Get Over It

There are often times in our lives that we look back at the day, week, year we’ve had and truly wonder how we’ve survived.


2016 had been one of those years. Whilst there have been many amazing experiences, this year has been marred with great sadness. The break up of my relationship, the unexpected death of a friend, and with those and other feelings the return of the space that exhausts me completely. Dealing with what I haven’t been able to identify for months now but knew deep down was going to resurface at some point – a depression that wasn’t just going to go away through my attempts to bury it or manage it unsatisfactorily.


So here I am now. Being truthful with myself about where I stand and allowing myself to experience, finally, the sadness, the anger, the numbness. And with that knowing there are certain people who are holding on. Those that I have entrusted completely with myself, who I am eternally grateful for. Who see me at my darkest and still manage to keep the light shining for me.

It’s tough. It’s hard. But then…..

So here’s to healing. Here’s to being kind. And here’s to returning to the woman I know I can be. Wobbles will happen but I’ll get there. One day at a time. And if in doubt, Santa Claus. 😉

Ladylove,
Jaqueline xxx

Title: “Get Over It” OK GO (not to get over this, it’s not that easy. But just a reminder that we do all get over these bumps in the road.)

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#badassbitchfromhell

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It’s been two days since an entitled fucktard thought he had the right to sexually assault me. Yes. Sexually assault. He may have only tried and partially succeeded to kiss me, but fuck that shit, it’s still sexual assault. I did not consent to it, nor did I want it to happen.

It came to my attention that something similar had recently happened to Kate Nash, the badass woman who happens to write, play and sing pretty fucking awesome songs, in her own home. A stranger cornered her and proceeded to grope her. I cannot imagine how it feels to have a violation like this happen in your own home but millions of women have had this exact experience, and worse.

Whilst I’m on the scale of bad to worse here, all actions that are not consented to by one or either party are assault – physical, sexual or otherwise, and each action can have just as much of an impact as any other, regardless of their “severity”. It’s taken me by surprise that I have felt as much anxiety and sadness and fear as I have because of this. Explaining the situation to my uni friends today of why I have been a bit off and distracted made my heart rate increase, made me feel like I could cry at any moment and made me doubt that my experience was serious enough to warrant my reaction, or that others would think it trivial and brush it off. (They didn’t, which is why my friends are fucking awesome.)

But the most depressing and infuriating thing about this process is that I have spoken out and in doing so have had several female friends talk about their experiences. When a guy groped them, or kissed them, or rubbed against them when they did not want it to happen. And despite all of them being strong, badass bitches from hell, they have also not reported it or felt like they could fight back in the same way I was able to. As women, we have seemingly gotten into the habit of minimising our experiences due to the fact that for so long we have not been listened to, not been told we can fight these men, not been shown by our legal system that our complaints will be taken seriously (just look at the conviction numbers for rape and assault against women and you’ll be laughing).

Kate Nash has done exactly what I did. SPEAK. We have become part of a small minority of women who actually does. My job, as a woman, as a victim, as a survivor, as a badass bitch from hell, is to speak. To share. To empower. To help. To do something that educates the next generation. Not just of boys and men, but of girls and women. I have no idea where to start but this is my fight. This is your fight. THIS IS OUR FIGHT.

Ladylove,
Jaqueline xxx

Title: Kate Nash quote, innit? And my image to other attackers and to show that I’m not your “stereotypical” victim.

Also, if anyone has experienced sexual assault or sexual harassment, there are so many great resources to go to for support, advice and campaigns for specific public services like the Tube or local areas. Please see below for information.

United Nations – What Is Sexual Harassment?

Citizens Advice – Sexual Harassment

Citizens Advice – Sexual Assault and Rape

London, UK: To report sexual harrassment on public transport, text 61016 and give details of what, where and when.

Walthamstow, London, UK –

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Rape Crisis

Victim Support – Rape & Sexual Assault

NO.

Edit: The shop owner/manager contacted me and apologised profusely, as has the staff member who did not realise anything was happening. They are going over their policies with me in person next week and hopefully we can make this a situation for change and education.

I’m writing this today and the title is not named after a song. Nor is it ironic or humorous.

About two hours ago, a guy decided that I was just his type and so because of that, he made his way into a shop, tapped me on the shoulder and as I turned around tried to kiss me.

Yes, dear reader. How thoughtful of him. When this stranger tapped me on the shoulder, I second guessed that it could be someone I know and went to greet them as I normally would with a quick hug. On realising this was not the case and in fact that this guy was in the process of sexually harassing/assaulting me, I proceeded to grab his jacket and not let go whilst swearing and generally ripping him a new asshole. I basically went FULL FEMINIST WARRIOR WOMAN on him. I then took him out of the shop and carried on with my words of education and warning (I said “fuck” and variants of that word a lot). He apologised, tried to make friends with me (dude, SRSLY?!?) and went on his way whilst I went back into the shop to finish my purchase.

Now, you would think that’s where this story ends but in fact it doesn’t. At no point in this did the male shop staff intervene. At no point did the male shop staff ask if I was alright afterwards. Actually, no one intervened. A female customer did ask me afterwards what had just happened and if I was okay though. But this is the 21st Century, guys and gals. In a world that still objectifies women, still makes people think that if they like something or someone they can just go out and grab it (literally), still turns a blind eye to something happening whilst it is ACTUALLY HAPPENING.

At this point, I would like to say that I am fucking glad this happened to me. Not because I wanted it to (HELL TO THE FUCK NO!), but because at least I had the fucking attitude and response mechanism to fight back and was able to tell that I was in a space that I could do so despite the fact no-one else apparently responded to it or backed me up. But imagine if I had been unable to fight back. If I had been somewhere else. If I hadn’t had past experience of this (disclaimer: not the first time!!). I could have frozen. I could have been physically violated. It could have been worse. Now please don’t read this as me saying it was nothing. It was sexual assault plain and simple. However, I felt that the actions, consequences and the subsequent apology from the attacker were enough for me to carry on with my day.

The shop? I have emailed them about the incident and waiting to hear back about their policy and hopefully with an apology. Just because I was apparently dealing with the situation DOES NOT MEAN I DON’T NEED OR WANT HELP OR BACK-UP. We’ll see where things go from their reply.

How am I? I’m fine. I am angry. I am a bit perturbed. But mostly I am just thankful.

And women, lesbians, gays, queers, men, trans* people, EVERYONE. Please keep safe. Pass this on. And keep fighting and doing what you do everyday. Because the fucktards won’t win. And maybe, just maybe, we might begin to live in a world where people realise they can’t do something like this so stop doing it all together. Maybe.

Ladylove,
Jaqueline xxx

Tantric Prayer

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I’ve reached thirty. And I seem to have found this place in my life that enjoys listening to Tibetan monk chanting, wearing feminist slogans, is interested in tarot and crystals (again) and has a family of succulents and cacti amongst feminist/radical art that celebrates women and the features of women.

Amongst all of this, I am studying and moving forward constantly whilst trying to retain parts of my old life that I don’t want to let go of or might not be quite ready to let go of yet. I’m finding myself making sure I’m making the right decision, before just leaping into things head first. Is this thirty? Are these the years of thoughtful decision making? Right now, it would seem so.

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Things I need to continue doing: Knitting. Writing. Creating. Studying. Reading. Letting Go. Tidying. Buy My First Tarot Deck. Set Intentions. Drink Peppermint Tea. Run. Exercise. Make Space. Being Radical. Feministing. Loving. Enjoying. Being In My Thirties.

Ladylove,
Jaqueline xxx

Title: ‘Tantric Prayer’ from Big Om of Tibet by Tibetan Monks

And The Stars Look Very Different Today

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Self-explanatory today. There are now words. Just multiple plays of songs that have meant so much to me and millions of others over the years and leafing through the catalogue of images and memories everything provokes.

One major sadness that I will always carry. I was never lucky enough to see him play live in person. But I’m lucky enough to have been able to share some of the time on this planet with him and be inspired by everything he did.

Keep on keeping on, Starman.

Change Clothes and Go

This is purely a post about outfits I’ve worn recently that I’ve particularly liked and admired myself in. I pride myself on being able to dress well (in my humble and honest opinion, choose to disagree if you wish) and think that occasionally it’s worth sharing the ‘I felt good in this!’ moments.

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9 January 2016
Stripe Funnel Top: Topshop
High Neck Flippy Tunic: Topshop
Nylon Tricot High Waist Leggings: American Apparel
Necklace: The Colourful Dot (Blue Topaz)
Glasses: Prada (mine are black, not tortoiseshell)
Watch: Casio Mens (mine is gold)
Chelsea Boots: Clarks (barely seen, in black)

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25 December 2015
Old Saint Nic Tee: The Bearhug Co
Hawaiian Shorts: Primark
Nylon Tricot High Waist Leggings: American Apparel
Blue Wig: Gift from last Christmas
Tropical Sunglasses: Primark
Coconuts & Dolphin: c/o my sister’s fancy dress collection

20 December 2015
Strappy Back Body: Topshop
Jersey Lace Triangle Bra: Topshop
Moto Washed Black Joni Jeans: Topshop
Glasses: Prada (mine are black, not tortoiseshell)
Tattoos: Backpiece by Jo Harrison, Half Sleeve by Rebecca Vincent

I’ve tried to link directly to what I’m wearing but where there is no link, the item is no longer available or I can’t find a link to it.

Ladylove,
Jaqueline xxx

Blog Title: ‘Change Clothes’ – Jay Z

Someday We’ll Find It.

When we live, we often forget about something along the way. When it came down to it, my blog was the one thing to fall by the wayside. It’s not because I don’t love it and want to take care of it, but I’ve had to find a way to love writing again. To make time again. To be kind to myself and the things I own creatively.

And that time has now arrived. I’m back at university, and whilst that is important to me, it’s not something I’ll be writing about on here very often. Unless it’s something that I think is relevant and suits my blog. I appear to have more time – I don’t, I’m now just using my time more efficiently. I’m having to read more, learn more and do more. It’s tough going but it’s fun and it’s interesting. And I’m trying to treat it like my time to reclaim my brain and my creativity.

Knitting is making a big comeback and I’ve been doing more than ever. I’ve got fabric I’ll be turning into backpacks and knitting project bags and camisole tops. Ideas have been appearing that I need to write down in order to remember and act on. I’ve been doing things by myself that I enjoy doing and feeling great because I’m honouring myself and my interests.

“Tomorrow is never going to be like today and certainly nothing like yesterday.” – Steve Shirley

Ladylove,
Jaqueline xxx

Title: The Rainbow Connection (The Muppet Movie)