Who Let The Geist In?
Maybe, life in England would improve our family? Maybe being in England would make my mother happy, maybe…Who Let The Geist In? Part 2
In 1977, after leaving Australia and sailing half way around the world to return to the United Kingdom to take up full time residence after an absence for me especially of 10 plus years was a hard yank to my emotions. I left England with my parents when l was 2 years of age in 1965, 12 years later l was sailing back. In those 12 years, l had spent my childhood in either Australia or Malaysia and in those same 12 years l had only returned to the UK once in 1970 for a small month long holiday.
My sister who is five years my juinor was born in Australia and so she didn’t know England at all and l can recall easily her upset at the whole affair … however, what did we know, we were just children, our carers – parents were the decision makers of the family and as adults they knew what they were doing …….. right?
If that holds any truth what so ever, l would have to say my parents hid that intelligence pretty damn well from their kids!! Many a time they were clueless to my sister and l except when we were being lashed out at or being used as weapons against the other. Not everyone should have children, l have a firm believer in this and as much as my mother wanted children and the hardships she had to endure to have children, her husband, our father was NOT happy to have kids.
He preferred kids [especially boys] below the age of 10 and above the age of 3 so that emotional pocket zone of his was very slim – my sister fared better, but then she only had to say ‘Daddy darling’ countless times and he was the ideal father figure to her – something which lasted between them as father and daughter and daughter and father from the time she was around 2 to 50 odd, it was only as he was getting older and she was becoming more demanding that his loving thoughts of his daughter began to see someone very different than initially thought.
Of course l didn’t know these things when l was younger, l just assumed that my father only really loved me for 50% of the time and tolerated when not berating me for the remaining 50%. Had l known that in essence he was only going to be a great dad for 7 years – well who knows what might have been different??
I was despite everything closer to my mother, although in truth that did wane as l aged and became more aware of the painful times l was subjected to during unnecessary hospital visits for invisible ailments. But my mother couldn’t talk to my father and so l became her sounding board. She would talk to me of things l didn’t really want to hear from her … for many reasons. I had a hard enough time with my father and tried not to hate him and find where possible some nice things about him, but that was hard, and made harder by my mother complaining bitterly of her marriage and how he had failed her as a husband!
Talks like this to a child from a parent drain you emotionally, you are constantly tired and if also being bullied at home by not just one adult, but both parents, you start to live your life living on a knife edge! That’s how l started to live my life, l didn’t live in a happy family, we were 100% dysfunctional from the get go of our arrival. Although l loved both of my parents – l didn’t always do so out of an emotional love for them … but because l thought that was expected of me as their son, it was my duty.
I had always been quirky, l felt many a time like an outsider looking at myself from another angle, l was at times considered inappropriate by my parents, my teachers and even my peers. I had strange ideas and thoughts and l was horribly shy and preferred my own company. I was labelled with ‘lights on, but nobody at home’ by my teachers – because 1] schooling bored me, 2] the kids in my class took forever to learn anything and so l tended to switch off and 3] because l was a daydreamer who constantly dreamed of living a happier life with parents that both wanted kids.
In addition to that l had even stranger hobbies and behaviour traits, despite being shy l had been fascinated with girls for a very long time, l liked to write very dark horror stories, or ghost stories or stories of mass murder and maiming, l liked to draw grisly scenes, l was constantly talking to myself. I had a series of strange tics and rituals and l was always [not that l knew it at the time] stimming. I was in essence very much a loner and very not bothered by it. Of course to the knowing those are classic traits of Asperger’s/Autism – but back in the 70’s that wasn’t yet a thing.
In addition to that, people regarded me as ‘spooky or creepy’ and the reason they viewed me like that was because of the Gift. I sensed things – energies, essences – strange things in the air, l could smell sound and see numbers in my head of different colours, l could smell things no one else could and see figures out of the corner of my eyes, l could feel when energies passed through me and it made me very conscious of the very air around me and so much of the time l started trying to talk to these figures and ask what they wanted or try to reach out to help them … l tried to communicate with the beyond.
This did not bode well for me from a relatively young age and l remember countless times between the ages of 10 – 15 when l wasn’t able to control my Gift nor really understand it. It got me in trouble frequently and equally got me branded and labelled as mentally unstable and a freak by teachers, friends and even my parents. My sister was convinced her brother was a few planks short of a boardwalk! What made things more frustrating for me was that my mother on one hand would say she understood and yet on the other hand would belittle me for it which l found terribly upsetting considering she introduced me to it in the first place!
My father well ………….. do l need to really explain? He did not approve of his son seeing strange invisible people or things that weren’t there and so he had to be mentally ill, which was his conclusion! Mentally ill people needed to be hospitalised. So l learned to NOT display any outward signs of seeing things that others could not see as l really didn’t wish to go to the place where all ‘the stupid people went’ as my father used to tell me when l was being severely spanked for seeing strange things!
I ended up reading more at a young age and developed a taste for the darkness ………
One of my happiest times during the 70’s and indeed for the family as well was the time we were sailing back to the the UK on the Australis liner. A month voyage from Melbourne to Southampton, stopping at various locations around the world.
Sydney, Auckland, Tahiti, the Panama Canal, Curacao, Puerto Rico and Portugal and if not a location then just days at sea. We felt like a proper family, we had fun, there were no arguments, no overdoses, no conflicts, no father trying to kill mother, no mother trying to kill herself, no sister trying to be an angel and no me having to worry about all of them! We were a family having fun ……….. but not together, we all had fun in different ways and with different members but hardly ever together as a family unit! In 1977 l was 13 going on 40 looking at life and thinking is this how family life is supposed be? Where we don’t really have fun together except when there is no real responsibility?
It mattered not, l could just chill out and relax and for a month not have to worry about anything bad and apart from that one little strange incident a few nights before arriving in Puerto Rico, the trip was a very welcomed break. I mean, there always has to be one thing doesn’t there?
We arrived in the UK on February 26th after a month at sea, relaxed and recharged and ready to face whatever England had to offer us. My mother was relaxed, so too was my father …………….. l wasn’t feeling as apprehensive or dark minded – perhaps our family could finally start to find happiness and peace and maybe feel connected to each other?
By the end of April 1977 l knew that was NEVER going to happen for our family – we were never going to be happy together or maybe ever, living under the same roof, we didn’t belong together, something had to give and soon! Just sometimes, little bad things happen for a reason.
Thanks for reading … Part 4 – Soon.