Jane Campbell: Imaginary School
Here Jane recalls creating a false identity for her local friends.
TranscriptSo when I was at home with my friends from the street, my local friends – by then I had a really good friend called Sue. And I decided I would have to create a school life so that I could feel equal and talk to my friends at home. And I was really very, very sort of keen – well, I remember I refused to allow, or to invite, anyone around before 4:30 because I didn’t want them to see that I was being dropped off in the school bus with loads of other 'crips'. I didn’t tell them anything about my special school and my special school life and I created another school. And I got my mother, my poor mother, to go and source a school uniform that I could wear. And I remember she even managed to get me a badge at the jumble sale to sew onto the blazer. And so I was in my school uniform and I had this briefcase, this satchel, that I would put all my sister’s castoffs, maths books, history books – and I got my mum to buy me some of these books, you know, these books with lines, the books you had, and I would create my school. And I even went to the extent of doing my homework with my friends, doing things like mathematics and equations that I had no clue about whatsoever. And looking back, it makes me think, oh my gosh, I was a pathological liar. I’m happy to say though now, I always tell the truth and nothing but the truth, but in those days half my life was a complete fraud.
A selection of other stories...
Here Tara describes the attitudes her mother experiences in the hospital after giving birth and the impact of those attitudes.
Here Mavis talks about being denied entry to her local grammar school.
Here Simone talks about the isolation she felt from her family and her community.