monster that he truly was and let’s just say his true nature was abusive. i don’t think my mother knew anything for a while, but two years into the marriage she picked me up from ballet one saturday afternoon and instead of driving home we started driving in the opposite direction, “aren’t we going home mum?” i asked, “no, we’re not going there again” she replied, and that was all the explanation i got on the matter. we proceeded to a house in hawthorn where she introduced me to a 25 year old chef named michael, he lived in a house with 4 others who were a mix of chefs and students. i’m not sure how long she’d been seeing him on the side or how they met, any of the details, but they were together.

the house in hawthorn was party central, and i was quite the 9 year old novelty. my mother prided herself on my expansive vocabulary (not so much now, but at 9 i was slightly ahead of the curve) and my ability to cook my own meals. my room was effectively a large closet, full of workout equipment not being used and boxes and junk, i had a small mattress on the floor and quite often i would be invaded at all hours to ‘perform’ for the drunk/drug fucked revellers in the house. i remember one night in particular, the girlfriend of one of the chefs who lived in the house came into my “room” and started asking why her boyfriend wouldn’t commit and what could she do to encourage him to love her more. i was effectively a human eight ball.

after six months or so we ended up back at the family home with my grandparents, (which was now located in forest hill) because michael took a job on one of the resort islands off the north coast of the northern territory. his brother lived in darwin and he wanted to be closer to him, my mother went into a fairly deep depression, i remember some days she’d just lay in bed in the dark, eyes red and watery and a far away look, it was bleak. but then my grandparents were brilliant, not without their faults of course, but brilliant. i think that’s how i ended up being somewhat of a paradox, spending half of my childhood with my mother and the other half with my grandparents was like jumping between different realities. my grandparents were classic middle class, well set up financially, nice things but not flashy. they were deeply religious and took me to church often. my grandfather and i would watch old rogers and hammerstein musicals and my grandmother often took my cousin and i to the ballet or theatre.

when i was about ten, my mum decided to bounce back from her breakup with michael and started frequenting a pub in south yarra called the argo, and somehow i ended up spending a lot of time there too. appropriate, right? yeah. she became obsessed with an alcoholic guitarist named JD, she went to every one of his band’s gigs and i would usually sit to the side of the stage, often falling asleep under tables or wherever i could find a modicum of space. from what i can recall of the situation, they must have slept together but he was reluctant to commit further, my mother would ward off any other females that showed interest in him, i remember her drinking from yardies and her name being chanted as she chugged away. JD lived quite far away, in Corio, which is waaaaay over the other side of town and then a bit farther. one night we drove all the way there, found he wasn’t home and slept in the car in his driveway. i remember needing the toilet and my mother making me poo in his garden, yeah, it was bleak. haha, what a memory. he turned up some time during the next day, they had ‘grown up’ discussions then we left, all i heard of him after then was that he’d gone to rehab in america.

the next year was like a buddy movie, me and mum against the world. she dated a string of barnies, but it was a revolving door, no one stayed for long. she would often decide last minute that she wanted to get away, no matter if it was the dead of winter or whenever, she would get it in her head to go and we’d go. we often stayed at a place called bells cottages near bells beach, or the cabins at the torquar foreshore were another favourite. we’d always go for a couple of nights. i remember when i was 10, we were at torquay and i divulged that i’d tried a cigarette with some kids after school, she gave me one of hers and told me to show her. i took the cigarette and lit it up, puffing away like i’d seen bette davis do in those old movies i’d watched with my grandfather, my mother told me that if i was going to smoke i was going to do it properly, so at the age of ten she taught me to draw the smoke back, no point wasting money on cigarettes if you’re not getting the nicotiney goodness right?

i was 11 when my mother met mark. she had left a really good job at an export company in south yarra and started working part time at the local video store. he was a tradesman doing work at the video store and something big must have happened, because all of a sudden we were spending every friday night driving an hour to pick him up, he’d then stay the weekend and we would drop him home on sunday night (turns out he had lost his license for drink driving, onto another winner). within six months they moved in together, literally six houses around the corner from my grandparents house. my world started to fall apart, i went from being her bestie, spending every moment with her and getting every whim catered to, to being second best to her new man. he was most important now, and i knew it. he had a penchant for alcohol in excess, and the drunker he got, the meaner he became. the physical and emotional abuse followed soon after, i was a chubby kid and he would call me a fat fuck or lardo, whatever felt right to him at the time. he would throw me about and she would yell at him, but nothing really changed. it kept happening, and only got worse when she got pregnant approximately 9 months into their relationship, so i moved in with my grandparents for a while.

just before the baby was born my mother told me things were going to be different, he was drinking less and it would be ok, so i moved back in with them. the day my sister was born i came home from school to find the house locked, no one was there, they’d literally forgotten me. i broke into the house. things were a little better for a few months, i helped out with my sister a fair bit, changing nappies and the usual stuff, but then he got worse again and it was a new kind of bad, so again i moved in with my grandparents, stable and safe again.

i was now 14 or so, and my mother and mark had managed to piss all their money away and weren’t getting by so they all moved in with my grandparents, my mother, mark, my sister ashlee all moved in. my mother was pregnant again. things were tense but we all got by, but after a little while mark felt comfortable enough to start abusing me in my grandparents house, never in front of my grandparents, but still….it kept on. my mother would always tell me the next day that it would change, he was going to get help or he was going to change, but she had started her new family with this man and it was growing increasingly clear that there was little room for me in her new family unit.

i would spend most of my time in my bedroom on the internet, i avoided people at all costs for a great portion of my teenage years. people online were safer, and i created my own little cave of safety. mark would have goes at me whenever he could, so the moment i turned 18 i went to spencer st station and got on the first bus leaving for sydney, i had made a friend online in sydney and i stayed with him and his wife before heading to byron bay for a while. i stayed there for a few months, working at a backpackers for my keep, i met a lot of great people but it was at this point it started to become clear to me that i didn’t fit in with most people, not many people ‘got’ me, so i put up a front of indifferent toughness, i would travel anywhere on a whim, take up dares of any idiotic notion presented to me really, i was finally away from him and i had a lot of anger bubbling underneath. i ran out of money and missed my grandparents so i called them and my grandfather bought me a train ticket back to melbourne, i was only back a month or so when i met a guy and fell crazy head over heels (or at least what i thought was true deep love) for him. he was in melbourne visiting his uncle and aunt, he lived in tasmania, when we met he only had 3 days left in melbourne but the chemistry was crazy so he extended his stay to ten days, after which we decided i would move to tasmania to be with him. i lost my virginity to him and it was perfect, it all seemed too good to be true, i was addicted. i finally had a man’s love and it seemed secure and good. so no more than 3 weeks after meeting, i went to tasmania. my grandfather gave me some cash and i stayed a couple of nights in a hotel before we found a rental and moved in with one of his uni friends.

i was hideously codependent and the relationship ended badly after a year and a bit, so i ran back to melbourne, then back to tasmania, then back to melbourne – we did the back and forth dance for a while till both of us lost our fight and he stood me up on new years, he was meant to be flying up for the big 2000, but he called me from the airport and told me he wasn’t coming, that we just weren’t going to work. he was right of course, but i was heartbroken, so when i met a goofy drummer who was in melbourne with his band doing some gigs around the place, and he wanted me, i decided i wanted him too. i followed him to new zealand where he was from, but was miserable within days. to this day i feel bad for how i treated him, it wasn’t his fault, but it just wasn’t what i wanted or needed. i was 19 and had no concept of what a rebound was but he was a classic rebound. i lived there for 8 months or so and after selling a painting and gathering my fare back to melbourne, i told him i had to visit family and never went back.

next i met my husband, andrew. we got married after only six months together, he is english and when his visa ran out, we moved to england. it was quite the culture shock, i had no idea how isolated i would feel on the other side of the world but after a number of years and having two babies in the uk, we decided to move back to australia for some family support.

we’ve been back here now for about six years, the family support thing didn’t work out so well but i’ll go into that another day, i wanted to sum up my formative years and i think i’ve done that, now…. to post this insanely personal blog?

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