I remember years ago now, calling my little kelpie, the "foxy one'.
She had many names but all were from the deep love we had for this one pooch. Heidi Everett's new book, "My Friend Fox", is a beautifully written work, with its addition of equally lovely artworks, scattered throughout. It is nice to hold in its hardback quality. It is at times harrowing, following the initial psych unit hospitalisation and exquisite as Heidi finds her soul twin, Tigger. The moment he comes in to her life, everything changes. I know this myself, with my kelpie. Having the same diagnosis as Heidi, I can relate to the relief of finding such a gorgeous new friend, who always walks ahead, but sometimes walks behind. We find Heidi at 24 in a the dull, drab unit, suffering from soul sadness, and it seems the reasons why, go way back. Neglected at school, she drifts away with the street kids, trying to find her identity, in a small, suburban neighbourhood, that is quite devoid of purpose and even, ambition. My heart breaks when, through no fault of her own, the author ends up seeking sanctuary in the anonymous streets and shelter on beaches and natural spaces, as the paranoia takes hold.
I would say the trauma from hospitalisation can carry wounds far and deep, even after admission dates fade. There is no preaching in Heidi’s words, about how we’re treated, just human feeling and relatable observations on what doesn’t work in these public settings. This book is a testament to the author’s strength and a tangible example of her heightened creativity.