Itís Worse When You Know Itís Going To Happen
People always used to talk about winter being the season of Ďdiscontentí, but I for one had always enjoyed it: the excitement, the thrill of the surprise. (unless of course youíve written a letter to ĎSantaĎ, then of course you know what youíre going to get!) I, because I am an only child, always got spoiled.
But all of this changed in the winter of 2003/2004. Somebody I held close to me left. Not the earth, but the country. She was always going to leave. She was never in England permanently, but for two years, possibly longer,. She touched so many different people, in so many different ways. Josefina Castro-Mendez was the name, Argentinean by blood, English by nature. Josefina Castro-Mendez were, and still are to some extent, the three most important words in the english language and the three most important words in my vocabulary.
Everybody has that special someone in their life that they can turn to, someone who is always there, and never puts a foot wrong, or puts themselves first. What Iím trying to say is, that everybody had a Josefina in their life at some point, so everybody can relate to what I felt.
School was never a happy time for me; forced to learn, forced to wear uniform, forced to abide by a set of rules that meant nothing to me. Mindless morons is the term I would use for what we were taught to be. Hypocritical teachers who told you not to smoke, then couldnít wait for the bell to go so they could light one up; waking up to the same routine, waking up to the same bus journey, waking up to the same rubbish, day in day out, being herded around like sheep with no-one daring to be different. We may as well have all been wearing grey and have our brains taken out so that we walked around like the zombies that we were. You could say that I had utter disdain for school, but there was one person who got me through, and that was Josefina. She always told me to ďCheer up RobĒ or, just the simplest of words in her accent could cheer me up, and she knew it! The word Ďcameraí would always make me laugh.
The day was always going to come, and of course, itís worse when you know itís going to happen. Nothing in this world is everlasting, and the black cloud of doom was hanging over me, all through the 'festiveí season. Which of course meant that I couldnít enjoy the best part of the year. It was like being given the death sentence!. Itís a clichť I know, but itís the only way I can think of to describe the feeling I had. All through the two years, I made the point of never giving her a hug, until January 31st 2004. I thought that the best leaving present would be to give her as many hugs as I could muster. I think I managed 30, but the last one lasted the longest, and is probably the longest I have ever cried for. I left her to leave for the airport with the simple words: Thank you and I will never forget youí, and with a tear in her eye, she left.
Of course I wasnít the only one affected by this. Like I said before, she touched so many other different people, but it affected me the most. She was my lifeline, the one who got me through the lifeless life of school (H.M.P Shene School). Losing her was like losing a lung, like losing an arm, like losing your life.
Immediately after she had left, I was made to go back to my lesson. Biology. Never has anything meant less to me than it did right at that moment. Learning about food chains at the best of times was tedious! But at this point in time, it was beyond tedious, it was beyond any word that I can think of, beyond any depth I can fathom. All I can remember from that lesson is going in, crying for about twenty minutes and walking out. I couldnít face the rest of the day, so I faked being ill, and off I went, straight home. I came home that day, a different person, I wasnít the same as I was before. I ran up to my room, tossed my bag to the floor, jumped into bed, and pulled the pillow over my head, to try and block out the world, and cure the numbness I felt in my heart, brain and legs. I just didnít know what to do with myself. I felt completely alone. Nobody to turn to. Nowhere to go. Nothing to live for.
I waited for my mum to take the dog for a walk before I moved from my bed. I slowly walked downstairs to the bathroom. Self harming had never crossed my mind before, but then again, I had never felt like I did that day before. I didnít really know what I was doing, but all I could see when I looked in a mirror was a broken man who had lost his lifeline. I stood with a razor blade in my hand for a couple of minutes, trying to gather together the strength to push down on my wrist. The strength never came, and itís just as well.
I didnít sleep at all that night and I couldnít face the next day at school, I stayed in bed until the late afternoon, trying to put all the pieces of my life back together. It isnít as if someone has died, she is still alive, and so am I, just.
Everyday from then on, I take her with me in my heart everywhere I go. She is the reason for every decision I make. I remember her good will, and her happy nature, and I try to let this be part of me. Humour gets me through most days, but underneath the clown, thereís a fragile lost boy crying, becoming even more fragile and lost as each day goes by.