dark am i, yet lovely, a lily among thorns, majestic as stars in procession
WHY DESTROY YOURSELF? WHY DIE BEFORE YOUR TIME? THE KEEPERS OF THE HOUSE TREMBLE. DESIRE IS NO LONGER STIRRED. DO NOT CONFORM ANY LONGER TO THE PATTERN OF THIS WORLD.
Thursday, 3 March 2016
End Of Block - Part 3
I've been waiting three months for a tribunal to let me out.
It got cancelled on the day. My solicitor said the doctor's report was so
damning that there was little point in going ahead with it. Fucking great. My
hopes dashed yet again. I'm here for the long haul now. The process is so slow,
it's excruciating. I can't even bear to write about the ins and outs of the
messy details myself. I'm entangled in the system. Even one of the staff said
that it is all corrupt. I'm losing my physique and I'm losing my fitness as a
result. That's not all. My dignity is on the line. If one more person gives me
a lecture about my 'illness' then I fear I'm going to crack up for good. It's making me suicidal again, to be honest. If only I had
the guts, I have more than enough reasons to string up. My life is in total
disarray. I'm trapped. I'm losing motivation and hope. It's a real skill, being
able to look on the bright side, but it's a struggle trying to remain positive
all the time when most of the other residents have been here for two years
plus. I want to tell everyone about microwave harassment but know that they
won't listen to me. It'll just look like I'm succumbing to my so-called condition
of paranoid schizophrenia. My lips are tied shut. I know more than the lot of
them combined, that's the truth. I know that I have gone through a terrible
ordeal and that all this soul-destroying incarceration is a mere consequence of
the trauma. I honestly don't know what is worse, the actual harassment or the
hospitalisation. There is absolutely nothing wrong with me. Nobody has any idea
of the suffering I've been through, and what's more, it's so otherworldly and
complex that it's difficult to comprehend or explain adequately.
And to make it worse, the doctors are writing lies. They
said that I am suspicious and guarded and reporting further hallucinations.
It's not true. I have not reported any symptoms to them. They twist your words
and then put new words in your mouth. Everything is taking time, they keep
shifting the goalposts. It's so unfair. The corridor got flooded this morn, boiling hot water
pouring down from the ceiling. Some cowboy builder stood on a corroded water
pipe in the attic. I was locked out my room all day. This is at the time when
news of the floods in England is all over the TV. I was just thinking about how
unlucky those poor buggers were when I got a small taste of it myself.
Been getting out to the cinema quite a bit recently. I've
seen Black Mass, Krampus, Christmas With The Coopers, and Star Wars. Of these,
Black Mass and Star Wars were the worst. I don't get the hype with Star Wars, I
really don't. It's just another jumped-up remake at the end of the day. Just
another noisy explosive film. I've been doing normal things like shopping for
Christmas decorations too, and every time I am in public I get envious of all
the normal revellers who don't know how lucky they are not to be sectioned
under the mental health act. I've been escorted home to see my girlfriend as
well. She's finding it hard at the minute, relying on food parcels. It turns
out she is not entitled to any benefits. Times are terribly tight for her. I'm
lending my support as much as I can from my very limited position. She needs me
more than ever and I can't do a thing about it because I am locked up. I've
been granted my first period of unescorted leave, just two half hours per day.
It's a start, and things can only get better from here. I just walked to the
local shop alone. It feels weird. I'm a bit rusty when it comes to interacting
with members of the public. Suppose that's to be expected after six months of
detention. And what a detention this is proving to be. Wow. I'd much
rather be in prison. It's going back a few years, but my nine month stint in
jail was a doddle compared to this. I was busy and active in nick, there was
always something to do. A typical day involved doing my laundry job, going to
the gym, having an 11-a-side game of football, going to the education suite for
some writing, going to the library for a game of computer scrabble, having a
game of badmington, playing some snooker, and socialising on a wing full of 100
people. It wasn't mind-numbingly boring like this. All I can do now is either play
pool or watch telly. The crap they watch on telly here! Chronic Channel 5
movies all day long. I'm never watching Channel 5 again when I get out.
First ever Christmas locked up. We had a decent dinner and
put on some party hats but that was about it. Went home on the eve and took a
food hamper for my girlfriend and her son. Last week they had no food in and
now all the cupboards are full. She's still very depressed though. She lost her
job, she lost her home, and she lost me. This is a very trying time for both of
us. More so for her if I'm honest. I might be locked up, but at least I'm not
alone. Then again, I feel pretty alone in here. I've never felt so alone in all
my life. Just because I have company doesn't mean I enjoy it. There's nobody in
here to have a meaningful conversation with. I think we are all alone in here,
actually, together alone. All together alone. Just found out that I'll be getting out in four weeks!
Fabulous! What a relief it is to have a release date. For a while there I
thought this was going to be rolling out for months and months. The end is in
sight! Went home for a visit yesterday though and found nothing but stress. The
TV is broke, the boiler is broke, and the computer is broke. The computer takes
six years worth of work with it. It's my life. All my keyboard music and
photoshop files look like they have bitten the dust. God knows what writing I
have lost as well. I'm really having trouble with all my belongings at the
moment. I don't want to be bogged down by it all. It's a more simple life in
hospital: fewer belongings, less things to go wrong.
They've gone back on their word again now, saying it might
take a few months longer. I give up, I really do. All they do is get your hopes
up and then dash them again. Still, spirits up, the finish line is still in
Andrew has performed his spoken word at Contact Theatre Manchester and South Bank Centre London. His publications include Not Shut Up and The Big Issue. He has collaborated with the creative works of prisoners, patients and refugees. In 2008 his collages were displayed in a Co-operative art exhibition. Since then he has recorded over forty electronic music tracks and designed forty ceramic sculptures. He is currently working on a cyber goth novel while editing a substantial backlist, besides compiling a hardcopy portfolio of digital photo-montages and sketches.
Andrew was ousted from school into a secure psych unit as a teenager. Since then he has been homeless, imprisoned, and detained for several years under the Mental Health Act. Andrew is an ex-addict and a Voice-Hearer. He attempted suicide in the summer of 2015, but manages his demons thesedays by attending therapy groups, where he shares his otherworldly experiences with others. Simple things like poetry and weightlifting help motivate him. He enjoys pool, swimming, and working the punchbag. Andrew is an avid conspiracy theorist.