Archive | September, 2013

So long, September

30 Sep

Another month over in just a few hours. And I’m ready for it. I love the autumn. I like coming home from work and lighting candles and putting on warm pyjamas and watching TV without feeling guilty (when it’s light and sunny outside I always feel I should be out enjoying the light and the sunniness).

Ok, so this autumn I was supposed to be moving in with him, and instead I’ve lost my boyfriend and my best friend and all those plans. But I am not a total loser. No, no. Because I’m gaining knowledge all the time.

Here is what I learned in September:

1. I’m stronger than I think
I am still of the opinion that my new job is somewhat of a disaster. But, let’s review the details. The day after the ex and I spoke on the phone, whilst still completely heartbroken, with no sleep, I started my new job. New company. New clients. New people. Big step up. No coffee machine. And I have managed to get up and go to work every day and pretend that I know what I’m doing. I have also now introduced a French press for team morning coffee. It’s not how I wanted it to be. I’m not how I wanted to be. But I’m doing it anyway. And for that reason alone, I think I’m doing OK.

2. Know when to ask for help
Week one of the new job (post telephone conversation with the ex), I really sank. I hardly slept at all. And everything got very, very dark. Honestly, I have never felt so distressed, and the hardest thing was telling my friends. The guilt of it. Ugh. People go through much worse than this. How dare I feel so terrible. Well, I did tell people. And people were incredibly supportive. Now I’m seeing a tremendous counsellor and slowly but surely a little colour is coming back.

3. If you’re still crying, it’s too soon
At one point I decided the answer was to date. I joined a dating site. I got upset that every man on there was boring/ugly/unsuccessful/not my ex. As a blogger buddy pointed out, when you’re still crying every day, it is not the time to go looking for someone else.

4. Dear God, limit the sleeping pills
A very generous doctor prescribed me some very lovely sleeping pills. At the time, they were such a gift. I was so relieved. My poor body and brain were craving rest. Badly. Turns out, these particular sleeping pills should be prescribed five-at-a-time. My doctor prescribed 28 of the bad boys. After a week of them, I had a permanent hangover. I’ve weaned myself off them with hypnosis apps and chamomile tea. I don’t sleep every night, but I feel more like me. I like me.

So tomorrow is October. Not the October I was expecting, but who knows what’s to come?

And October 1st is my Mum’s birthday. Happy Birthday to my lovely Mum. Of course, she doesn’t read my blog. She doesn’t even know I write one.

I’m pretty sure she would be horrified.


29 Sep

I don’t have much to say tonight, except that I long for a restful night’s sleep.

I’ve managed to ditch my sleeping pill habit, and I’m getting through the night without hours and hours spent awake and horribly anxious. I still always wake between three and four, but I’ve got a knack for getting back to sleep through the power of a hypnosis app on my iPhone.

The only remaining problem is the nightmares.

Last week I had a horrific nightmare where I was watching Beyoncé ice skate across a pond that I knew wasn’t frozen. I didn’t stop her. She fell through. Other nights I find myself involved in gang warfare, and often dealing with weapons or complicated organised crime deals. It’s all very stressful for someone who panics about breaking the speed limit.

Anyway, last night I dreamt about my ex’s Mum. It wasn’t a nightmare as such. She was her usual lovely self. I woke at three in a panic about it because I felt so sad. Got the hypnosis app going. Fell back asleep. And dreamt about her again.

By morning I was emotionally exhausted. I really wanted to be part of his family. His Mum was ridiculously kind to me. As much as I need to move on from him, I need to move on from his parents and brother and nieces and nephew and his lovely friends. And they really need to stop visiting me in my sleep.

So, dearest brain, if I have the choice, I’ll take another nightmare about being inadvertently involved in Beyoncé’s death over a happy dream about any of his family members. Deal?

I wanna dance with somebody

28 Sep

I had a nice day. One of my best friends is over from Australia. I drank a lot of coffee with her, which was fabulous. We caught up on everything and I got through my whole story without sobbing. Go me! I went to the gym. Did some shopping. Cleaned my kitchen. And finally settled down to the X Factor about an hour ago.

Yes, I love the X Factor. Don’t judge.

I have two favourites this year: Abi and Melanie. Tonight they both decided to break my heart a little.

I had never before realised how sad this song is. It’s really not about dancing at all. (Who knew?) It’s about loneliness.

And if that didn’t have me sobbing enough, Melanie followed up with this.

Since I find myself in my pyjamas watching X Factor on a Saturday night, it’s fair to say I’m wanting to dance with somebody. With somebody who loves me.

But the past couple of days, the sadness has cleared a little. Just a little. Just enough for me to give myself a good talking to. While, at the start of the week, I was emailing my friends to tell them that my life had no point, today I’m not even looking for a point. I don’t need one. I’m a good, kind person and I have as much right to be happy as anyone else.

My friend Kate and I were discussing this on Thursday night. It might sound melodramatic – and maybe it’s just indicative of what a nice life I’ve had – but this breakup is genuinely the worst thing that has ever happened to me.

The good news is (as Kate was quick to point out) it has to get better from here.

Sure, something like this might happen in the future. But I’ll be OK. Because I’m small but strong. I can get through this. And I will never let anyone hurt me like this again.

Wouldn’t you know it? Mel’s already sung about such things on the X. (Please excuse Gary’s lip synching.)

Waking up alone

28 Sep

I’ve always been a morning person.

One of my favourite things is getting up early on the weekends, sitting on my sofa drinking coffee and looking out the window (I have a pretty great view in London terms, i.e. I have a view). I love the feeling that most people are still sleeping and I have this little bit of London almost to myself for a couple of hours.

When I was with my ex, I spent most weekends at his house. I would wake up super early and have to entertain myself for hours. He is not a morning person. I would read, wander downstairs, watch TV, make myself coffee. He has a fabulous house. But he does not have a fabulous view.

When we were in New York, I would get up and go out on my own. Walk along Battery Park, find a deli and eat a bagel, take a stroll around Sephora. I would get back to the apartment, sure that he would be awake and wondering what had happened to me, and he would still be in bed. The TV didn’t even work properly so I couldn’t watch MTV. Disaster.

Here’s something, I have my weekend morning time back.

But what would I really prefer? I loved waking up next to him. I loved reading in bed while he snored. I loved when he would finally wake up and wrestle my book out of my hands so he could kiss me. And, yes, I loved weekend morning sex. A lot.

So here’s what I’m telling myself: one day I am going to meet someone who I want to spend the rest of my life with, and – wait for it – he will want to spend the rest of his life with me too. For thousands and thousands of mornings, I’ll be waking up with someone. Might as well make the most of these quiet hours that I get to myself now.

Coffee. Crispy, autumnal view of East London. Teen Mom 2. Not a bad way to start the day, really.

The painful progress moments

27 Sep

Friday night and I have nobody to play with. Again. I was supposed to be going to Italy with him first thing tomorrow morning. He’s going without me. This is a lot to think about, so I’m watching old seasons of Grey’s Anatomy because I don’t know what else to do with myself.

It worries me, you know? So much heartbreak at Seattle Grace Hospital and yet they are all carrying on, performing surgeries, casually sticking knives in people’s brains. In my job, I can’t concentrate enough to write nice copy or a half-decent social media strategy. If lives were in my hands. Well. They’d certainly die.

It’s a funny old end to the week. Didn’t cry yesterday. Haven’t cried yet today, but I do feel it coming. I feel more distant from my ex. I still miss him like hell. I miss my best friend. I miss my boyfriend. But I don’t feel like part of me is missing. Or, at least I don’t feel that way as intensely as I did before. 

These moments when you realise you’re making progress are so difficult to get your head around. Much as there’s relief that you don’t feel quite as horrific, there’s sadness as you grieve the relationship slipping a little further away. As I said to my counsellor the other night, I know in a year that this will just be something that happened. But that makes me sad, because that means he’ll just be something that happened. Or, as blogger buddy Intothebeauty put it, “I didn’t want to let go of the feeling of me wanting him”. That’s all I have left, after all. When it’s gone, he’s gone. 

So rather than shutting it out altogether, I’m letting my mind wander a little around this trip to Italy that I should be going on. How he was invited to a friend’s wedding there and, at first, turned down the invite because he thought I wasn’t invited and we’d already have spent so much of the summer apart. Then we realised I was invited and excitedly booked flights and hotel. I bought a dress. 

And as I write this, now I’m crying again.

I want to feel OK, but I don’t want him to disappear.

Day 55

26 Sep

It is 55 days since the pizza of doom.

It is after 10pm.

And, for the first time in 55 days, I can say that I have not cried today.

Give Me Love

25 Sep

I thought about life without love a lot the past couple of days. I’m not the only one.


This pretty much sums up my mood. I’ve had a bad day, and I wish I could sit down with a glass of wine (or the whole bottle) and just vent about it.

Where’d you go?

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I’m exhausted

25 Sep

I saw my new counsellor tonight. The moment I met her I liked her, and felt totally at ease with her. She complimented me on my cat socks. I think she’s going to be great for me.

We talked through the whole sorry story. I cried. As I do these days. And at one point she just looked at me, sympathetically but not in a patronising way, and said, “You’re completely exhausted.”

That set off the tears again.

I am so tired.

It’s not just the not sleeping, or the stress of the new job, or constantly trying to think of things to be happy about, or the hours lost to crying. It’s not flying up to Scotland to lie in bed for a week, then back to London, then Scotland for a hen party, then London, then France for a ‘feel better holiday’, then London, then Scotland for Sarah’s wedding, then London.

These things are tiring, yes. But my poor brain is still trying to compute what has actually happened. I’m still going over and over and over and over the same conversations, eight weeks on. Even when I sleep, I have nightmares about it. It’s no wonder I can’t concentrate on anything. My mind is absolutely frazzled.

Much as I’d like to not think about my ex for an hour, or even a half hour, I need to let my brain keep going because we need to work through this together. And sooner or later, we will make sense of it all. This brain came top in its class, got through law school, and has won awards for some pretty great creative work in its time. I trust it. I know we’ll get there.

In the meantime, we’ll keep getting up every morning and dragging ourselves to work. We’ll try to focus, and play around with decidedly mediocre creative ideas. And we’ll go over and over the same things we’ve gone over and over for the past eight weeks.

I thought the worst thing my brain would ever have to go through was my second-year commercial law exam. At least it only lasted three hours.

The thing that sticks

24 Sep

I’m trying herbal Nytol to avoid becoming completely addicted to the sleeping tablets that my doctor has prescribed in very generous quantities.

So far, the herbs ain’t doing much.

One thought is going round and round my head. Same thought that has stuck and hurt the most for seven and a half weeks.

He was “never completely in love” with me.

It undoes everything. All my memories come apart. It’s like a thread that you pull and a whole jumper unravels. Everything’s gone.

And I must be in some way deficient.

Because I was completely in love with him.

Grrrrrrrr I’m feeling angrrrrrrrry

24 Sep

I’m angry that your life goes on while I still love you.

I’m mad that you’ve cost me a fortune in massages, flights, therapy, and self-help books. And vodka.

I’m annoyed that you’re still going to Italy this weekend. Without me.

I’m furious that you’ve ruined pizza for me.

I’m cross about the conversation we had on the Friday night in New York when you accused me of being a bad role model.

I’m livid that you apologised the next day, when you clearly didn’t mean it.

I’m angry that I still love you while your life goes on.