Saturday, 2 January 2010

My journey into the Abyss my brush with suicide

This is my wee story :

THE ABYSS page 1


Sitting in my car in the lay-by on the road to Girvan, I tried to make sense of the last three months, or so. (Bloody hell I thought was it only three months, 90 days)

The day had gone well, the business I had set up was growing so fast to the point I had well over a thousand customers and several contracts. I even had two employees including me. It had taken six hard months trudging the streets, to expand the business and I was so happy.

I leapt to the top of the stairs missing the last two, I was glad to be home. I had bought 4 cans and was looking forward to a beer, and watching a wee bit of telly then an early night. (Even the stink of the urine on the stairs didn't bother me that day) Tomorrow I had an appointment to see the bank manager who, had in principal agreed to a loan for another business idea I had in the pipeline.

I walked up to the door, went to put my key in strange…… where was the lock? It took me a second or two to realise the door had been smashed in. Then it clicked, someone had broken into my house, oh shit. I put my bag down and slowly went in, ready for any sod still there, but after a quick look round I was satisfied they had gone. Standing in the living room I was in shock. The damage they had done was everywhere I looked. It was chaos and almost everything had gone, the large TV was still there, laughing to myself I thought I was glad it had been too big for the sods to steal. But music system etc etc had gone.
I was just coming to terms with it all, when I suddenly remembered the computer my brother in law had given me only a week or so ago, was in the bedroom. I had spent hours and hours putting my customers etc onto it. I ran into the bedroom, GONE everything the monitor printer all my business gear had GONE. I sat on the bed for what seemed like hours, but I reckon I was only there maybe ten minutes, when I heard someone shout Andy. I stood up and went out to the corridor it was Danny. He explained he had found the door forced open about an hour ago, he had phoned the police, he asked if I was ok .I just mumbled “ Yeah mate.” I got a brew together and sitting in the living room waiting for the police to come, I was gutted mostly about the work I had done on the computer for my business.

After an hour the police hadn't turned up, and Danny said "I've got to go mate, you ok?” By then I had got over the shock and just thought sod it, and said "I’m ok mate thanks for your help” and after telling him I would phone, he left. The doorbell went and thought at last but instead of the police it was David and Breda, she was crying and in such a state. Blubbering and asking if I was ok, I just said "its ok Breda don't get yourself so upset"

We had just got to the living room when the police and someone from the council, were at the door. The police came in, and the bloke from the council started to fix the front door, Danny had phoned them what a good mate. The police asked me a load of questions, and basically said that I wouldn’t see any of the gear again and after dabbing some stuff for finger prints they left.

An hour later David and Breda left, and I set about tiding up. By midnight I had finished and went to bed. The next morning I was a bit worried about going out, but eventually convinced myself they wouldn’t break in again, and headed off down the stairs. I passed Brian, who said he had heard and asked if I was ok. Then he asked if I could move some stuff for his mum, a sofa or something. “Aye no bother mate, I will do it when I get back about 6 o'clock.” Then I headed off, good to have friends about.

That day I kept my head down and really enjoyed it, picking up more customers and the meeting at the bank had gone really well too. About 5.30 pm I pulled into Branchton only then did I get a feeling of panic, and all the way up the stairs I was worried what I would find. With huge relief I could see the door was ok, and after letting myself in I went to the chair and collapsed on it and was asleep within two minutes.

By the next day I was feeling good again, and headed to Port Glasgow to see Andrew a friend I had set the business up with. On the way I stopped at a few businesses that had phoned me about a contract and after picking up the contracts went to see my business partner. At 9.00pm I said to Andrew that I had better go, we had had a good time deciding the way the business was going, and arranged to meet up in a day or so as he was ill. I had taken everything on until he felt better.

I jumped the last step OH NO NOT AGAIN the door was forced once again. I went into the living room and straight away I could see the TV had gone. I didn't bother phoning the police, just tidied up and sorted what was left of the door and headed to bed.

The next day I phoned the council and explained I had been broken in twice, and was there any chance of moving. They offered me a flat in the next block (bloody useless) and I put the phone down. Three weeks after this, I reckon they waited till I got some more stuff in, and my house was done again. In the space of a month I had been burgled three times.

I was sat there in my chair, I had gone and got a few beers (a bloody lot really). At about 2.00am there was a knock at the door, it was a young couple I had never seen them before, I asked them in. the story they told me over the next half hour or so, was what shocked and so upset me most about this whole bloody thing.

Brian my next door neighbour was someone I cared for along with his wife. Over the year or so I had know them, I’d helped them many times along with his mum and family. Had been the one, along with someone else who had broken into my house and stolen everything. Also they told me Danny along with Peter, had set up a business along the same lines as me, and were ripping my customers off.

The next day I went to see Brian about the break in, but the reception I got was one of total abuse I simply asked him" Why ?" I also asked Danny and Peter about what I had been told they were up to, and was simply told anyone can set up a cleaning business

I will always remember that young couple who had the courage to visit me in the middle of the night to tell me what had been going on. I hope where ever you both are you have been blessed with a wonderful life.

A week later I was talking to my girlfriend at the time, she asked me to move in with her. I sorted what little was left and walked out of that flat, and never went back there again.

Abyss page 2


Heading over the Erskine Bridge I quickly glanced to my left. The view no matter how many times blew me away. Looking at the river Clyde heading off to the open sea, with the Holy & Gareloch just visible in the distance. Such an incredible view, it always made me so happy to be a Scotsman, living in such a beautiful place.

Driving into Alexandria I was so excited I would soon be with Annemarie, she had helped so much with the recent events, a real rock. Wee Sean her little boy from a previous relationship whom I had really taken to, he was so special, and I still miss him so much. The next few weeks were so happy, apart from the odd wee thing life throws at you. I really started to think that at last my life would be complete, all I wanted was to be there for Annemarie and Sean Paul.

I was so in love, and the day Sean Paul called me DAD I will cherish for as long as I live .One day he came back from school, he was seven and he got out his homework book and I read the story. It was called my DAD Andy I would have died for them both .I pray they are happy and enjoying life. Little did I know that this would be something that would lead to so much trouble.

Annemarie’s mum did not like the fact Sean Paul had taken to me. I was told she was jealous. (I had heard those words so many times in life, I always knew it would mean shit was on the way)

Then it started, and my slide into the abyss had begun:


In the next few weeks the pressure piled on and I really started to struggle. First the phone calls started, Annemarie’s mum would come ring calling me all sorts, swearing etc .I eventually told Annemarie, but she simply didn't believe me. One day her mum was in the living room, and as soon as Annemarie left the room she started. I tried asking what was wrong, but as soon as Annemarie came back into the room her mum would say something like, "Have you had a good day Andy?" I was trying to sort out the best way to handle this.

I went to go to Greenock I had a really important day ahead, and I got into the van really happy and excited. When I looked in the rear view mirror something didn’t look right so I got out. When I got to the rear of the van, I could see the rear door window wasn't there. When I looked down it was sitting against the tow bar with the rubber next to it, at first I thought it had simply popped out, (god I’m slow sometimes) then it hit me someone had took all the equipment, all of it GONE.

I went back upstairs and told Annemarie (I never bothered telling the police) another £2,000 worth of kit gone. It took me the next few days to get over this, I really was struggling now. To add to it all, my mum had been on the phone leaving more of her shit (that is really a whole other story)

By the weekend I was feeling better and I was ready to tackle everything again. I went to see David, who was by now working for me full time. I got to his door and when he answered, I remember thinking he was acting really strange. But I just put it down to me and all the shit that had happened (I learnt to go by my instinct and trust myself)

But when it came to him handing the money over he had taken, it was well down by over £2,500. He just said it had been a really slow week I simply said "Ok mate" and left. Sitting in the van something was niggling at me something wasn't right. I phoned Annemarie and after I told her my doubts, she asked me what I was going to do, I just said "I will sort it, and see you later"

On the way back home I called at a few customers, asked if David had called over and whether he had been paid. All of them said he had been, but in the book he had written NOT IN. I wanted to go back and kick the crap out of him, but I forced myself to calm down and go home before dealing with it. On the way home the phone went, it was mum "I’ve put Jude down" and after some crap she hung up

Walking in the door to the flats I tried to put it all behind me, and I walked in the front door and shouted "Sean bud" He was out but Annemarie was there, she looked dreadful "What’s up "I asked, she said it was my mum making abusive phone calls.

More abusive call things were coming between us now, and we argued about her mum, my mum, now David and Breda, her cousin. She wouldn't believe Breda and David had stolen from me. Also I was getting calls from someone who wouldn't say anything, then hang up twenty to thirty a day and through the night. I found out later it was Breda, her excuse was she had fallen in love with me.

That night I slept on the sofa, and never spoke to Annemarie all night. The next day I got up and tried to go over to Greenock, and get on with things. My first stop was David’s house .I knocked the door and at first, I thought he wasn't going to come to the door but eventually it opened and he asked me in.

Abyss page 4:
Well after an hour or so of verbal bollocks, David finally agreed that he had taken the money, he agreed to pay it back monthly and I left. I have never seen them again

Pulling into Donald’s yard I was sad that David had screwed me over, but I was trying to stay positive and so went into the shop to organise some more equipment with a smile on my face . But over the next few weeks things piled on more, but I reckon I have put you through enough dear reader, suffice to say it got the point I left Annemarie and Sean Paul a mutual thing really.

One day I was at the bank in Greenock, you had to go up an escalator to the bank on the first floor, hand the money in then go down a flight of stairs back onto the street I was half way up the escalator when I turned around and thought F**K it. By now I was completely beaten down, and spiralled into a depression. The like I had never been in before. I had totally switched off emotionally and physically, I felt drained. I headed down to see some friends Chris & Jacinta, what a bloody mistake that was a maybe I will write more later about that. I handed the business to a couple who I had met and liked that were struggling for free.

After a few days, I got a phone call from the lad I had given the business to, which included everything, the van ,insurance, equipment all the customers etc. He was moaning about this and that, and for the next few days kept calling complaining. I had had enough and said I would be up to sort it out. Two days later, I went up collected the van and everything else. I went down the road, to see bloke I had met that had started a similar business to me, and sold the lot to him for £400 then headed back to Chris’s. I had started to drink by now, really heavily but I was still helping out back at the house, doing the dishes firewood and paying for food etc.

Then one day Annemarie phoned and I totally lost it. I smashed the phone and stormed down the field to the house. when Chris and Jacinta found out I had smashed the phone, they looked at me like I was crazy. I turned round got in the car and headed off, me and Craig my wee dog. I knew at that moment I was going to take Craig to my sister’s house and then head to Glenfruin and finish it once and for all.

Abyss page 5
Driving up the road I stopped at every shop on the way, and got 8 cans of Guinness and some paracetamol as many as I could get. Then I would head off down some more pills, and wash them down with the beer. I had nothing left. I had never in my life, felt so cold and empty. But the strange thing was I felt relieved to have come to the decision, to take my own life. At last I would have PEACE PEACE which I wanted so much. I had cried so much over the last couple of months, there really wasn't a single tear left, just the absolute surrender to my chosen fate.

I can't really remember the drive. I was in a tunnel driving carefully as I have always done, I had learnt to drink and dive in the army another skill they had given me. By the time I got to my sisters in Helensburgh I was feeling really bad sweating etc, but before I knocked the door I sorted myself out, and took a deep breath. I went in, and then quickly made some excuse about going to the shop so I could leave Craig, and left.

I headed up to the Fruin and pulled the car to a stop, by the river a beautiful spot I have been to many times in my life. I turned on the radio and carried on drinking and swallowing handfuls of pills. It was funny after a few handfuls I stopped tasting the bitterness of the pills, and slowly I started to struggle My arms started to feel so strange and I fell asleep at last I thought PEACE.

Thank you god and I am sorry for being weak.......



I heard some voices and a really bright light was shinning into my eyes. Thank god I’ve done it im dead I thought. Then my brain started to make sense of what was being said and I heard “ANDREW ITS THE POLICE.” I struggled like hell to pull myself up, gutted that I had even fucked up my suicide. Eventually I managed to open the window and asked" Yes what's up?” He asked me if I was ok and I said yeah fine, but he then asked what the bottles lying on the road were. I tried to say that I had no idea, and then he noticed all the empty cans and paracetamol bottles. He said that I was to go to the hospital, I tried again saying I was fine, but he then said if I didn’t come with them, they would forcibly take me to the hospital. His mate headed off round the car, I just thought go on you bastard get me for some minor traffic offence !!

The copper I had been talking to then explained that his brother had taken his own life 2 weeks before. He talked to me so gently and I want to say thank you SIR wherever you are, you saved my life and I will always remember you.

We pulled into the hospital and the two bobbies took me in through the doors. One went to the nurse’s station, and I just sat trying to get my thoughts together. The radio went off and the copper turned and said to me "Take care my friend and try to be strong" we have to go.

The curtains were pulled round me and I sat on the bed, a nurse came in asked me a couple of questions, then I was left for what seemed like ages. Then I heard two nurses talking saying "We don’t need the likes of him here, after all we are really too busy to waste time with the likes of him.” I realised they were talking about me, I got off the bed and walked right past them and out the door.

I saw my sister heading towards me, she asked if I was ok I just nodded and we headed back to her house When I went through the door, Craig ran to me and jumped up at me, then snuggled up by me on the floor. I’d only been in the house about fifteen minutes when my sister started. I was listening but I tried to let what she said to me drift over me. Then she tutted as only my sister can at me, apparently I was sniffing too loud .I stood up and said "I really don't need this shit Brenda” and headed out the door calling Craig.
I had just got into my car and was about to head off when I felt four or five punches to my face, it was Brenda and she was screaming all sorts of shit at me. I tried to get the key into the ignition when she punched me again, I flew out the car and went for her, she fell at the steps, I booted her then turned got in my car and left.

I drove for an hour or so passing the house where not long before I had been happy with Annemarie and Sean Paul, past David and Breda’s house, past my old house in Greenock until finally I left it all behind and pulled into the lay-by.


I pray that anyone who is going through depression finds peace and light in 2009

the daft hermit

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Andy the Daft Hermit lives 45 minutes outside Inverness with his wife Mel in an old bus parked in a layby. This current home of theirs is the longest they have ever stayed in one spot. “I’ve been travelling now 25 years,” said Andy Lowe. “Mel’s been travelling 15. One of the reasons we’ve come and stayed up here is because of Mel’s health. I wanted to bring her to the mountains for fresh air and clean water and just a slower pace of life.” Mel has had breast cancer twice, skin cancer once, and for three years believed she had bone cancer after being wrongly diagnosed. Andy’s belief in the restorative powers of the north made them pack up ‘The Black Bus’ that they live in and cross the border into Scotland. New Highland home for hermit couple Andy and Mel “I think we both believe in trying to get to a more simple way of life,” said Andy, “but it’s strange for us because we are sort of hermits, or we like to live separate, but it’s not being anti-social… it’s just the way we are that allows us to be creative.” Andy first began travelling when he left the army. Fed up with bureaucracy he packed a rucksack and left for France and has been travelling ever since. By investing any money the couple have earned into solar panels and wind generators they now live a self-sustaining existence, without electric bills, and collect rain water “straight from Heaven”. “It’s not easy,” said Mel. “There might be time when there might not be enough facilities around, but you always find a way, you know?” Rather than rejecting technology, Andy blogs about his travels online and collaborates with artists from around the world via his ‘Scratchy Heid Film Studio’, which he runs from a static trailer next to the couple’s bus. He explained his philosophy: “My belief is that if you can go through life and you drop dead and you’ve got a balance there that slightly outweighs the good than the bad, you’ve done alright. “Yesterday, with what Mel’s been through with the cancer and all that, I had a woman on one of my sites there that thanked me for the writing, for the positive things, and to me that’s worth everything. You can keep your millions, we’re not interested. That is what we do.” To check out Andy’s artwork and video projects check out his website. MORE FROM THE NORTH

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