N I C E

As many writers/poets/authors/people in the creative industry generally do, I have a problem with the word ‘nice’. 

‘Nice’ can be a compliment, of course, but for me, it’s more of an insult. It’s a safe word, a go to when you’ve had a fairly average time, if something has been just alright. It doesn’t scream passion, positivity or power. It lies down and lets you tread over it. Words like ‘incredible’, ‘wonderful’, ‘amazing’ stamp over it in their Dr Marten’s, showing it who’s boss. ‘Nice’ can be used to explain a cardigan. I don’t believe it should be used to describe a person or a feeling.

Three months ago, I sought solace in as many prescription tablets and as much alcohol as I could get my grubby hands on. I wasn’t sure what I was trying to achieve, I just didn’t really want to be here. A combination of a four day festival, not really being happy in my day to day life and the uncertainty of the future left me certain I wanted to stop the world and get off. 

But my family, best friends and greatest support system came to my rescue; they weren’t just being ‘nice’ when they literally saved me. It wasn’t just ‘nice’ to see them after three days of being sedated in bed, alone. ‘Nice’ wasn’t them calling me every day just to check I had eaten something or showered.

No. They were/are rockstars. Fearless in their efforts and attempts to make me realise, first hand, how lucky I was/am to be breathing in fresh air every day, falling asleep underneath the same stars that fascinate me and tasting food that they had lovingly prepared. ‘Nice’ will never give them the credit they deserve.

As somebody who claims to be a writer, I’ve tried several times to write about this time of my life. The lines are blurred, the edges faded a bit – I guess that’ll be the sedatives I was pumped full of – but I think it’s important to document an occasion, so to speak, that defines me.

Don’t get me wrong, I will never let a cry for help introduce me, like a weak handshake at a party. I will not be the girl who walks into a room full of whispers and hushed tones as the memo gets passed around. I will always be more than that. 

In the same way my support system will always be more than ‘nice’, we should learn to give ourselves more credit. 

Yet as each failed writing attempt built up, and the weeks passed in which I still couldn’t bring myself to utter the words “thank you for being there” (through embarrassment, fear, even rejection maybe), my support system grew stronger. They gave me more reasons to thank them. It’s like they knew how awkward it made me…

They let me pack my bags up and move into their spare room. They fed me. Cooked me dinner. Dragged me to hot yoga and pumped me full of vitamins. Watched scary films with me (a cliched sentence about avoiding my own demons). Encouraged me to step outside of my comfort zone. Let me borrow their clothes. Took me to their favourite parts of London. Encouraged me to seek help. Guided me in dropping the negativity. Let me into their worlds when mine was falling apart.

A ‘nice’ support system is very easy to find. A ‘nice’ support system will sugar coat things to make it easier for you to swallow. Hell, a ‘nice’ support system probably won’t even be around to support you. ‘Nice’ doesn’t believe in sticking around when the going gets tough. 

A fucking incredible support system will give you reason to stick around.

Three months ago, when I couldn’t see to the end of my nose, let alone to a brighter future, my family and best friends came to the rescue; I’ve spent twenty minutes trying to write an ending to this post that does them justice, without being too cringe-worthy, but my words all seem like clones of ‘nice’.

I’m not sure I’ll ever nail a way to write about the people who have given me life, instead of letting me take my own, but I know that when I realise how to write it properly, my words will be wearing Dr Marten’s and stamping all over that fucker ‘nice’.

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