When I met you, I fell in love with you At that Anglican Cathedral, everyday I'm reminded of you, on our journey to school I loved our time together, our travels together, our life together I loved your skin tone, your black beard and hair, your big build and strong legs and features I was so happy in your care
I loved your calm temperament, your intelligence, your ways I loved your family, kids, I listened with interest about your family
Sadly, it all came to an end, your poetry stopped, you faded into the background at the time I needed you most Left alone with our baby Left alone for five years I died a thousand times
I cried oceans of tears I tried to understand why You said I was 'mentally ill', if that was the case, why didn't you care for me still The mother of your child, that will never change, even if we divorce I am the mother of your child
"I've found that writing poetry helps when I'm experiencing extreme emotional pain. That's also a time when my writing is at its best and its a safe, constructive way to deal with and release emotional pain. It's much more productive than numbing pain through self harm, over eating, drinking.
I have a very difficult time living with a mood disorder that really disrupts my life, relationships and ability to work consistently. I did a degree part time in disability studies over 6 years because I don't cope well with too much pressure .
A lot of my degree focused on mental health and faith. I remember studying about mental health and the arts, I really think the arts have a crucial role to play in keeping well and being heard, and expressing yourself and connecting with the outside world. Knowing that you are not alone in your experience.
I recently took part in an arts protect with an artist from Chicago. She interviewed 10 women from Liverpool, each from a different decade. She interviewed us all, I decided to be completely open about my struggles and I'm really delighted with the poem she did for me, about me. She's coming back in April to have all the poems performed by a choir. It was a cathartic experience.
From this experience, I've gone on to set up my own female choir in a mosque and its very cathartic and healing. It's proving a huge success.
All of this inspired me to find my voice. In life I haven't felt heard by those closest to me, like my family and ex partner. Singing and writing is proving beneficial.
My husband left me at the most vulnerable time with a six month old baby, it was an enormous trauma for me and almost killed me. It's taken years to slowly start to heal. I'm not sure if I'll ever quite recover or love anybody else. I feel the grief is worse than if he'd died because that is not personal, or rejection, but when someone leaves you, it is, or at least feels like it is.
So writing helps me heal and be heard, it's a big shout out to others who are going through difficulties too.
I'd encourage others to find their voice too."