By L. A. Westfall
Key Themes: schizophrenia, child carer, fiction, informed by personal experience
At the young age of ten, Gorís life was totally controlled by his mothers mental illness. Gorís only other family was his dead fatherís mum and she only helped for a bit, in fact, she didnít want to know.
With his mum in and out of the local mental hospital, everything fell on Gor's young shoulders; paying bills, buying food.
After a row one night, Gor found himself spending hours on a park bench not knowing what to do.
On the walk home a ladyís car had it seemed broken down; within minutes the lady, Ann Walker, had drugged Gor and bundled him into the car.
About six hours later Gor woke; he was in darkness, chained, scared and very cold.
Gor was just a pawn in Annís sick game. Killing was what she loved best, and the more she did it, the better she became.
Would young Gor become one of her numbers, or would he manage to escape?
Are serial killers born that way?...
Iíll leave that up to you to decide.
About the Author
Westfall was born in 1962 in London. She grew up, to the age of eleven, with parents who thought it was perfectly alright to physically, mentally and sexually abuse her.
At eleven she was taken into care, and, for the next six years, suffered just as much as before but by different hands.
At seventeen Westfall found lovely foster parents, and for the first time, knew what love was.
Due to the years of child abuse, she became mentally ill, and to this day, thirty years on, still battles with this illness each day.
At the age of 27 years she found a man who loved her for who she was, and they were blessed to have a son and daughter together.
Life is hard at the best of times but, by taking just one-day at a time, Westfall says things donít seem so bad.
To die before you get a chance for something good to happen ó is a sin.
I hide from people I have never seen and dread the day that I do. I used to think mum just talked to herself, but now I understand because I feel her pain, I feel her terror, right along beside her.
By the way, my name is Gor, short for Gordon. Gordon Marsh. My mumís name is Peggy. No one calls me by my real name, well only the teachers at school. I do not have any real friends and the only family we have is Nan.
Anyway my story goes back a little over three years; I was just ten then, still a kid.
I remember mumís first hospital stay. Nan collected me from school that day which was something she would never do. I knew something was wrong straight away. Nan just told me that mum had to go in to hospital for a short while for a rest. I think I knew she was lying, I could see how weird mum had been acting.
Nan was right. I only stayed at her house for about four days in all. Mum had pills to take, what for I did not know but I was soon to find out. Mum had always had a very clean and tidy house, but she started to go mad at it. I mean she would polish everywhere again, and again, then vacuum all the rooms, and then vacuum them again. In fact, mum seemed to spend all-day cleaning then re-cleaning.
Nan told me to leave her alone, that she just had some stuff in her head that she had to sort out. I love my mum very much; I had done as I was told. It was like living with a stranger.
The second and third time mum went back in I stayed with my Nan again. It was term time so I was at school most of the time. Social services came to see Nan and me. Nan told the social services that I was being well looked after.
Mum did not get any better; she just had good periodís in-between. Mum started by not going out, oh that pissed Nan off, she had to cash mumís money, pay the bills and get the food shopping, that didnít go down very well. I have to tell you about Nan, she is not mumís mum; she is my dead dadís mum. A drunk driver killed him, when I was about two. I do not remember him. Mum loved him, so that is good enough for me. I think that is why Nan is like she is. Mumís parents are both dead; what of I do not know, I never knew them either. I mean mumís got a sister, but no one ever talks about her. I think she had done something bad or something. Therefore, you see, I do not have many people in my life, so mumís health and well-being are paramount to my future.
Life carried on. My teacher took great delight in asking me how my mum was doing in front of the whole class. I always lied and said she was doing fine, when in truth my home life was becoming a living hell. I mean I thought mum had started talking to herself, even shouting sometimes but it is as if she is talking to someone. Oh, I do not know. I just know that there is only mum and me in the house and it is not aimed at me. Nan laughs when I try to explain, she doesnít care about us, miserable old cow.
Daytime is bearable just, but at night it is bad, I try to sleep but mumís shouting her head off sometimes. I lay awake feeling so alone, sometimes I hear noises, like weird noises. I hide in my bed hoping that whatever got hold of mum doesnít get me while I sleep. Mumís cleaning is at its worst; nurses come in to see her now, because she just will not go out at all, not even in the back yard. They gave her a white box for her pills to go in, so she can see if she has taken them, the box has got different sections for morning, lunch, dinner and bed time. The nurses are a welcome sight; they are always nice to me. Mum just seems to tolerate them. Therefore, life carries on. Nan is grumpier if that could be at all possible. Me, well I have to admit mum really scares me sometimes, but I have to be strong for her sake, night times are my scariest times; I hear voices all around me, shouting, not mumís the noises are making me frightened. I go to mumís room but of course, she is not there; she is still bloody cleaning, so I get under her covers and sometimes pinch myself to stop me going to sleep, it does not work, because I still wake up in mumís bed. I try to tell myself it was all a bad dream, but living as I do, I do not know if it is.
Mum tells me things sometimes when she is at her saddest mostly. That people, the people she cannot see, try to make her hurt herself. Voices inside her head make her do things, bad things to herself, for not obeying them. I cry as she tries her best to confide in me, the horrors that live within her. However, these times with mum make her illness even more frightening to me.
I was twelve yesterday, of course I didnít get anything from mum, but the nurse got a present for me, saying mum had asked her to get it. I knew it was a lie, but I was grateful for the present and the attention. Nan had given me money in a card, very inventive of her. We do not see very much of her these days, she decided, as I was old enough to live in a mad house, that I was old enough to get the mad money, and mad shopping. In other words, she got pissed of with having to do it each week. I mean the warm glow most old people have, missed Nan out I do not think she was even in the queue. I know that is mean but believe me it is the truth.
Two weeks later mum was again taken in to hospital; Nan came around and told me if anyone asked that she was stopping in our house with me, of course thank god she was not. If I had known how wrong that was of her, I would have shopped her. But in the long run I was glad to have the house to myself, plus itís nice to finish the chapter on a high note, for a whole week I had junk food everyday, sweets, pop, and more junk food and videos anything I wanted, god it was wonderful.
'Mother' by L. A. Westfall
'Mother II'by L. A. Westfall
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