Trip 5, Day 2

I’m so full of the most delicious food. The weather is scorching. And I’m totally relaxed.

Ok, not completely.

I have written before about Day 3 wobbles. Yes, I know it’s Day 2, but I need to understand why they happen. My previous theory was that the build up of adrenalin, anxiety, excitement finally dissipate on this day, leading to an emotional outbreak.

That still may be the case. However, I’ve had a new revelation.

Last night and today have been as magical as ever. We’ve laughed, we’ve loved. We cuddled, we’ve relaxed.

And it’s in these moments, these moments of absolute bliss, that my heart just swells fit to bursting with love.

Today, he asked for the ring I’d made him. I’d brought it but hadn’t given it him as … well, because it clearly meant more to me than him. I asked him where mine was – he said he didn’t have one.

But he asked for the one I had made, and I gave it him. He asked which finger and we had the whole engagement finger discussion, just like time I was there. He did the whole pretend proposal thing too. I’m not fooled. But he’s kept his ring on and I caught him showing his mother too. He’s worn it all through dinner too.

So, Day 3 wobbles are about fear. Fear that these big feelings I have are not reciprocated. They start earlier than Day 3 and build. It’s disappointment that he’s not showing his big feelings like I am (like a woman to be fair).

I promised myself I would be positive, and I’m really trying to be. I trying not to let expectations or conditions ruin my trip. I’m trying to be the best me I can – happy and relaxed.

But, I can tell you this. Everytime I see that silver ring flash on his hand I feel a pang of some unnamed amalgamation of feelings. I want it to be real, so badly. I want to belong to him, and him to me. I long for it. It hurts that it’s not real. It’s disappointment and fear that it never will be. It’s hatred for myself that I’m not good enough for him to ask me. It’s disillusionment- there is nothing I can do.

Expectations have a huge part to play in this. I knew this when I was stood waiting for the train. My Expectations cause my pain. Hope causes me pain.

So I go back to my affirmations.

I’m here with no expectations. I’m going to laugh and love and relax. I’m going to enjoy his company and not put any pressures on me or him or our relationship.

I’m going to appreciate every wonderful moment without letting unrealistic expectations cloud the good I have.

One said he loved me

One said he loved me, but played me like a game,

One said he loved me, but loved another just the same,

One said loved me, but later laughed upon my face,

One said he loved me, then disappeared without a trace.

When you say you love me, don’t be surprised if I do fear.

When you say you love me, speak to my heart not just my ear.

When you say you love me, say it loud so the world does know,

For perhaps when you say you love me, I won’t be afraid you’ll go.

Trip 4: Day 3, why?

A night of thinking and postulating, again.

Why, why do I do this? Why do I have to cause problems? Create problems? Why can’t I just take each day as a gift and be happy?

It’s clear to anyone who reads my blog (thank you by the way 😊) that I am deeply in love with Wildcard. I’ve told you that he is everything I want and dreamed and yet my all-encompassing fear of losing him clouds the good that we have.

Last night, I got upset. Again. I hate myself for writing it and saying it and feeling it.

After a moment of perfect intimacy and love, fear took over.

It seems to be a pattern.

I get excited, so excited.

I arrive. I’m so happy.

And then I realise, despite it being impossible, that I love him even more than I thought. Every moment of being close; his joking and teasing, our laughter; our talking and eating and sharing every moment; our love making….my heart and soul swell like they will just burst. And as soon as I feel like that fear comes rushing in.

He doesn’t feel the same. Always that, always.

Where is my evidence? Well, my brain, trying to protect me in this very vulnerable state, finds it. Seeks it out.

Of course now, after sleeping and more love making, I see the idiocy and error of my ways. But at the time? At the time I feel like my world is falling apart. I even looked for an early flight home. Ri-di-cu-lous. As if I could tear myself away from him.

Expectation is the route of all disappointment. I know this. Yet I fall for it whether I want to or not.

I seek out evidence of him feeling like I do, constantly forgetting that as a man, as a man from a completely different culture, he will not show it as I do, how I expect, or even how I want. So when I don’t see it, I let that goddamn tsunami of fear sweep over me, obliterating rational thought. Every. Time.

I need to find a way of explaining this to him so he doesn’t think me completely crazy. I’ve tried to explain that these are my problems, not his and that I recognise that and apologise for it (thank you Tony Robbins).

But. He isn’t entirely innocent.

I suspect, and long have, that he has his own set of demons and past relationship trauma. Whilst he tells me and shows me he loves me every day, he’s never allowed himself to be truly vulnerable around me. He’s never completely let me in. And it’s no good asking him – the more I ask, the more he refuses. He won’t be forced to say anything unless he wants to say it.

I don’t dislike that about him. I would rather something was said heartfelt than half-heartedly because it is forced. Unfortunately, that doesn’t help when I’m drowning in the anxiety-tsunami.

He’s at work now. Things were OK, good, between us this morning. He text me to ask about a deleted message I sent last night. It simply told him I couldn’t sleep. He knew it wasn’t just barking dogs.

Another issue, is that whilst a part of me knows I am being unreasonable, and tries to hide this from him, he always knows. And then I have to try, but often just avoid and then fail, to explain in any way where I come out positively.

And so, here I am. 12 o clock on my 3rd day here and I’m nervous that he is well and truly fed up of me. Because even if my initial thoughts and worries were false, they have now caused an actual problem.

So what could change this ridiculous cycle? I have no idea. Last night, after he repeatedly pressed me to tell him and I repeatedly avoided..we had a tickle fight, he refused to tell me what I wanted to hear (in his head he’s thinking, why? Why do I need to say it again – have I not just proved it?) I was sad, and then he held me and kissed me over and over, telling me he loves me. He loves me.

Harry

It’s still less than two weeks since I came home and left Wildcard. It feels like months.

But it’s OK. I’ve got myself a new boyfriend. He is called Harry.

Harry was kind of foisted on me. I told him repeatedly that Wildcard was the only man for me, but he was insistent.

He makes me laugh from the moment I set eyes on him. He is loving and gentle and open. He says the things that Wildcard implies but only rarely states.

We decided to call him Harry because it’s an English name. The original name was ‘Carlos’ but that didn’t sound right either.

Visually, he is a little freaky. Big, almost white-blue eyes that stare at you from behind black circular glasses. Wide, rounded cheeks and a double chin. He has a dark beard and dark hair like Wildcard though…. His voice is higher, and whines.

Regular readers, have I confused you? Let me explain.

Wildcard makes me laugh like no one else has ever done. My family has always joked that I have no sense of humour. Apparently that isn’t true – I just hadn’t found the right person to make me laugh.

Wildcard and I talk on Messenger. And on Messenger, there are filters which get updated regularly. My sides have split over his pizza face and when he was a corn on the cob. It’s not just the filter of course – it’s what he does and says. He is hysterical.

With or without filters, he knows how to make me laugh. The things to say, the faces to pull…the silly dances, the jokes.

With this new filter though, he has created an alter ego. Harry is the romantic person that Wildcard won’t be.

It’s true that whilst I laugh readily at Harry and his antics, his appearance is a little quirky. And yet, I’ve grown to love this romance and affection. He says what I want Wildcard to say.

Harry has been around for about a week now. I’ll admit, my overthinking, over-analytical brain considered why Wildcard can’t say these things- he’s created Harry as his opposite. He must know that is what I want him to say. Why can’t he say it?

Well first, he does say it. He says it when it is right for him. Second, he is saying it. Which made me question why he needs to be in character to do it.

Why is he afraid to be readily open about his feelings?

I guess there is only a couple of reasons why. He isn’t like that – not everyone wears their heart on their sleeve.

And I suppose the other is fear. Fear of opening up. Fear of getting hurt. Over the past two years of being together, I’ve pieced together that his first girlfriend hurt him. He loved her. She pushed him to marry and he wasn’t ready so she went and found someone else – her ultimatum didn’t work and suggested that she found this man whilst still with Wildcard. I’ve deduced that he has never really forgiven her despite still being ‘friends’. She knows about me and has questioned him about our relationship. She has hinted about leaving her husband and being with him. He told me he can never forgive her.

It explains a lot of his jealousy and paranoia and his reactions when he has believed me to have done something wrong – like the getting a lift from my ex. I’ve always know he is less secure than he makes out he is. Perhaps now I have reason why.

Power

I’m lying in bed and I have tears streaming down my face. Some are through pain and some through laughter.

Wildcard is definitely moody. But he won’t talk about it.

So I’m not sure if it is the fact my ex (and my daughter) drove me home or the fact that he thought my sister had, and now knows she didn’t. It is probably both.

He is still calling me at the usual times. There is an awkward atmosphere occasionally. Other times he talks as normal; I swear until he remembers he is supposed to be annoyed. He won’t tell me he loves me though, or kiss me goodbye. I expect that now, as after 18 months I know his m.o. when he is annoyed with me. Yesterday I managed relatively comfortably with it, somewhat secure that it will probably pass with time.

Today has been a little different.

I was heart warmed when he messaged me first thing with ‘Good morning my love.’ I hoped this signalled he had got over it and would be back to himself. He had quite a stressful day on today which I know had been bothering him so I wasn’t surprised when he didn’t respond to my reply for a while.

His contact today has been limited though. He eventually called me at lunch when he was at a restaurant with his parents. The call was brief and he had no headphones so couldn’t talk much. As requested, he did call me back to show me what they were eating- and I had asked for a picture because it was something traditional I had not seen before. But still, no love you, no kisses and no response when I questioned it.

Since then my mood has dipped. I’m already anxious about this relationship and things like this don’t help. I took myself off to bed and wept a little.

My ex is angry I’m with Wildcard. Wildcard is angry I got a ride with my ex. My daughter would have been upset if I had got a hotel. I can’t win.

I lay in bed feeling the despair of uncertainty all over again. No news from the union. No call from Wildcard. No sign of any decent jobs.

And so I prayed. I thanked for the life I did have: my family and friends, the opportunities I’ve had, my health. But then I asked for help. I asked for strength. I asked that I could stop worrying and be happy and enjoy my relationship. I asked for guidance.

I swear to you, within minutes Wildcard called. He was visiting family. The call was brief but at least he called. He messaged then to say he was tired, it was very hot and we would talk later.

I lay back down and thought. He must have seen that I looked a little upset. But at least he called. I could see he was tired after a stressful day and a lot of travelling so now was not the time to air grievances. I felt a little better but was still anxious to move on.

As my eyes began to close again, and considering this was only five minutes after Wildcard’s call, the phone rang again.

This time it was test and trace. They’ve called every day. I wasn’t in the mood but knew I had to answer. A youngish male voice answered and started his spiel. I interrupted and asked if I was going to be called every day. He replied yes, and that I would probably know the script better than him by now and should he continue at speed?

I told him to continue, I would listen and I.knew he was only doing his job. He then proceeded to speak as quickly as he could, meaning I was laughing hysterically down the phone. He paused, asked if I was crying or laughing, then started again. Amidst laughing, I answered his questions. He retorted that he could tell I was at home from the echo of the room – was I residing in a Palace? Did I have any further questions?

I replied no, but asked if he could call me tomorrow as that had been the best call I’d had so far from Test and Trace.

He said it was probably the worst then told me he would say the next part slowly so I could hear him properly. He then proceeded to read at speed again, and I was laughing once more.

He finished the he wished me a good day and said he hoped he would get to speak to me again.

The call ended with a smile and I thanked the power of prayer and laughter.

Return to the doghouse, or, rejection.

I’ve been home a few days now. I did start to write a post about my final day but didn’t know how to finish it.

I slept the majority of the two days I’ve been home so far. I don’t know why. Sure, travel tires you but I don’t normally feel this tired. I hurt my neck in the journey home- my back pack was far too heavy and I felt it pull. Since then I have limited motion to the right and felt sick with the pain. Maybe that’s what is wrong.

And maybe it is a lot of things.

Perhaps it is the state of the house. I left my 17 year old, seemingly mature daughter to take care of the pets. She had friends round and her Dad and aunties checked on her. The house was a mess. Think: sour milk that never got to the fridge, pizza boxes with mouldy pizza in and enough empty soft drink bottles to make a raft. Oh and she hasn’t washed a towel in two weeks. However, the pets are all well and alive so that is something. I’ve never left her alone before so maybe this is typical.

Maybe it is that I now need to think seriously about my future. I need to find a job or start my business. My hope of coming home with a sense of the future was dashed – I know that I must plan for myself alone.

Maybe it is the fact that my ex is barely speaking to me for going to see Wildcard and Wildcard is now barely speaking to me because he found out that my ex and daughter ended up getting me from the airport when my sister let me down. Yep, figure that one out.

And then this morning I was woken by my nearly 50 year old half sister – the one I haven’t spoken to for three years – at 6.30am crying and hammering on the door. She was drunk, in distress, and had fallen out with my even more aggressive half brother who had pushed her over. I have lots and lots of bad history with her, but I have good also. She is very much alone – a fact she is aware of as much as her blame for that. My Dad would be heartbroken to see her like that. She is involved with a man who is no good and as I sat there and watched her I just felt awful. She has told me some of the things he has said to her, apparently in jest, and I could see how this has made her change her appearance. His drinking and drug use have clearly increased her own drinking. But most of all, I just saw someone who was lost. Missing her Dad (she has no mum) and just craving love and attention to the point of changing herself. I saw me. And I didn’t like it.

How much of what I feel for Wildcard comes from that loneliness, that desperation for love and acceptance? I have lived a life rejected by my half siblings, simply for being born. In turn they have marginalised me from the rest of my dad’s family- only the ones who don’t get on with them, get on with me.

However much they chased me afterwards, my ex husband, my first boyfriend and Lost Soul played with my feelings enough and let me down to the point of rejection. I forgave and accepted and tried, but in the end gave up on them. Once I’d given all I had, there was no more going back – regardless of their promises and pain and love.

I’ve had issues with friends – the one who rejected me because of my relationship with Wildcard for example. And now there is work. Rejection if ever I’ve felt it. I’m not wanted.

So what if, my desperation for a life with Wildcard comes from that? He has shown me undue attention in two years. He is deliciously handsome and funny and knows me like no other. What if my desire to run away from the rejection here is a key incentive in my commitment to him? I would be lying if I told you I hadn’t thought of starting a new life there.

And he does hurt me, from time to time. He says things to make me nervous. He can be childish and maybe even a little spiteful – he’s angry with me now (even though he says he isnt) so his response to my ‘I love you’ is ‘I know’. Oddly, it hasn’t affected me like it usually does. I know him well enough to know why this has put him on edge. I know how he behaves when he feels this way. And I know, usually, it will blow over. He is still calling me and answering my calls and texts. He will stew, he may discuss, he will forget. Maybe.

But no matter which way you look at it, I was desiring more ‘finality’ in our relationship than he was. And that feels like rejection too. Maybe he isn’t ready. Maybe it is finances. Maybe he wants to meet my children. Maybe it is too soon for his parents. Maybe my behaviour freaked him out. Maybe I want too much, too soon. Maybe it is not meant to be.

And this, then, is my problem. I’ve lost all faith in my own judgement and thinking. The more I think, the less I know. The more I think, the more possibilities my stupid brain comes up with. So many, that I can reject and accept everyone with no clear decision on which is most likely.

So, I’m in the doghouse. And I’ve a feeling that I am the only one who can get myself out.

Day 12/13 – in the night

For me, thinking of any kind leads only to more thinking. I sometimes wish I could just switch my brain off.

Yesterday, after questioning me, I opened up to Wildcard and asked about what’s next. I explained that I had flights I needed to move and asked how I should proceed. He looked genuinely surprised that I needed to ask. He repeated that I can come when I want etc etc. I said no, does he want me to come? He replied, “I want you to come.” Despite some gentle probing/suggesting, there was little more said.

Yes, he was unwell, but he spent most of the afternoon on the sofa. I sat with him a while but started to feel in the way. I asked him, and he said I was crazy and that I didn’t need to go anywhere.

Hours passed though. I suggested we watched a film together ‘or something’ and he half agreed. But when I came back from the kitchen he had started to watch his TV series.

I once read something that said there is a part of your brain that wants you to be happy. So when you get a thought in your head, this part of your brain actively searched for evidence, manipulates evidence, to make that thought true.

And so it was with me. He doesn’t want to watch anything with me. He’s bored. I’m invading his space. He didn’t want me to come. He’s not even touching me now. Should I try to go home earlier?

And so on.

Eventually, I went into the bedroom and got my laptop out. That way, I was giving him the space he may have wanted or, if he chose, he could come to find me and we could watch something. It beat just sitting there.

After a few moments his mother called as she had made fresh orange juice. We sat together, but once finished he lay back down to watch his series. I stayed there for five or ten minutes then went back into the bedroom.

Not long after I heard his mum speaking to Wildcard and he shouted me. I came out and his mum disappeared. It appears she had questioned him on why we were not sitting together. He asked if I was angry at him and I said no, but I just wanted to do something with him. He reminded me he was ill and asked,what? What did I want to do? He didn’t feel like watching a film.

His mum returned with tea and cake and there was a heated conversation between them. I drank tea but there was an atmosphere. We talked a little and then it was time for bed.

He kissed me tenderly, repeatedly, and asked if I was angry or sad. I said no, and so he said goodnight.

But I was. I was now convinced that whilst he has feelings for me, they’re not of the depth or intensity of mine. He probably didn’t want to say anything whilst I was there but that it would probably come when I went home.

I was being childish and sulky but I felt genuinely sorry for myself. I reflected that I didn’t think I was a challenging girlfriend (you may beg to differ) as what I wanted was simple. I don’t need expensive gifts or fancy restaurants. All I want is to feel loved, every day. I want to feel, that in his eyes at least, I am beautiful and wanted. That I am his. That’s all.

Whilst my brain could find some evidence of that, at that moment it wasn’t enough. So I cried. And I felt sorry for myself. And I accepted that once again, I felt more for someone than they did for me. I felt my cloud nine dreams come crashing down around me and my heart ached. Maybe my friend was right – I’d put him on a pedestal. My attraction to him was making me feel like I was punching above my weight and that was making me feel insecure. She told me he was lucky to have me and that I should be patient and have faith. I was feeling none of this.

During this time he had messaged asking if I was OK, and I had said yes. There was no point going over everything again.

Not having washed my make up off and crying had led to stinging eyes and, sniffling a little, I went to the bathroom to wash my face. He heard me and shouted and I said I was OK, just washing my face. He continued to call me. I dried my eyes and feeling I’d hidden my tears the best I could, went to him.

He knew, as well as I did that I had been upset. But I didn’t see the point in trying to talk anymore. I had come, we’d had fun, but I wasn’t who he wanted in his future. That was what I had decided.

You know, I hate writing about this. I hate describing my flaws in all their depressing glory. My childishness. My weakness. But I have to, to learn and to purge.

We had the usual to-ing and fro-ing. Him trying to get me to speak, me refusing. He lay on the put-up bed on the floor and I stood at the foot of it, my arms crossed protectively around my body. I must have looked pathetic.

Eventually, too tired to fight any longer, I sat on the sofa. He stood and sat next to me. Now, the following day, I realise how close he sat to me but at the time I was oblivious, so wrapped up in my own woe.

Gently, gently, he questioned me.

I told him that I was sad because I had accepted the truth. That he didn’t feel the same as I did. I told him I knew he loved me and cared for me but that it wasn’t same.

He asked how I felt then. I told him I was completely in love with him and I accepted that his love was not the same as mine.

He asked how did I know that? Who had told me that? I said he had. I had asked him how he felt and he couldn’t tell me. I wanted to know about our future, if he wanted to be with me, if he was happy with me. If he was glad I had come. If we were serious. And he couldn’t or wouldn’t tell me. In my eyes, that only meant something bad.

He told me I was crazy – “you are here now, with my family”. How did I know he didn’t love me the same? I told him I tried to be a good girlfriend but I couldn’t make him love me more. He replied that I was a good girlfriend and I knew he loved me.

In an anxious state, I can’t look at the person I’m upset with. I was staring ahead, or at my hands that were wringing. He kept pulling my hands apart and placing them down away from each other. If I started to claw at my pyjamas, he would put a hand on top to stop me. He told me to look at him, that I must look at him when we are talking. But when I looked at him, I just felt overwhelming love. I wanted to drown in him, and kiss him, and float away on my dreams of our life together.

His eyes were kind, smiling almost. He held me, and whispered in my ear that he loved me and he wanted to be with me.

He genuinely couldn’t understand why I felt this way. I tried to explain. I told him that I didn’t trust my own judgement of how he felt and that I needed to be told. I told him that I knew his ex-girlfriends had loved him and that he had been happy with them for a while but I was scared he wouldn’t want a future with me like he didn’t with them. I said I wanted to be different.

He told me I was different – I was here now, they weren’t. I was here with him and his family- they weren’t. He said how he had driven three hours to take me to the beach, just to make me happy. He told me again and again, “you know I love you”.

Eventually, we parted. He took me to my room and kissed me again and again. And laughed and called me crazy. He made me promise I wasn’t going to cry again. I promised, and I didn’t.

This morning he came to me and we made love. And that is how it feels now – our bodies now familiar, the adrenalin of time apart ebbing away – now is just love and pleasure.

I have two and a half days left. I’m determined to be bright and cheerful and to try to not worry. This morning I hate myself for my errant thoughts, my fears and my doubts and my crying. I can’t do anything else now. I have told him and showed him how I feel. I can do no more. So I must enjoy my last days with him and pray that what is meant to be, will be and hope that actually what is happening is this…

I hope that in typical male/female fashion, he loves me but can’t tell me. And that I love him and I can’t stop telling him and that is the only problem between us.

To my love,

I know I’ve been different these last few weeks. Probably months. We have both been through some tough times, haven’t we?

I can not tell you how many times I have wished to be alongside you through your dark days, supporting you. I hope you have felt that I have tried, despite being so far away.

And you, you have a way of talking sense, even though you don’t always fully understand my situation. You make me laugh, show great patience. I hope you know how much I appreciate that.

You have said from the beginning that this relationship would be hard. Long distance relationships are by nature. The time apart is hard, and all the heightened emotions that come with that. And then, for us, there are cultural differences which are not so much a problem for me and you but are for others – our governements included.

And then…covid. Covid has kept us apart for over a year now. So what was always going to be a challenging situation is now even more difficult. The building hope of a visit and the devastation of another cancelled trip. Not knowing when we can be together. Not knowing where this relationship is going – it is on pause, almost.

I wouldn’t change my time with you though. I would rather have this than anything or anyone else. Our time has created a love so deep, so powerful that we have survived life’s ups and downs and are thriving through Covid’s restrictions.

Ironically though, for me, a love like that comes with a fear of losing it. Our relationship is so precious to me and I am so grateful that I have found it that I am perpetually scared it will be taken away from me.

No doubt, some of this comes from how I feel about myself and my confidence. You are so wonderful, that I can’t help but think that you deserve more. Someone more beautiful, someone younger. I can’t understand what you see in me, perhaps. In turn, this fear and low self worth means that at times I act in a way which could jeopardise what we have. I doubt and question and test. I need constant reassurance that this is real, my love is returned equally. That you feel the same…you still want me.

Time should have proved that to me, I know that. But time has a sneaky way of adding to those fears too. After 18 months of daily contact, albeit online, it is not surprising that we have fallen into an easy life together. The honeymoon period over, perhaps. I crave the look of desire you once gave me, the times you told me I looked beautiful. Even the times you asked if I loved you, missed you…

It is a normal part of every relationship, I know that. What makes it harder for us – well, me – is that the distance means I don’t have the other parts. The cuddles and kisses. Holding hands. Sitting together, thighs touching. You stroking my hair or putting your hand on my back to guide me as we walk. The knowing smile and look in your eyes as we gazed at each other over dinner, a reminder of the love we had just made or the promise of what was happen next when we were alone. All things that I loved in that one week we were together.

The distance makes me need this more. My insecurity and fear makes me crave this more. The time apart and the difficulties we have individually faced make this essential for me.

I know you love me. I know it in your actions and how you tell me every day. I know you miss and want me in how many times you call and your perseverance in this relationship. And yet, at times, I crave more. I can’t have the physical so I need need words – out loud, spelled out. I know that’s not fair to expect from you. It is not like you don’t say it. And you shouldn’t have to say it more just to appease me.

As time has gone on, and disappointment and missed time together (covid, grrrr) has plagued our relationship, I’ve found that I am scared to dream of our future. I once pictured you here. I dreamed a life for us. Now, it seems too much to hope.

We have talked about it enough for me to know you are waiting until we are.physically together to talk everything through and make decisions. I respect you for that, don’t disagree with your plan. This is the rest of our lives and there is a lot to discuss. It is absolutely right that this should be in person after spending more physical time together.

But the anticipation is killing me. The not knowing, the questioning and guessing and wondering… all not-good for an insecure overthinker like me. And as time goes on, I fear that I will do something to make you not want me anymore. Or that someone better or easier will take you from me.

And to see others reunited…getting married…that is hard. I want so much for that to be us. To know that you want that, me, as much as I want you. To know the difficult beginning is just that, just the start of something wonderful.

I want a life with you. I want to give you a good life. Be there when you need me. I want the excitement of building a life together, you and me, making the best of this world. You inspire me to be better and I want the same for you.

I love you so much. I’m so grateful you are in my life. And I’m sorry for my fears and how they sometimes taint the good that we have.

Don’t give up on me baby.

Fight

I’m exhausted but I keep going to bed.

I’m medicated but I am still sad.

I’m fighting and I’m losing.

Well, it is more like a stalemate. At times, anxiety is completely kicking my ass. But the fact that I am trying…well, that has to account for something.

So, what is my battle plan?

  • I’m getting up and following my face and make up routine. Even though I didn’t want to.
  • I’m still showering (I didn’t last time.)
  • I’m keeping in touch with people better (not hiding away yet).
  • I’m looking for jobs.
  • I’ve applied for a job.
  • I’ve planned a business
  • I’ve bought a domain name.
  • I’m doing some housework each day.
  • I’ve started a course and enrolled on another.
  • I’m trying to get out the house each day.
  • I’ve bought and am reading a self help book.
  • I’ve completed a financial review.

Anxiety’s counter attack:

  • Tight chest and panic attacks
  • Can’t sleep at night
  • Wake multiple times in the night
  • Constantly thinking about what has happened and my predicament
  • Keep finding myself in bed.
  • Don’t want to get up in the morning.
  • Doubting everything.
  • Worried – even more – about my relationship
  • Can’t trust people
  • I want to be alone
  • I feel scared – a lot.
  • My eating habits are bizarre.
  • Sometimes I just …sit.
  • I could do more on my business but I can’t.
  • I could apply for more jobs, but I can’t
  • I keep crying.
  • I probably need to take the increased medication I have been given but I haven’t yet.

And that’s it. That’s my daily battle, minute by minute.

Me, trying to make myself carry on and do things and be proactive.

Anxiety, making me tired and paranoid and crushing my chest like a vice.

My sick note runs out on Tuesday. I know I can’t go back. I know I need to use this time wisely. I just need to win the battle first.

Kick

Wednesday was a day of promise and productivity. Thursday was a slump day that slid into a morose Friday.

I’ve bought a book from my favourite motivation speaker, Mel Robbins. I couldn’t read it. I’ve still got my online interview to complete and two courses to start. I did neither.

Instead, I meandered around the house, aimlessly trying to find motivation only to somehow find myself back in bed. My settlement letter finally arrived – recorded delivery, so they didn’t need to keep calling to ask if it had arrived.

My cat walked in dripping with blood from an unknown source. A £220 trip to the vet later and we are still hoping he will be ok.

I had two missed calls from an unknown mobile number. No messages left. That had me in an anxious state for hours until they called back and it was Occupational Health organising a meeting.

And whilst the celebration of Eid means my gorgeous boyfriend is less hangry and tired, three days of family time means reduced time for me. He still called and text regularly and told me he loved me and missed me, but calls were short. I know I am being completely selfish here. I just really needed him and wanted him.

My sister chose this week to have another argument about him. Whilst inunderstand her caution and wariness, the only arguments she has for me not being with him are:

His nationality

Her disbelief in long distance relationships.

Hardly concrete arguments. I said she is prejudiced and negative and whilst I understand her concern, she doesn’t need to bring it up all the time and be critical without just cause. Apparently because she loves me and has known me the longest, I should listen to her. I do, I just don’t need to hear it all the time. Or see the look on her face.

My other sister, whilst generally supportive and stuck in the middle, is going through her own crisis at the moment. Covid has delayed her nursing career starting (ironic, I know). She is anxious, paranoid and is arguing with her husband. She doesn’t listen and she doesn’t let things go. She is also constantly needing financial help – fine, when I have the money, but I don’t know how long I will have it for.

So, in summary: I’m feeling very, very sorry for myself. I feel like I am kicked from all angles.

And then…

Last night, my ex came by my house to pick up my daughter and to collect various items as it was his turn to have the children.

My beautiful boy: my ADHD, autistic 14 year old was in despair. He wouldn’t speak. He didn’t want to leave. He started crying, hyperventilating. Finally, finally, after a big hug he opened up.

He hates seeing me sad. He is worried about me being alone. He is scared that I am going to commit suicide.

And that, friends, was the biggest kick up the backside, slap in the face, reality check I needed.

How I handle this situation is going to affect my children. In a way, this could teach them the power of resilience and positive thinking.

Or, I could continue to feel sorry for myself and let them suffer as they watch me indulgence self pity.

So, this morning, I have got up: washed, dressed, applied make up. I’ve planned my meals for the week. I’m now going to start some housework. This weekend I will get the house in order. Monday, I am going to get my career sorted. Or start to.

I’m going to have bad days. That’s normal. My kids need to see that too. But they need to see that giving up is not an option, and the strong mother they have known is still there.