Return of my Invisible Friend

Like a lot of children I had a friend that only I could see.   Although no one else could see her, it didn’t make her any less real and somehow validated our special friendship.  Her name was Reen, well that was how I pronounced it back then, and we played for hour upon hour in the wonderland inside our home.  Reen stayed close to me, she waited in my room while I slept, rocking gently on the rocker beside my bed and joined me at the table for meals, we spent hours at the bottom of the garden in our camp under the old coalbunker and I shared everything with her.  It was Reen that helped me wrap the hedgehog up warm and put him in the dressing up chest for the winter and Reen that taught me not to eat the slugs we found on the path.  When I was having my hair washed Reen would stand by the door watching and smiling as I screamed and wriggled away to the other end of the bath, I don’t recall her bathing but she was always shiny and bright.  When my daddy didn’t come home any more, she stayed close to me at night as I listened as mum cried in the distance. Whatever the weather was doing and however many layers I was wearing, Reen always wore the same dress, with little white flowers on a pale green background with a white collar and cardigan.

I can’t remember when she stopped coming or I stopped noticing, maybe about the same time my little sister could join me in play and moved into my room.  I feel bad now I think of it someone so important, just forgotten.  That’s it with imaginary friends they just leave your imagination one day and that’s it your on your own.  I remember mum telling me how one day we were running for the bus and she noticed my hand held out behind me, like I was dragging something along.  ‘Wait for Reen’ I fussed as we mounted the bus, a petrified look on my face, because I might leave my friend.  Mum told it as if she believed I really did have a friend, even with all the excitement of running for the bus and a fun day ahead, I had not forgotten Reen.  I didn’t remember this and although I had a slight dream like memory of a girl with a pretty dress and curly blond hair, Reen was cast to the back of my mind.  Mum often said she wished she had asked me more about my friend back then, but a busy mum bringing up two girls she let it go as I did myself years later with my own child.

I’m in my fifties now, I’m on the downward path now although still hopeful, and today I walked into the lounge to find Reen sitting on the sofa.  I saw her as I walked through the door just sitting waiting, like your family might, familiar, comfortable in the surroundings and all grown up.   I suppose that would make sense as she would have been growing with me, but she didn’t have the worry lines I see on my face each time I look in the mirror or any of the ravages of time this stressful world brings, she was truly beautiful.  I recognised her immediately, there wasn’t a moment when I didn’t know who she was.  The dress was gone but replaced by a blouse of the same pattern and her face was soft and creamy as I remembered, with big eyes and the gentle smile that was so deep and warm and hair the colour of summer. The shopping bags I was carrying hung heavy on the end of my arms as I stood and watched, holding my breath, not blinking in case she disappeared again.  She smiled some more and I felt safe, I wanted to cry and laugh at the same time, with a bubble growing in my throat, I couldn’t speak.  There I was like an idiot, standing in my coat, hair dripping into my eyes, the light still not switched on, with those sodden bags hanging from my arms.

Oh dear god, what a loser I must be to have my childhood friend return at my age.  It wasn’t that I was not happy to see her it’s just that it made me realise what a total bulls up I must have made of things since she had left, had she returned to repair me, put right all the wrongs and untangle all the lies.  She must know, yes, I looked into those eyes and knew instantly she had been with me all the time, I just hadn’t seen her until now.  You know when something is so real, there is not time for excuses, embarrassment, ego polishing or the like, well that was the moment I was caught in.  I bent to put my bags down on the floor, still dripping from the rain on to the waxed floorboards, knowing, as I did there would be a watermark later.  I walked slowly, yet within one held breath to the sofa and sat beside her.  I sat on her left, she was on my right and the feather sofa gave beneath me, this was not a dream.  I might have breathed but I’m not sure as in my mind a breath might have blown her away.  We sat there, comfortable like we had never been apart and a small bit of me realised we hadn’t parted, I had just stopped seeing her.

I want to be able to tell you how we spoke, how we caught up with the time and how I apologized for forgetting her but I can’t.  Because we haven’t spoken yet, she is still sitting there watching as I write this down with my cat Eris, snuggled up comfortably and purring softly beside her.


Nostalgia – DP photo challenge




So many things come to mind when I think of nostalgia.  I’m sentimental and slip back in time at the drop of a hat.  I find it easy to walk back into a scene, reminisce, look around and smell and feel what’s going on.  It’s interesting, as an adult I remember different things, must be my very vivid imagination or things stored in my mind, I didn’t acknowledge the first time around.  Maybe at an age I couldn’t comprehend, didn’t understand or just another false memory!

This is my first go at the Daily Prompt Photo Challenge, I don’t know if it should be a stand alone photo but I had to write a little poem to explain Nostalgia 🙂


Nostalgia sleeps upon my bed, he’s slept there many years

Witnessed all the heartbreak, the sadness and the tears

I’d say he’s probably forty five, maybe give a year or two

Those of you who are close to me, he knows your secrets too

My mother helped me make him, as I was seven or eight

I couldn’t do it all by myself, as I had got in such a state

We sewed him up with cotton thread, adding memories

Pink button eyes and matching lips, he was built to please

The velvet is still black as night, he blends in as I sleep

When we made him years ago, we made a guy to keep.


Soul Trauma

Are there traumatised souls beyond this world…

Much of my work in life has been with traumatised children, many of whom have been traumatised through their early life experiences. Born into unloving homes, with parents incapable of providing the love a child needs to thrive or abused at the hands of adults who should have cared for them.

Although early intervention, love and understanding can help in recovery for children who have suffered traumatic experiences, I believe in some way the soul carries these scars forward, certainly in this life and maybe beyond. If the purpose of the challenges on earth is to develop the soul so that it becomes enlightened, surely it can only do this through these memories and how they impact upon this life.  What understanding we gain from them and how we change.

They say that stress can bring on disease to the body and I have seen that enough to believe it possible, but what about the soul. Does the soul carry the trauma on with it or can it, when not connected to the body understand the reason for the challenges.  Are these challenges just for us, our own learning, or are they for the people around us and part of their lessons.

Mediums or channellers of spirits might say that they have a connection with a soul who passed and give evidence to loved ones of an illness that took the spirit over. If this is a memory for the family, providing evidence of life after death, it must remain in some way with the soul of the spirit that has passed.  I hope that after death illness disappears as it is only an illness of the body but I have a feeling the memories must surely remain.

My mother has always had a fear of not being able to breath, terrible claustrophobia.  Today my mother sits with an oxygen cylinder by her side assisting her breathing, her lung capacity is at a minimum and she has a lung disease that will eventually end her life.  That the fear became a reality is strange, is it a coincidence or something more meaningful, did she know all that time ago, was she in fact involved in the plan.  I know for sure that I have learnt from her pain and will continue to learn as I care for her.

The soul of the child is born into a family who cannot show love and therefore the child cannot learn love unless, provided with this experience. The child cannot show empathy, trust and understanding to others, as it has no knowledge of these things in this lifetime. But what about the soul of the child, the soul that has lived many lifetimes before this one, does it not retain some of those memories. Do the challenges and lessons of previous lives help us through the ones that follow.

What about our resilience, do we develop it here on earth or is this something we bring with us, learnt from the many challenges of the paths we have walked before. What is natural resilience anyway, I’m resilient, but I also know I have achieved this through my own experiences here. I am able to deal with some traumatic situations by removing myself from the pain of them. Or am I still kidding myself, will the pain slap me around the face one day.

The brain of the child does not receive the signals required from the parent in order to grow and development is delayed. What happens to the soul is it underdeveloped too, does it know it has been let down, is it raging inside that this life might negatively dictate its future journey.

Does the soul not recall love, does it not know there is love in the world. I know as a child, I had a friend, invisible to the adults around me but she loved me. I was born into a loving family and I did forget her, maybe when life on this world became the larger part of my experience and therefore had to be the truth. But I hope this shows we are born with an understanding of love and that we bring some of it with us.

I don’t think the soul is a blank canvas at birth I think it retains some of the wonder of worlds beyond and lives before. It just forgets as the new world unfolds around it. Hopefully a child will receive love, know that there is someone there for them unconditionally and grow up into a loving and understanding world.

I hope that the memories the soul carries help in this life, even if forgotten for now they provide a memory of what is possible and hope.

When people live traumatic lives, through loneliness, war, loss, mental health and illness how long does it take to recover and what happens to the soul. If each lifetime is a lesson, can one lifetime destroy the lessons learnt before.

When you hear stories about life beyond this world you hear of ills being cured, those that were blind seeing, those who could not walk walking. What about those that were not loved, I assume they, find love and are loved in return. I’m guessing they will have more time to recover before the next life………….

I found this piece of writing in my drafts, it was before my mother passed over.  I probably wrote it at a time I attempting to come to terms with grief, thinking about my own personal trauma and that of my mothers.  I haven’t answered all of the questions yet, I might not.

Walking Back To Happiness

I’ve not got a bad pair of legs even if I do say so myself.  The thing is, I paid for them, my mother walked my legs into me and scared poor cellulite from ever coming near.  From an early age, her love of walking was ours, like it or not there was no choice in the matter.

At the age of six I was holding onto the side of my sister’s pushchair while walking with mum to visit my grandmother seven miles away.  We walked from Morden, where we lived in South London to Balham and back again.  This was a regular occurrence and at the best of times without detours it was fourteen miles with short legs.  Can you imagine how many steps a six year old needs to take to walk that distance.  We didn’t own a car, mum couldn’t drive but the long and the short of it was my mum loved to walk.

I have a scar on my knee now from a fall on one of those walks, I don’t look at it today without thinking back. I can see the blood and the small stones stuck into my knee and I can still feel the kiss that made it all better.  In fact many of my childhood memories could be played out on the A24 otherwise known as the London Road.

I remember having dreams as a child of trying to walk or run from a monster and as much as I moved my legs I couldn’t go anywhere.  I wonder now if this might have been on the nights of our long walks, my legs still stepping one in front of the other under the bedclothes.

It wasn’t all-bad, we chatted ten to the dozen there and back, I knew my mum then like I do today because we talked to each other, we never walked in silence. I always think it strange when I see families walking along not speaking to each other, what a waste of precious time.

We played guessing games, told stories and sang songs on those walks, my sister joining in from the pushchair.  The sweet game was my favorite, it was a special treat when it happened as mum didn’t like us to have too many sweets.   We had to suck a sweet and see who could make it last the longest, last one with the sweet won.  My sister always won that game, I couldn’t work out how she managed as she talked as much as us.  I tried and tried to win, stuck the sweet under my tongue, held it between my teeth and kept my mouth open without swallowing but she was always to be queen of that game.

Mum used to say one day she would walk the length of England, I always hoped when she did eventually do this, she would wait until I was old enough to stay at home.  I think I probably walked the length of England a few times in my childhood, but hey I’ve got good legs.  What’s more I have the best relationship with my family, wonderful memories and a driving license!