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  • Barbara Copperthwaite

Joy and pain x

“Whatever success I am celebrating today, I dedicate it to everyone in sorrow today”

Today is a big day. A HUGE day. One of those ‘I’ll always remember this’ days that is full of joy.

But it is also a day that brings back memories of a very different time for me.

It is the eleventh anniversary of London’s 7/7 bombings. Thank goodness, I wasn’t involved in it, and didn’t know anyone who was. There but for the grace of God, really, because I worked in London at the time and used the Circle line every single day. Every Single. Day. But that day, I wasn’t, because I had had two incredibly traumatic events unfold in my personal life, and had taken that week off work. I won’t go into the details of what had happened, there’s no need to, but suffice to say that one of those things alone would have poleaxed anyone. Both at the same time? I was overwhelmed. I felt as if my life had completely fallen apart, and that everything – EVERYTHING – I had taken as solid and real in my life had been snatched out from under me. I was at absolute rock bottom, emotionally drained, physically a wreck. I remember curling up on the floor and sobbing, wondering if I’d ever have the strength to stand.

For a while every anniversary of the London bombings reminded me of that terrible time in my personal life. Of course, as horrific as what I was going through was, it was absolutely nothing compared to what was happening in London. With each anniversary, the pain has faded for me, and I’ve been able to carry on with my life, unlike so many people whose lives were taken or torn apart that fateful day. I’ve been lucky and never forgotten that.

Some of my dark thoughts from that time were used as inspiration for my first novel, Invisible.

And that brings me to today. This morning, I checked how Invisible was doing on Amazon – and discovered it is not only number 19 in the UK’s Kindle Noir category – but is also number 60 in America! This is the very first time it has charted in the US and I couldn’t be prouder.

Woo-hoo! I’ve become an INTERNATIONAL best seller!!!!

Then I realised what today was. And I felt incredibly proud of how far I had come. Eleven years ago I was at rock bottom emotionally. I didn’t know if I would ever feel ‘normal’ again, let alone happy. But I do – and I’ve achieved so much.

So if you’re feeling down, please, please, please remember that even when it feels endless, unhappiness is just a moment in your life. You will get past it. Hell, you might even be able to take that pain, make use of it, and create a pearl. Whatever success I am celebrating today, I dedicate it to everyone in sorrow today.

Much love xx

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