‘You know you will have to change things eventually, so why don’t you start today?’
My friend Rachael is kneeling on her window seat, looking out at people passing along the High Street in Laxley, the small town nearest the village. She is wearing a cashmere shawl and a flowing smock because she thinks she may be pregnant again. Today the breeze is fresh and the sun is out and I am in Rachael’s pretty yellow living room, looking for advice.
Rachael is working on another complicated tapestry. ‘Life is about making mistakes,’ she says, threading her needle with primrose silk and looking out on to the street. But Rachael doesn’t believe in making mistakes herself. I know that she is savouring my dilemma, as she delicately draws her needle in and out.
I have told her almost everything. She even knows about the beautiful dream children from the garden over the wall. Sometimes, in my room upstairs, I draw the garden as I want it to be. I replace the conifers with an orchard underplanted with wild flowers, and often I add the two dark little figures. I draw their faces from memory, pale sensitive faces against their long dark hair. Rachael says they are ghost children, visiting from my future. Once she did a tarot reading for me and she saw the children clearly, in the cards.
She wants me to leave Richard because she knows how he has changed me and how he is limiting my possibilities. But she doesn’t know that I am in danger.
‘He isn’t good for you. You need to take responsibility for your own life and move on…. Fulfil yourself!’ It is easy for Rachael to say.
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