Sheila Jackson

Screen-Shot-2018-03-15-at-3.55.51-PM
Maggie O’Neill – Sheila Jackson
( http://www.kiwireport.com/cast-shameless-uk-like-now/ )

In (approximately) 2006 a friend came to me, “Have you seen Shameless? It’s brilliant. I love it. There’s someone in it who is agoraphobic, like you!” They leant me the DVD’s – I watched a couple of episodes…

“This is not agoraphobia.”
“Is this meant to be how agoraphobia is? Am I even doing this wrong?”
“What is this?”
“I don’t want to ever see this again.”

I never watched it again. It made me feel sick. I was so angry and so depressed. I should have very clearly been able to relate to this.

My friends are watching this. Is this what they think my life is now?

Even now, googling “Shelia Jackson UK agoraphobia” comes up with nothing but references to the character’s sexual ‘deviances’.

 

 

joan-cusack-shameless-tv-2011-photo-GC
Joan Cusack – Sheila Jackson
( http://www.snakkle.com/galleries/before-they-were-famous-stars-happy-birthday-actress-joan-cusack-snakkle-looks-back-on-her-career-in-photos-then-and-now/joan-cusack-shameless-tv-2011-photo-gc/ )

I have Netflix – Netflix provides me with the knowledge that Shameless was turned into an American show…

“Holy shit!”
“Oh.”
“I don’t know if I can watch this.”
“This is it! This is what it was! This was me!”

Never in my life have I been so pleased to find a show that represents me. There is humour, there is sex but the moments of this character’s struggle are so brutally honest that I sometimes cannot look. It is amazing.

I am also aware as I consider this, that each person will have their own experiences with such illnesses. I am aware that the UK Shameless had a large following and was adored.

American shows sometimes get the reputation in England of being overly dramatic, leading to me being unsure as to whether to tune in, to begin with. I had expected it to be extremely over the top and while it may be the case in later episodes (I’m not there yet), this character portrayed by Joan Cusack is a breath of fresh air.

It can be so difficult to find someone within TV/film who you see yourself in when you’re an unboxed member of society.

I am thankful that I found this, my 15-year-old self rejoices. Loudly.

Hope

I had a jar of hopes – a literal jar that I would fill with small pieces of paper with my hopes written down.

Today, the wind sent the jar flying and it smashed. All my hopes that I have not read since I wrote them down, scattered all over the floor. I have debated for a long time, ‘when would be the right time to¬†open the jar and rediscover my hopes?’ Maybe fate saved me from coming up with an actual answer.

I hope CBT will be my cure (2011)
I hope we don’t stay long (2011)
I hope Grandad comes home today (2011)
I hope to be brave (2012)
I hope to get on a bus today (2012)
I hope to get my head around maths (2012)
I hope my first day at Franklin goes well (2012)
I hope to know what I want (2015)
I hope to travel (2016)
I hope to make all the changes that I need to make (2016)

And then there is this:
I stopped hoping. For some reason, at some point hoping didn’t seem to be enough. My Grandad is dying, my Nanna is dead. (No date)