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  • It had been a long day.
    I had been stock-making a charity edition Jackernut to raise money for young blind children to receive places at a special nursery. The big launch was Friday. It was Thursday.
    It's a local charity that asked me to be involved. I was honoured.
    It really makes a difference when you can see where the money is going.
    When you can see it helping.

    Early evening I went to the gym.
    This is the best time for when the beautiful boys are in.
    I found myself stretching next to a Gary Barlow look-a-like, but a younger, trimmer, more rugged version. No words were spoken.

    I then made a mad dash to Waitrose before it closed to bulk buy golden syrup. You can now buy a 900g tin rather than just the 464g tin, this will make jackernut making a whole lot easier.
    But carrying shopping home a lot heavier.

    Home was where it happened.
    I must be a truly horrible person.
    And it is really not nice to feel this way.
    I was met at my bedroom door by Mother and Stepdad.
    They want a piece of my world but I'm not ready to give it. I can't even give up a little bit.
    Words were shouted.

    "Do you not realise what you are doing to your mother?" he shouted. Both his hand on the Mother's shoulders; they were a front, against me.
    "Can't you see how much you are upsetting her?"
    Voices escalated, louder and louder and louder.
    Each response getting less coherent.
    Making less sense.
    She stood in silence, with the face that I was the worst daughter. How did she get this daughter?
    The perfect son was downstairs,
    and upstairs is this awful, emotionless, disappointing thing that I am supposed to call my daughter.
    I could see her thinking.


    When I was four years old I was in a swimming gala at school. My race was back stroke, but as the participants were not even half way to double figures, "stroke" is not literal. More like staying affloat while lying on your back and kicking.
    I wore bright orange arm bands.
    The whistle blew and lots of little legs made lots of splashes.
    I was at the front of the pack. I turned my head and saw my Mummy in the crowd.
    She was smiling, wide, looking right into my eyes, cheering "go on..." at me. She looked so happy.
    I can't remember whether I won or not, I must have got a sticker at least.
    But I will always remember faces.

    I slammed my bedroom door to shut them out.
    Then fell to the floor like a child.
    Stepdad kicked the door, hard, with his foot.
    "She's just a bloody, seflish cow."
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