Moving to the new yard co-incided with my school summer holidays and as I had nothing better to do, I was asked by Hilary, the manager of the yard, if I wanted to do some casual work for her, in return for board and hay for my horse, which I agreed to. (I have discussed this is a previous post but now will go into more detail).
I became very close to the manager, Hilary, and began to think of her as a mother figure. (If you read all my blog you will notice there is a theme here, perhaps due to the lack of maternal instinct I actively seek out mother figures, I don’t know, I don’t understand). But regardless, I began to love her as a mother and she treated me like a daughter, I presume because of her own daughter who treated her like dirt, it was a breath of fresh air to have such a needy, loving person to care for?
I soon became an integral part of the yard, working hard and making friends. During this time, Buddy was still lame, and undergoing investigation for his lameness as the navicular was yet to be diagnosed.
The owner of the yard, who lived just outside, and employed Hilary to manage it, was a boxer and ran a boxing gym next to the yard. He had a man, Tim, who I originally thought was his son, but wasn’t – perhaps someone who worked in the gym. Either way, Tim was back from university for the summer and we started spending time together. He took he on a few dates, before letting slip that he actually did have a girlfriend, who was away currently competing in the USA. Of course, I doubt anything would have happened, the anxiety I suffered simply going on a date with him was enough, I could barely imagine anything else happening. I do not know why I felt like this – I had never been assaulted or attacked by a man, but I was extremely anxious over any contact, even going on dates normally caused me to regress into a jibbering wreck.
One girl at the yard, Becky, was a self harmer, worse than I had ever seen before (to be fair, I had not seen many self harmers at all by this point). Now I have now established there are two reasons why she triggered me; first of all, there was another woman on the yard called Cheryl was was the ‘earth mother’ type, several times I had been Becky and Cheryl lock themselves in the tea room for Cheryl to undress and redress Beckys arm – and perhaps I longed for that sort of care to be taken of me; and secondly as you all know, seeing someone elses self harm triggers you into doing it yourself. And so, I did, worse than I ever had before. Sometimes with glass, other times with a razor, but deep enough to create the first real scarring that has stayed with me. I never even thought about going to hospital to get it stitched, but I did thoroughly enjoy the attention I got from Cheryl when she took me to the doctors to get it looked at, when she locked herself and me in the tea room so undress and redress it. Subconciously I guess I still was reaching out for attention, if only I had realised it, or if someone else had stepped in and made me search for it in a positive way.
So one night, Hilary had asked me to look after her two dogs, Percy and Foley, at my house, which I did.
In the morning, I arrived at the yard, fully expecting to go on a ride out with two girls who kept their horses at the yard. The first thing I remember happening on that day, was a phonecall from the vet, telling me that they had reached a diagnosis for Buddy, that he had navicular, and I would have to make the decision as to whether to put him to sleep or not.
I then had a second phonecall from the police. It was during this time (I have mentioned this is a separate post) that all the problems were happening with the bus driver – and basically the phone call was to say that although he had previously been arrested, there was insufficient evidence to charge him and he was going be released.
If that wasn’t enough for my disordered 17 year old brain to cope with, I was then approached by the owner of the yard, who wasn’t actually a very nice person at the best of times, and informed that I had to leave the premises. When I asked why, he informed me that I had been telling everyone that Tim had raped me, and it was damaging his reputation. Now, this was a complete shock to me, as I had said nothing that could ever even be construed as me saying that. I was completely baffled. The owner then went on to say that he had a call from Tom (as in Tom and Sally) and that he had told me I was trouble at the old yard, I was promiscuous, I would wear strappy tops to tease him, that one day he went into his house and found me naked in his bed begging me to have sex with him….
Now, this is ridiculous. If you ever met Tom, you would see why. He is a sixety someting, fat, wheezing, farting old man with sty’s in both eyes. Nothing would have repulsed me more that touching him, let alone sleeping with him. It was completely ridiculous, but I was so overwhelmed with all that had been said to me. The owner told me I better leave because the police were on the way. I ran out of the yard, past all the people who I believed had been my ‘friends’ all summer but who now refused to make eye contact with me, or come to my aid, and got to my moped to find the tyres cut and my helmet nowhere to be seen. I found it, a few minutes later, on to the top of a pitchfork, on top of the 20 foot high muck heap. What might have been a funny joke to Tim (or even malicious), was the final straw that broke the camels back to me.
I drove the 20 minute journey or the dangerous moped with slashed tyres to Hilarys house, where I knew a hug would be waiting for me. She wasn’t at the yard as she was waiting in for a repairman for her washing machine.
When I got there and knocked on the door, she opened it with a face like thunder. Before I could get a word in edgeways, she asked me why I had lied, why I had let everyone down. It finally sunk in. They had won and I had nothing. Hilary told me I should do the right thing and hand myself into the police, so I drove to the police station, numb.
They told me that if Tim or the owner had reported I had been saying I had been raped, I would have been the first person they would have contacted, to make sure I was ok. It was all lies.
Numb, and empty, I drove home. In one day, I had lost my ‘mother’, my horse, my friends, my life at the time. I got home, took pills and hoped to die – my first overdose.
To be continued.
Take Care. x