Some of the people I meet whilst doing my job, are not, perhaps the type you would want to meet, or the type you would want to have a coffee with. These people you probably wouldn't even sit next to on a train, maybe its the sixth sense you have to keep away from that "sort." They have strife ridden lives, like the woman you nearly sat next to on the bus this morning, or the anonymous lady with the bad odour that has just brushed past you in the shop, or maybe the angry young man that swore at nothing, just across the street from you...
There is a soul...
Its a time of year I often use for reflection, trying not to be selfish in a world that encourages you to be selfish. Indeed, my own immediate thoughts recently seem to be organising a trip to London to see the men and women that are my own children. But I needed to stop and reflect, still nagging in the back of my mind are the vulnerable people I've met doing my job. They are not remarkable people, their stories are not any more harrowing than the horrors you read in the papers, but they are however, no less unimportant either. I want to tell you about a few of these souls, I hope they and in fact all those that haven't got any family and friends to help them, get a break in life and a little bit of peace...
I recently took a young girl to her home that looked all of 12 yrs of age but was in fact 17 and now all too regularly self harms. She had her year old daughter taken from her by social services and adopted because of the abusive actions of a vicious boyfriend. She found out too late that abuse wasn't a normal part of life and even now that the abuser boyfriend is no longer around, she will never see her daughter again.
I also recall recently listening to a well spoken 73 year old woman who was unkempt, unwashed and unloved, she had lived in rural Ireland for 30 years with her husband who ousted her out onto the street with nothing. A 25 year old imported Thai replaced her. On the same night I met a woman that was made redundant recently and found a cleaning job that brought in just £10 too much a week on top of her meagre benefits and now has a criminal record for just trying to pay bills.
There is a soul in those eyes...
I also remember I spent a moment in time talking with a woman that saw her toddler walk out of a first floor window to his death on the pavement below. She is fed up of telling people why she only now has two children and wants to stop retelling and reliving that terrible moment. I told her maybe she should just tell them she has three children, always and forever three.
I've met women who have to prostitute themselves to keep their partner stocked with the latest computer games, beer money and the daily little wrap of crack he craves. I meet women that have such low esteem, they will do anything just to make their partner smile at them every now and again. I've met women that drink to forget the times they tried and failed to make a relationship work, because they felt it was their duty, not their partners, to indeed make it work.
There is a soul in those eyes you have just looked away from.
Some people, desperate people, I've met doing my job, will do anything to protect the family, they will steal, prostitute and beg to put food on the table. More often than not they forget they also need to look after themselves. Thankfully these days, most of us don't even have to think about doing such things, would you if you had to? I have equally met callous people that wouldn't care less for any of the above.
The song says only women bleed, sometimes it does seem that way doesn't it.
Here are some helpful numbers, I used Cruse more than once, they are wonderful caring people.
Samaritans helpline 08457 90 90 90
Cruse bereavement care 0844 4779400
Childline 0800 1111