I was hoping to be able to create chapters as I moved though the years of my life, and to give my blog some uniformity, however, just like both my life and my mind, being conditioned to follow the regular isn’t really me, unless of course it’s jail. You see, my thought pattern has decided to jump forward a few decades and the circumstances surrounding being sectioned in the early hours of my 33rd birthday are strong in my mind.
Southend Hospital at 1:00 am on the 22nd September 2002, I was sectioned by a psychiatrist for my own safety, apparently, after being out of it for a while and them doing whatever, when being asked how you are feeling, to answer “I have been put on this earth to eradicate all known diseases then once I am successful I will eradicate myself” is not the most conducive answer to give if one wanted to go home, especially to a psychiatrist.
2002, was a year I would do anything to forget, other than one event that took place that year, the birth of my son Reece on the 9th October. The rest nah forget it, no thanks, keep it, don’t need it as a memory at all thank you very much. It started off shit with My boys mum and I splitting up at the beginning of January of that year and not long after the split finding out she was pregnant with Reece. To be honest I think it was inevitable it was going to happen and I have to say all my fault. No excuse, I was working long hours and away a lot as a senior foreman for a big commercial removal company based in East London, about a mile down the road from where I lived. That wasn’t the problem though, the problem was the drink and the cocaine, along with crack, weed and pills, it was a crazy period, I didn’t even know who I was or who I was becoming. It got to the point on jobs that were a distance away, it wasn’t how many miles, it was how many cans or how many joints, I remember working for a similar company in South London, we had loaded up at the yard, then driven out and stopped for breakfast, someone asked the driver if he was coming, he cracked open a can of super, started to cut up a line of coke, turned round and said “What you want food for”, proper funny.
Back to the story in hand, we had a proper nasty guts spill argument, me and the boys mum. I ended up walking out and going to my mates in Romford. I was proper pissed off and angry. We got on the coke and had a few drinks, there was my mate, his missus and a mate of his missus.. What I should have done that night was telephone the boys mum and sort it. We had two kids, a mortgage on a beautiful flat in the docklands and I honestly did love her, she is the mother of my two sons so there will always be love for that, but no I went back with this other bird and somehow I found myself in no time living with her and her three daughters. I had been too proud to speak to my boy’s mum and now here I was in a case of having made my bed scenario, I was seeing my eldest Taylor and he was staying with me sometimes, things wasn’t great between his mum and me, which again is my fault because once I had chosen that path I had to save face and make it look like I was happy. Then the shit really hit the fan. It was summertime and we had a few people round, there was myself and Taylor, the new missus and her three kids, plus my mate and his missus with there two kids. We were also looking after someone elses little girl, her parents were at court sorting out their divorce. It had been a day of fun and drinking, then when this girl’s parents came back, you could see they had been arguing. Anyway, they joined in as best as they could, I was in the kitchen, like you do, talking to this guy Andy. At the time I was also doing a bit of unofficial debt collecting and I was talking to Andy about it as he seemed to have a bit about him. Anyway a couple of hours have passed, Andy disappears for a bit, next thing I got me mate telling me that Andy’s upstairs upsetting all the kids. Turns out he was going and couldn’t find his car keys, he started threatening the kids, including my Taylor, I was not happy but still tried to get it sorted Andy came back downstairs, he’d had a few as well, so I told him to stop playing up and get a cab, we can look for his keys when he’s gone. He copped a proper attitude, opened another beer and said “I ain’t going nowhere cunt, until I get my keys”. I must have punched him twenty times as I sat on top of him, I went apoplectic, shocked myself. I got up and grabbed him up, then my mate, for stupid reasons which will become apparent, chased him down the road.
About ten minutes later there was a knock at the door, it was our neighbour, Andy’s car was slightly over his drive and could we move it, we still hadn’t found the keys, so I checked the door and it was open, I was just about to lean in and take of the hand brake, with my neighbour ready to push, next thing I’ve heard is “YOU, GET UP AGAINST THE CAR”, before I had a chance to move there was a hand on me, my first thought was it was mates of Andy’s so I just started fighting whoever was in front of me, it wasn’t until I was on the floor with a few of them on top of me that I realised it was old bill, not once had they said they were police, a fact my neighbour made clear in his statement. I kid you not I was charged with GBH Sec18 and six ABH’s against the police, two weeks after my arrest, my mate was charged with GBH Sec18 under joint enterprise, all because he chased him.
At the trial at Snaresbrook Crown Court, the prosecution put forward their case as usual, during which the judge asked “I can understand why Mr.Breakspear has been charged with a section 18 but considering it carries a maximum of a life sentence I cannot see why Mr.S has been charged with the same or at all, with this my mate dropped, he was white and his missus was crying, I called my barrister over and said it’s time to do a plea bargain, there was a bit of tooing and froing but the only way I would take any deal was if my mate walked, my barrister also felt that the judge was sympathetic towards me it what happened. In the end I pleaded guilty to a GBH Sec20 and three common assaults against the police. The compensation and fines came to £750 and by christ the judge was on my side, for the Section 20 he gave me 150 hours community service and for the common assaults he gave me 50 hours consecutive, all in all 300 hours community service. The worry and stress in the build up to that was intense, and do you know what I never heard from my mate again after that day, you’re welcome. In his sentencing the judge had said he felt that I was justified somewhat in my actions and it was apparent that the police never introduced themselves as such, however blah, blah, blah. This was August, and in the meantime we had moved from Collier Row to Canvey Island.
For some reason my looming birthday was becoming a hindrance, what’s so special about a 33rd but to me is was becoming a milestone to far. The day before my birthday, I hit the drink real hard, plus I had some coke on me, the day is a blur. Apparently I had left a suicide note on the kitchen side, I was picked up crashed out outside some restaurant, I only remember, like yesterday that conversation with the psychiatrist and asking what the time was, my next memory was waking up in the back of an Ambulance it was half two in the morning and they were transferring me to Runwell Hospital, we pulled into this drive that went on forever, and though the site is gone now I believe some of the buildings back then were boarded up, it was like driving into a horror movie.
I was taken to a little dormitory where there was about ten beds with lockers separated by a thick curtain either side, I was asleep again as soon as my head hit the pillow. When I woke up OMG, one flew over the cuckoo’s nest came straight to mind, what the fuck is this place. I swear to you I went to the main area and an old woman with her nightie tucked into soiled knickers was shouting at a radiator, I was like, am I still dreaming. Because of the time of my arrival I wasn’t booked in properly so had to sit in an office with the duty psychiatrist, it was her that said to me “You’re not very well, are you?”. “You’re the fucking psychiatrist love so psych”. Excuse the pun but you really would have to be mad to want to go to one of these places, and I know of a few that have tried to get out of a prison term by playing the game but I’d take prison any day. Having said that some landings are no different to a psychiatric hospital, apart from the fact staff are trained in hospitals to deal with it, prison officers are not.