When I was a kid, my siblings and I used to get sent down the local park by my mother whenever she got sick of us all. This happened often.
We made good use of this time by finding other local kids to fight.
Though I spent the majority of my childhood devising ways to avoid my siblings at all costs, there is something that really brings the family together about forming a gang and beating other children up.
(This was a mutual exercise. All parties involved seemed to enjoy inflicting pain and hurling low-quality insults backwards and forwards.)
One day my brother kicked an older boy off the climbing frame and into the sand a metre and a half below.
He was winded.
He thought he was dying.
I’m generally a pretty dramatic person, but this was next level. There was talk on both sides of what we were going to do with the body, could we chuck it in the lake, also should someone find an adult.
Eventually, he recovered, threw some choice words our way, and limped off.
He was completely fine in the end.
Despite this eventual conclusion, there was a time of panic. Colour drained from his face, horror from his friends, denial from my brother. For fifteen minutes nothing in any of our childish lives was okay.
(Honestly, who wants to go home and explain to your mother that you were involved in a casual afterschool murder at the age of eleven?)
Life has knocked the wind out of me. Really, this is the best way I can describe it. Because I mean, I think I know that everything is fine, that I’m just in a state of shock, that it will all pass eventually, but right now I feel like I am dying.
Wind knocked out, dazed, sudden urge to vomit all over the floor at any given moment. Can’t seem to take a deep breath to save my life. Short, sharp, someone has replaced my lungs with fibreglass.
Eventually, I’ll get my breath back. I’ll be fine, if not a little bruised.
Sometimes you just need a random memory of that time you thought you’d killed a boy to remind you that all is ultimately okay.
Until then, I am going to try and not hate myself too much, also drink a lot of tea.
all my love,