Archive | August, 2013

Goodbye, August. You’ve been horrible.

31 Aug

Tomorrow is September. Well, good riddance to August 2013 which has been , without doubt, the worst month of my entire life. Not only did my boyfriend get back from New York and break up with me, I had a bladder infection, my final project in my last job ended up a disaster, and ants moved into my coffee machine (true story).

Still, I’m trying to be positive. I’m looking for the meaning. So here are five (very important) things I learned this month.

1. This is what heartbreak feels like
I’ve broken up before. I’ve been dumped before. But I have never felt like this in my life. Thinking back to those first few days when I was unable to do anything, I hate that anyone has to go through this. Ever. I remember flying up to Scotland the day after it happened, wishing that the plane would just drop out of the sky. There isn’t a day I haven’t cried since the 2nd of August. I think it’s safe to say I have now experienced true heartbreak. Oh, and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.

2. Trust your guts
I knew something wasn’t right with my ex, but he kept telling me he was just stressed at work. And from the start of our relationship he’d warned me that the summer would be stressful. Well, don’t I feel like an almighty fool for sending him chirpy, supportive emails with pictures of cats in comical poses? Don’t I feel like a mug for making him a Japanese-themed care package to take to New York? Don’t I wish I hadn’t welcomed him back with homemade cupcakes? He was miserable because he did not want to be with me. Fact. More fool me.

3. You know who your friends are
My friends have been incredible. I have a friend who texts me every day to “check in”. I have others who have had me around for lunch, or sent me flowers, or answered multiple “do you think?” emails during the working day, or made sure I have something to do on a Friday night. I’ll be honest, there are a few who I feel have been unsympathetic and haven’t really cared. But good to know who’s who on the friend scale. And, hey, I’ve also made a whole bunch of blog buddies who are some of the most supportive, lovely ladies I’ve ever come across.

4. Whatever your age, nobody looks after you like your Mum and Dad do
I can’t imagine what went through my poor parents’ heads when I phoned them sobbing and asking to come home. They have been amazingly tactful, supportive and kind. It makes me cry that they’ve had to see me cry so much. They are the coolest old people I know. Hands down.

5. Pull yourself together on the outside, and it helps on the inside
Wednesday was the first time I wore makeup since it happened. I’ve been living in glorified pyjamas. The first couple of weeks I showed up, more than once, at work with an item of clothing inside out. Today I got a mani pedi. I’ve reintroduced makeup. I’ve even taken to wearing clothes without elasticated waistbands (sometimes). It’s not going to change my life in a big way, but it helps. And my skin looks amazing after its detox.

So here goes. I’m shutting the door on August, four weeks to the day since the pizza of doom. I want to keep looking forward. I really do. But, if I’m honest, even after these lessons learned, I just don’t want it to be over. And I can’t help feeling if I could just go back to July I could change it all. 

Let’s hope September gives me a reason to stay in drive-mode.

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I miss

31 Aug

I miss Friday nights.
I miss Pizza Tuesdays.
I miss Saturday mornings in each other’s arms.
I miss drinking cocktails.
I miss falling asleep with our feet touching.
I miss spooning.
I miss his friends.
I miss his family.
I miss our walks in Victoria Park.
I miss Broadway Market for olives and sourdough.
I miss his smell.
I miss kissing.
I miss that damn tattoo.
I miss chicken on toast, with the good mayo.
I miss checking out street art.
I miss listening to him play the ukulele.
I miss playing on the kids’ obstacle course in the park.
I miss brushing our teeth together.
I miss laughing.
I miss my best friend.
I miss everything.

I love Taylor Swift (Part 1)

30 Aug

How does she know what is in my brain?

Sweating it out

30 Aug

In school I wasn’t the kid who got picked last in gym. But I was the kid who got picked third from last. Sports were just never my thing. As an adult, though, I’ve realised you don’t need to be on the hockey A team to enjoy a bit of exercise. I run, I go to the gym, and I work out with a personal trainer once a week doing boxing and general fitness.

These past four weeks, my PT sessions have really helped me. My trainer pushes me. I sweat a lot. But the squats, burpees (ugh) and press ups are interspersed with trash talking my ex. It gets me all riled up and ready to box. I think I’ve been pushing myself harder than ever since the pizza of doom. In a way, physical pain or discomfort just doesn’t bother me anymore. I’m unafraid because nothing could hurt as much as this break up.

This morning we did a 90-minute session. 90. Minutes. Dear. God. I thought I was going to puke more than once. But it’s quite incredible how good boxing feels when you are full of anger and frustration. (No prizes for guessing who’s head I picture.)

Now, back in my flat, showered, coffee in hand, I feel amazing. In fact, I’m watching ‘Say Yes To The Dress’. And I am not crying.

I know the science; exercise releases endorphins. But I believe there’s something else going on here. I feel in control. I feel confident. I feel strong. 

To my break up buddies out there, find a boxing class and start sweating out all that negative energy. The release is so relaxing. Plus, it’s good to know you can throw a mean jab, jab, cross.

Am I a terrible friend?

29 Aug

One of my best friends is getting married in two weeks. I’m a bridesmaid. When she asked me to be her bridesmaid I was so excited I could hardly sleep. We’ve been friends since university, we used to live together, I really like her fiancé. I am happy for her. Of course I am.

But whenever I think about this wedding I start crying.

It’s not because I fear I’ll never get married. It’s because my ex was supposed to be there. Instead, I have two first-class train tickets to myself, and a lovely, big room in the nicest hotel in Edinburgh. To myself.

I hate going to weddings alone.

The hen party was two weeks ago. I found it really tough.

And on top of feeling bad because I’m sad, I feel guilty for being sad.

Today I went to get some spanx for under my dress and some shoes to match the dress. I ended up crying, feeling dizzy, and wandering around with the craziest craving for sushi (no sushi in sight). Then another customer (a large customer, I hasten to add) literally fell into a shop that I was leaving and punched me in the stomach in the process. It sounds unlikely, I know. But this actually happened.

The good news is that The Body Shop had 40% off and I bought every coconut-themed product that they make. I love coconut. My ex used to call me his “tropical princess”.

I hate that even coconut reminds me of him.

I’m mad at myself for still being so upset about this.

I’m angry that I miss him so much.

Also I really despise the Phones4U ads about how “breaking up doesn’t have to be hard”. Assholes.

I need this to stop hurting. Ideally in time for the wedding.

Just when you think it’s going to be OK

29 Aug

I felt good last night. I felt really hopeful about the future and excited to have 11 days off work. 

Now I feel empty.

And I also feel fat.

On being a ‘career person’

28 Aug

Ask the 16-year-old me what she wanted out of life, and career wasn’t really a priority. I wanted to do something that made me happy. But, above all, by 26 I planned to be married and starting a family. Well, I’m 31. No kids, and the guy I thought I was going to marry was, apparently, never in love with me. Guess what, though? I actually have an amazing job. I’m Creative Director of a marketing agency. I get to write, drink lots of coffee, think up ideas, boss people around, and generally pretend to be Don Draper. 

Three months ago I was offered a new job with a bigger agency. It’s a huge step up. I was nervous, but my ex helped me to believe I could do it, and that I’d be happier if I did. He seemed really impressed that this agency wanted me. And I wanted him to be proud of me.

Three months later, I’ve just finished up my notice period and have 10 days off before I start my new job. 

Of course, in the meantime, he’s gone. 

Ever since the pizza of doom I’ve been convinced that I can’t do this new job. That I needed his support. That I won’t be able to concentrate. That I’ll be even more miserable.

Well, today (ahead of my official start date) I had a management away day with some new colleagues. It was a long day and it was tough. I thought about him a lot. I cried on the train coming home. 

But I got through it. 

I met some lovely people. I got my brain working again. I kept a smile on my face throughout. And, you know what? Putting on makeup and doing my hair for the first time in nearly four weeks (and wearing something other than leggings and a T-shirt) made me feel vaguely attractive.

Tonight I don’t feel so down because I’ve actually achieved something. And even if I’d agree with the 16-year-old me that I’m going to find true happiness through relationships and family, I’m lucky to do something that makes me proud and keeps me busy.

So when I see the non-stop Facebook updates of everyone I know getting married and having babies, at least I can think, “Well, hey, none of you get to be Don Draper.”