Child Suicide - Background Information

In 1990 I started working for a large multinational Computer Corporation. One of my first jobs there was in their software laboratory once situated partially in The Netherlands.. After about a year or so I was relocated from my nice room with a view of a small pond to the new modern wing of the building. I didn't like the surroundings at all as the windows were all heavily filtered and looked black from the outside.

Also there was no healthy social climate there and people just didn't socialize with each other as I was used to. Well after about 6 or 7 months I had had enough. After seriously contemplating throwing my 3270 screen through the blackened window in an attempt to get some sunlight into the room, I realised that I needed to take a "time out" so I could get myself together before completely breaking down.

I decided to take a two week vacation on my own without my girlfriend and son. Portugal was the destination, and having never been there before, I was quite looking forward to it. For the first week I had pre-arranged a trip around Portugal with a car which I had rented for the first week only. This went fine, however the second week, I started to get homesick, which was very strange for me, as I normally loved to travel and also didn't mind doing so alone.
This time it was different and I wanted to get back home as soon as possible. I went into Lisbon to change my flight, but soon found out that all the flights were full and that there were no alternative trips by train or such without spending and enormous amount of money. I was so frustrated by all this that all of a sudden I felt like a prisoner instead of being on vacation. I realised at that time that I was not in good shape mentally, and bought a pile of UK newspapers and locked myself away in my hotel room for a day or two.

In the Sunday Mirror, I stumbled on an article that caught my eye. It was about a young model, 16 years old Michelle Lomas, who had just committed suicide. The newspaper seemed to focus on two major points:

Firstly, her natural father so happened to be Frank Clark, a former famous soccer star. Reading through the tabloid articleI learned that apparently Frank had ran out on Michelle's mum and had no part in her life until she re-established contact with him just a few weeks before her death.

Secondly; Michelle had been doing some modelling for the cosmetics brand Oil of Ulay and appeared in one of their TV commercials and seemed on the outside to be doing very well for herself.

Although the newspaper journalists TIm Willcox and Julia Stone had headlined with "Soccer star Tragic TV Girl's Secret Dad" I decided to headline my song with the morbid title "Child Suicide" as I found that this issue was not given enough attention. Having read the article her meeting up with her father probably had nothing to do with the tragic circumstances surrounding her suicide. More likely was a recent break-up with her boyfriend. I can remember thinking how low does one need to feel in order to become suicidal.

Whatever the case, the story distracted me away from my own miserable circumstances and within an hour or so I had basics for a song which made me feel a lot better and bring me out of my mini-depression. Later back from vacation, I re-arranged the song for piano.