I’m not sure what I imagined my life would be like as a young adult. Maybe the problem was that I didn’t imagine it at all.
From around the age of four until the age of seven, I woke every night between the hours of twelve and four scared for my life. Recurring lucid nightmares haunted me every single night. They all started the same, I would wake safe in my bed. I would climb out of the bed and open my bedroom door that had been left slightly ajar. I would cross the landing, baring left and ascend down the stairs. When I reached the last step I would bare left again towards the kitchen where death awaited me in male form. I never remembered how or why I died but he would lunge towards me and everything went black immediately. There were two alternate endings. In one I would reach the kitchen safely but I wouldn’t enter, instead I would pull the handle on the door to the parlor at the front of the house where in daylight waking hours I would dance to Britney Spears. However, there was no bubblegum pop within the dreams only darkness and death awaiting me behind the couch pushed up against the left wall, again in male form. In the final option, death waited for me in the toilet at the top of the stairs which I would ascend to after surviving the parlor. Death #1 has claws. Death #2 had matted hair. Death #3 had fangs. They all killed the same. Upon awaking damp and alone, heart-racing, I would fly out of the bed, across the landing, into my parent’s bedroom on the right and straight into their bed – preferably between them despite their protests. Not long after 9/11 they had had enough and they dealt with this problem the only way two working-class parents from Speke could – they told the teacher. I was publically shamed, not for the first time, in front of the entire class. “Michael Ashton is seven years old and he still sleeps in his parents’ bed every single night,” Miss Atkinson announced, straight after the morning register which as I recall – I was the first name on. The public shaming didn’t work as instructed, the nightmares didn’t stop so neither could I.
My grandmother was from a large family, she had several brothers and sisters, a father who ran a coal factory and a mother who died young due to a brain injury sustained from regular beatings from her husband. My nan, Angela – an Angel on Earth, not yet a teenager was left with the responsibility of raising all the half-orphaned children. She wanted to be an artist but when your mum dies and you dad has to sell the factory this privilege is no longer allowed – especially when you apply to an art school associated with John Lennon with the cheapest art utensils that money can buy. Instead she became a biological other despite fulfilling the role as one for many years before. She married a man called John and gave birth to four girls and two boys – Julie, Collette, Diane, Michael, Gaynor & Paul. Though they all shared traits of Angela within her family tree, in my humble and psychological opinion her first born Julie was the one who came from the same branch. Julie went onto become Julie Brown née Mullen, then as far as I’m aware returned back to Mullen – but that’s another story and not mine to tell. Julie also went on to become seven-year-old Michael Ashton’s favourite person in the world. Julie managed to get out of Speke before Michael was born. She lived briefly in Mossley Hill before taking a much further step to Bournemouth whilst Michael was still very young. When Michael was twenty-three, during the adverts of The Real Marigold Hotel (starring the legendary Miriam Margoyles) Julie recounted a story of how when Michael was a baby he would come and stay with her and her husband Joe at their home in Mossley Hill and sleep between them in the bed. Julie never bore any children of her own and she confessed that when Michael was sleeping between her and her husband she would wish that he was hers. I’m pretty sure that baby Michael wished that too. However, one morning Michael’s mother arrived and was she not impressed that he had been allowed to sleep in the bed so she snatched him away from between the sheets and he was never allowed to sleep their again.
After Julie moved away to Bournemouth she would still visit Liverpool as often as she could and this was always Michael’s favourite time of the year. It always felt like Christmas and not just because she always brought presents. The greatest gift Julie ever gave Michael was time and words. Upon hearing that the public shaming had obviously not worked she took Michael on a walk to the shops. Along the way, between other life lessons such as why Michael should never ever litter, she taught Michael the most valuable one of all – how to get rid of the nightmares. She told him that what he needed to do was take these scary intrusive thoughts of death by men and put them in a box – not a real physical box – a pretend box for pretend thoughts. Michael was to pack the box tight and once it was full of the demons of the night he was to put on the lid, seal it and throw it away. Though hard to understand, Michael listened carefully and when alone in his room later that day before the sun set in the sky he envisioned the box. It was a blue box and he filled it with all the memories of the countless times that males 1, 2 and 3 had murdered him. He put on the lid and he threw it away – right out of the window towards the pub across the road. Though there was no immediate sensation or change, that night when he climbed into bed, for the first time in as long he could remember he didn’t feel as if there were any monsters under the bed laughing, listening and waiting for him to fall asleep. When Michael slept that night, believe it or not – it worked. He still woke up in the early hours but he wasn’t scared anymore – until he saw a real, physical box in the middle of his room on the floor. Terrified that the box had materialized and flown back in threw the open window he jumped out of bed and ran towards it ready to destroy it. The box was real just as every sentence on these pages (D I S C L A I M E R – as far I am aware and as good I recall) are but it wasn’t the box full of terrors – it was a box full of cardboard Pikachu’s that had been left there by Julie. It really did work – the nightmares stopped, other than on the rarest of occasions.
I’m still not sure what I imagined my life would be like as a young adult. Maybe the problem really wasthat I didn’t imagine it at all. I still don’t mean that in a grim death kind of way, though part of me is still convinced that I will die young. I’m still not cool or accomplished enough for the twenty-seven club, so if I do die young it will probably be the day before my twenty-seventh birthday or the day after my twenty-eight.
IYA, it’s Ashy. Good morning Sluts and SURPRISE Bitches… I bet you thought you’d read the last of me. Do you know what day it is today, Coffee Donkeys? Fuck, it’s a Wednesday. But it’s not just any Wednesday, it’s Wednesday 1st October. Do you know what that means? That it’s almost Haloween? No (L). That it’s almost Chaneloween? Um… duh. But that’s not the point. It is almost time for Scorpio Season. It’s almost also the ever of my twenty-seventh birthday. GASP! I’mma let Michael finish but Ashy is planning the greatest pop record of all time. XOXO – You know you loathe me.
Michael Raymond Ashton was born in Font Cocktail bar née Oxford Street Hospital. His biological parents were Diane Rose Ashton née Mullen and Raymond Ashton. He had bad eczema, ginger hair and really dark eyes. In the verbatim words of his other – he was the ugliest baby she had ever seen and to his mother’s credit in almost all of the photographs of baby Michael his face is expressing a scowl that apparently not even a mother could love. Michael was not a happy baby. Michael was awkward. Michael was uncomfortable. Michael was not Michael. The world loathed him and the feeling… was mutual. The name Michael was given to him last minute after a very brief life as Justin Raymond Ashton, named after the doctor who delivered him and who was deemed quite attractive by his grandmother Angela, who was present at his birth. Diane had a brother called Michael and Raymond, who was also a child of half-a-dozen, did too so I guess it was… easy? Convenient? Original? Methinks not. But Michael was because as far as he was aware he was the first baby in the family to be born into the wrong body. As Michael began to grow the differences between him and his older brother Callum became significant. Michael did not want to play football. Michael didn’t want to wear football kits because the badge hurt his nipple. Michael didn’t want to play with the boys. Michael did not want to urinate standing up. Michael didn’t want to use a urinal at all actually. Michael did not want to share baths with his brother. Michael did not want to change out of his shorts into his swimming trunks at the beach like his older brother Callum and his younger cousin Craig did. Michael did not want to be naked in the presence of absolutely anyone thank you very much – mother and father included. Michael did not want to marry Britney Spears when he grew up.
What Michael really wanted was to run down his nan Linda’s front path with his cousin Leah’s baby doll in a pram. Michael wanted to play Polly-Pocket on the kitchen floor. Michael wanted a Baby Born for Christmas. Michael wanted to buy Rugrats bobbles from The Heritage Market. Michael wanted a fucking Barbie. Michael wanted to play house with the girls and he wanted to be the mum but he would settle for being the dog. Michael wanted to wrap his towel around his chest not his waist and another one around his skin-headed-hair too please. Michael wanted to pee in the cubicles at school but was too scared to because he once saw two brothers looking under them once so he just held his bladder until the toilets were empty during class time or until he got home or until he wet himself on the living room floor. Michael wanted to join a drama club or a dance group not rugby fucking union. Michael wanted to wear his mummy’s floral perfume and her dark toned lipsticks after her and dad had gone out for dinner and Auntie Julie was in charge. Michael wanted to wake up early the next day and go downstairs to the hall and walk around in his mum’s discarded heels whilst his parents and brother were still sleeping upstairs. Michael wanted to find the weird fake boobies that Auntie Julie bought mummy as a joke once that were hidden at the bottom of her wardrobe along with some paperwork from when she worked in Michael’s nursey. Michael wanted to BECOME Britney Fucking Spears when he grew up, he did not want to be WITH her. Michael was not Michael. But he wasn’t Michaela either because despite being raise in Speke, Michael was not a chav.
At eleven, Michael was renamed by his dear Kitty Girl, Carlos, who was the son of one of Michael’s teachers, that got to come to Michael’s school when his own school had inset days. Carlos decided that the name Michael did not suit Michael at all and he decided that he was going to call him Ashy. Ashy like full of ash, like an ashtray. Ashy pronounced a-she, duhhhh! And just like that, Michael was renamed – standing outside the doors to the school’s hall where the assemblies took place and the hymns were sing, sang, sung. On the playground that led to a field straight ahead, a grassy area to the right that was reserved for the boys to play football and a nature trail to the left where he loved to play with the girls. On the playgrounds of the Roman Catholic school that taught Michael that God was watching his every move and knew his every though and therefore knew Michael’s dirty little secret that he wasn’t in fact Michael after all. He was Ashy. And Ashy, as the name sounds out was in fact a she not a he and would grow up to be a woman not just an author as planned. And boy, was God going to be mad when she arrived at the pearly gates with a ‘girlish’ name and a penis. Ashy was very concerned about this future moment and it often kept her awake at night just as the nightmares had before. But standing on that playground eleven-year-old Ashy felt reborn and just like they had in the bad dreams before, eleven-year-old Michael began to die.
I’m seriously still not sure what I imagined my life would be like as a young adult. Maybe the problem really actually wasthat I didn’t imagine it at all because I didn’t think what I imagined could every be a reality. & I still don’t mean that in a grim death kind of way, though a small part of me is really still convinced that I will die young. I’m a little bit cooler and a little bit more accomplished but still not enough for the twenty-seven club, so if I do die young it will probably won’t be the day before my twenty-seventh birthday but I hope to God it’s not the day after my twenty-eight. Death doesn’t scare me at all anymore, I’m a firm believer in reincarnation.
Iya, it’s Ashy… again. Surprise Bitches, I told ya’ll you hadn’t seen the last of me. By now you should know, I like to talk – particularly about myself and my favourite stories to tell are mostly from my teenage years. However, its 03:22 in the morning and if this bitch don’t rise early enough in the morning then there’s going to be a lot of pissed of Tories flooding my work e-mails so let’s just do a whistle stop tour of my Teenage Dream shall we…
Grammar school dropout. Beauty school dropout. Community College starlet. Cherry Lambrini that also served as a lip tint. Dream Matte Mousse that was 50 shades darker than my natural skin tone. Bronzer as setting powder but only up to my eyebrows so as not to stain my bleach blonde hair as it did my school shirts. Getting sent to wash the makeup of my face in the boys’ toilets by the highly suspected lesbian math’s teacher and LOVING it. Blonde hair. Brown hair. Mystic Violet hair stolen from Home and Bargain. Pink Hair. Blue Hair. Pierced Ear. Social Services. Skipping meals. Skipping school. Going to Toni & Guy instead of Physics. Going to therapy instead of Physics. The Tippex Incident. Narrowly avoiding getting groomed by a confirmed pedophile prefect. The Quad. Accidentally getting put on the basketball team. Dramatically quitting the basketball team and not getting to go to America. Going skiing on the Alps after my parents sold some shares they’d bought when I was born and accidentally putting the child of two Tories that I accidentally really liked because I didn’t know any better in a neckbrace in a tobogganing accident. Homophobic PE teachers. The homophobic Spanish teacher though not confirmed was DEFINITELY a nonce, particularly for the school’s Thoroughly Modern Millie. The Spanish Teacher who was confirmed to be a nonce with child porn on his laptop. The PE teacher who was confirmed to be a nonce, was splashed all over the Echo and got away with it anyway. Injustice. Tories fucking everywhere. Poor little rich boys. Poor little rich girls. Being actually FUCKING POOR. The Head of discipline telling me that he knew things were difficult at home but I didn’t help myself because of the way that I dressed and dyed my hair and wore bracelets that I’d shoplifted from Topshop – hehehehe. Having the headmistress watch me eat a sandwich that my favorite History teach bought me in her office whilst we waited for social services to arrive. The Deputy Headteacher who had the first legal civil partnership in the UK being my legal guardian for a good half an hour and arranging for the washing machine to be removed from his car if he needed to take me home. Depression. Anxiety. Sleeping too much. Not sleeping at all. Getting politely asked to leave ‘through the diary room door’ because I wasn’t welcome anymore. Accidentally falling in love with a boy who could never love me back but told me that had I been a girl we would have been together. Kissing him anyway. Kissing girls. Kissing boys. Kissing everyone. Sleeping next to anyone who would have me. Sleeping in public toilets. Not actually sleeping with anyone till I was twenty-two but having my first sexual experience with the school’s most notorious rapist who wasn’t actually trying to rape me but trying to assault my soul sister who was passed out next to me in the bed whilst I was also passing out but doing the only thing that I thought could help – wanking one for the team. For the girls. Hating girls who tried to publically shame or hurt my girls but always taking it too far. Hating people who smoked cos it killed people and made my family even poorer than we already were. Not speaking to my friends for two weeks if they did smoke. Accidentally taking up smoking because the coolest boy in the year above took me in for the night and he just looked so fucking cool doing it. Britney fucking Spears. t.A.T.u. t.A.T.u or I’ll bomb. Carlos Walker-Ravena. Robyn Freaking Tisdale. IYA MY NAMES ABI AND THIS IS PEGGY – YES THAT IS HER REAL NAME!!!! Charlotte Freaking Quinn. THE GOTHS. Holly Star Score. Ssej. Jerry & Mashy. Pom Pom. Malham. CHUCK! Holly Star Score not being allowed a birthday party unless Carlos Walker-Ravena went out with her. Brogan lending me Confessions of an Heiress and never ever giving it back. The Simple Life. GIMME MORE. Robyn Rihanna Fenty. Hiding in the music room store cupboard. LOUIIIIIIISE GOODWIN ILY!!!!!!!!! MSN. MYSPACE. FACEBOOK. BBM. Webcamming everyone. WEBCAMMING ROSIE LANE WHILST SHE WAS WRAPPED IN A BLANKET EATING CRISPS LOOKING UNAMUSED WHILST A CLOCK TICKED IN THE BACKGROUND Team Brooke. Taking time off school cos Marissa Cooper died. Taking time of school because my dad died but they shocked him back to life and I was sat at home watching Buffy and making a Friends board game for DT anyway. TWILIGHT FEVER 5EVER. KISSING ABI THEN TELLING JENNY HOLLIS SHE LOOKED LIKE JESSICA ALBA AND THAT SHE COULD SIT WITH US 5EVER Accidentally on purpose kissing Jenny Hollis’ boyfriend who she stole from Jessica Jung anyway who Carlos renamed ICE QUEEN and a POMPOUS BITCH and me taking it too far but only cos I was JEALOUS. RACHEL FUCKING HAYES a.k.a the MOMMA a.k.a don’t be sad be H A P P Y. Carlos squishing a chip on Rachel Hayes’ fod at Leeds. LEEDS 2009 AND 2010. BOWDEN YOURE PISSING ON MY FUCKING FACE!!!! These monster much are proper tasty. JESSICA WHY DO YOU WANT TO TAKE DRUGS??? DO YOU WANT TO DIE? Mum is going to kill you! / SOMEBODYS STOLEN MY BUM BAG! Running to Crystal Castles and Chez laughing over her shoulder and we didn’t want to go home anymore. The bad pill that made me think I was on fire and hallucinating clowns coming out of digital cameras. The Picket. Barfly. WAXXXX. Ecstasy. Ecstasy making me feel so much joy that I’ve never felt the same since for better or for worse. ASHY & JO – DJ SAMMY HEAVEN. Pippa. Bianca. Rafe Fucking Juan. Theodore Matthew Jackson. Neil Walker. Abi Ward is not the type of girl u can neck & fuck off – wait I AM that girl!!! My names Elise and I love DANCING. Running away to the Valley into the loving arms of CAITLIN FREAKING CAMPBELL & NEVER LETTING GO running away to community college with Caitlin Campbell and getting sent home on the first day for having a liquid lunch in baa bar. MY MOLLY COOPER thermometers broken. Rachael freaking Townsend. THE LARAMIE PROJECT – RIP MATTHEW SHEPHARD my dad coming to see the play and crying. Tim Lynskey. Bexy Jones. Sophie Taylor. ELLIE FREAKING WALLACE. Running away from the most horrendous house party of all time with Caitlin Campbell. Caitlin Campbell wearing heels for the firt time. Wearing Caitlin Campbell’s heels for the first time in Tesco and getting gaybashed BY A LESBIAN!!! You’ll always find Rosie Lane asleep in the toilet at parties. Treating everyday like it was fancy dress. Going to every single party ever with no invitation ever. Breaking my face at OSQAs cos I was sad!!! Gladys. The Mysterious case and Disappearance of Emily Whittaker. SIENNA BENNA BOO. 5$ shakes. Finding my long lost mother ZOE DELANEY in a hopeless place. LILLIE-MAE & AUNTY ASHY.
04:20 tbc – im calling it 4 2nyt girls sorry lol I need a ciggie and a 5 hour siesta