Part 1 - Dedication

I have dedicated my life to helping people and learning about the human experience.

 So many factors and experiences came into play for me to be the person I am today.

Being born to parents, one of which is very interested in psychology, self growth and working with people. My mother always nourished and encouraged that side of me. I believe I always had these traits, gifts she describes them, a light, a desire to help people, curiosity, joy, most children are born with these gifts but these traits were nurtured in me. 

I also went through many troubling experiences, being born to two parents from previously failed marriages with four hurting half siblings in the mix, as well as my parents complex baggage from their own difficult childhoods. I think many of these aspects gave me specific values, drive and insight.

I experienced tragedy very young. When I was seven, both my grandfathers passed, so did my great grandma, a complex experience for someone so young. The following year my parents separated after many years of arguments and tension. Yes they loved each other and remained friends, but the pressures of trying to sustain the lifestyle they had created ultimately destroyed most positive feelings. By now at age eight, I was dealing with a house move, a new school, separated parents, mum’s new boyfriend a feeling of dislocation, loss, missing my siblings and the way life used to be.

Disaster struck again, unexpectedly when I was ten. My father had a heart attack. He was in hospital, on life support for seven days. I spent most of that time in the hospital, that is all I can remember of that time. Family, my mother, grandmother, aunts, siblings, all gathered around my father who lay unconscious, unmoving, connected to machines in a hospital bed. I was struck by how small he seemed, lying there lifeless, unresponsive. A stark contrast to the large strong force of a man he had always been before. I was also aware of how vulnerable everyone was. All the adults in my life didn’t seems as strong or invincible as they once seemed. I got an early glimpse into human frailty.

My father’s funeral was large, he had been a rock in the family and was known and loved by many. I read a speech at his funeral, although I cannot recall what I said. I felt I needed to honour him. My father. The man who loved me so much and believed I could do or be anything. He certainly had his flaws and I hated the horse bites he gave my knees, but he was dad. And he was everything. And losing him was like tearing out a piece of my soul. An absence that has never and can never be filled by anything other than his memory. For me he lives on in my memories of his love, his encouragement and his belief in me. His daughter, Stacey the unstoppable.

Seven days after my father’s funeral, my Nan died. She has been slowly dying of cancer for some months, but the shock of my father’s death left me unable to truly fathom her death at the time. An uncle had also recently died.

I recall at ten, having attended seven funerals, that life seemed to have a lot to do with death and loss. These experiences turned me inward, I became quiet and I began to read a lot. Looking for fantasy, an escape.

We moved houses a lot, my mother was in a highly unstable relationship with someone I would now describe as a narcissist. My childhood perception saw him as something unpleasant. A selfish man that took away my mother’s attention. I knew the first time I met him he wasn’t going to be good for me or my mother but she was under his spell. The dancing, the cafes, the lifestyle seemed to hypnotise her, she didn’t seem to notice how he manipulated her, mistreated her, craved all her attention, but I did.

So we moved again and again, I changed schools. It wasn’t until year eight, puberty beginning that I began to get angry. Somewhere in February, age thirteen, after a breakup with a close friend who became my first boyfriend, I lost my shit. I was angry, I was livid, seething. Why was life so unfair? Why did I have to lose so much that I had loved? Why did no one have time for me? Where were my siblings? My family? Did anyone love me? Did anyone care? I wrote a lot of angry, angsty poetry. I read a lot of fantasy books. I wanted an escape. I found boys, alcohol and marijuana.

To be continued...


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