So, about 7 or 8 years ago, I held one of my brothers girlfriends up against a wall by her throat. I am only 5ft tall, and I remember locking my elbow so that her weight didn’t buckle my arm.
I had been silently hating her with more venom with each encounter we had. She was dating my younger brother, and I resented how he had lost himself in her and become an accessory. On one evening, she was stupid enough to do it in front of me. She told him to go and change his clothes because they didn’t match her belt.
I was standing about eight meters away from her and she was too busy huffing and being dramatic to see me coming. I don’t remember what I said, but I remember grabbing her by the neck and walking her backwards into the wall as hard as I could – putting my fingers as deep into her neck as I was able, and I had her belt buckle with the other hand. Her eyes filled up, and she made a gurgle noise. I remember a bulging vein in her forehead and then I was yanked off of her by all three of my brothers. I am the older of the four of us, but by no means the biggest.
We are all ‘fighters’. The one who is less than a year younger than me is nick named ‘sniper’ in his boxing, because he smacks people and if you blink you miss it… and next thing there is a man down and you are still in the first minute of the first round. His now wife, I also tried to hurt when they were dating but I was lifted off my feet before I could get to her. (I am okay with her now… but it took years.) I wore black at his wedding… I was in mourning. I know I know, I am the mental sister that people keep their eyes on at family functions…
The the next youngest (the one who’s girlfriend I tried to strangle) is a lover, not a fighter – but when he does decide fight, he is the biggest of the lot and has a voice that can make the earth move beneath your feet.
The youngest, is an MMA fighter, and freakishly strong. He is the only one who will fight me because I black out and all he has to do is hold my head until the Kamkaze craziness passes and say my name a few times. And then proceeds to kick me in the same fucking spot on my thigh repeatedly and when I am so tired I can barely block or hold my gloves up, I am picked up and slammed. We think its very funny. Parents, however, do not. My dad used to be a pro boxer, but I think its the principle of a kid my brothers size slamming his sister that hard into a wall and then onto the ground. Regardless of how cathartic it is… or how much grinning is done afterwards. Red faced and sweaty, and sometimes a little more than injured.
Anyway. I digress. I have a temper (and have had since I can remember). I have lost count of how many times I have been carried out of places with a bouncer/ guard attached to each limb. Mostly in my drinking days. But I would be lying if I said it was confined to drunkenness. I was just more likely to actually hurt someone with a few whiskeys in me.
When I got out of rehab I was told to avoid the places that would trigger me. That’s easy. I am not allowed into them.
The point of this skip down memory lane is that the youngest brother is unmarried (21 years old now) and whenever he gets a new girlfriend, he warns them – about the potential of bodily harm. The last girl… wow… if I could get to her now. She ripped his heart open and shamelessly cheated and humiliated him. She is a dancer… she needs her toes. Just a thought.
So I was introduced to the latest squeeze a few days ago and she looked like a deer stuck in headlights. He still phoned me afterwards to ask if I approved. It got me thinking about how my brothers and some friends see me. For as long as I can remember I have been a straight talker. Most of my family are. But if I am honest about the timeline, all my brothers have had to experience me at my worst.
One was witness to me kicking the above mentioned man in the jaw, breaking it. They all got dragged to hospital to see me when I was either being sedated, or suicidal, or about to go to rehab. They all saw me drunk and foul mouthed and aggressive. They all knew I robbed my parents for money for drugs… and even though I have been clean and sober for over 5 years now – the impressions / stains you leave on those you love remain. 5 years ago the youngest brother was only 15. And I did a good job of self destruction for years before that. Even living in London, I caught a train to Birmingham where another brother was living, and tormented his friend and him… and I had no where else to go so he took me in. But he lived above a pub and I have been told since that I lectured a very big mean looking biker about there being no shame in men waxing their body hair and tending to things like mono-brows. ..
I have a good relationship with them all now – even when we are bellowing at each other. I am still the ‘crazy’ of the family and the one most likely to get arrested for something impulsive – like kicking a dent in a car – or scratching the words ‘You park like fucking WANKER’ into someone’s car.
Anyway. Random… but on my mind – because the prints of back then are still evident in how I am approached by even those that know me the best, today.