Tag Archives: broken heart

You never know what’s coming

27 Jul

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Well, a year ago tonight was my last “date” with him.

We were in New York. We went to an incredible little Mexican place in the East Village and ate tacos, drank cocktails, and talked. He was talking about, “if we had a daughter”. Little did I know he was weighing up his options there and then. I remember walking home, and him telling me I looked cute as a button. I didn’t know he was saying goodbye. And when I got on a flight the next day to head home, I didn’t know that just a week later I would be on a last-minute flight to my parents’ house in Scotland, numbed with vodka. And that when I got there I’d lie in bed and cry. For four days.

Because he was never in love with me.

Today I met up with my old flatmate. We moved into a flatshare together seven years ago, and lived there for three years. A lot of sh** went down in that flat. I was the dumper and the dumpee repeatedly, while she was in a long-term relationship, then an engagement.

That engagement ended when the guy she was engaged to, well, ended it.

She’s a mum now. And – I am delighted to report – not an annoying mum in the least. In fact, probably the most chilled out mum I’ve come across. Her career is still hugely important to her. She works five days a week. She can hold a conversation without stopping mid-sentence to dramatically stage an intervention as her baby eats a leaf. I know the pain that she went through four years ago. And I think it has helped make her into the woman she is today.

She thought she had her happy ending.

I thought I had mine.

You never know what’s waiting, just a week away.

Only you

25 Jul

Someone put this on in the office this afternoon.

And I spontaneously burst into tears.

 

 

Nothing in this world will ever break my heart again

23 Jul

The morning is my thinking time.

Before my brain gets all messed up with work and conversations and ‘to do’ lists, I enjoy my journey into work, sitting on the bus daydreaming. But my mind can go to some very odd places. I don’t always even realise what it’s up to, or what I’m thinking, until the thoughts resurface later in the day.

When I got off the bus this morning I was deep in a conversation with myself. I was asking myself, “Could you go through another break up like this?”.

So, could I?

Last year in the days of torture immediately after the pizza of doom, I remember a friend telling me that I’m someone who feels extreme highs and lows (he was right about this). He told me you’ve got to feel the lows to feel the highs (true story). And then he said, “Things will get good again. You’ll feel great again. And then something like this might happen all over again and you’ll feel low. But the highs will make it worthwhile.”

Ummm. No. I looked him straight in the eye (as much as I could with tears and mascara streaming from my face) and said, “I can never feel this bad again.”

I think I was right. I think the past year has taught me all sorts of resourcefulness, but has also taught me to protect myself. And listen to alarm bells. And not fall head-over-heels-over-head-over-heels for a man with robots tattooed up his arm.

I know I will most probably experience more failed relationships in my lifetime. But when I think back to August 2013, no. No. No. No. No.

I can never feel that bad again.

I can’t.

I won’t.

Thanks to the supporting cast

22 Jul

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Summer is racing on by. Life is busy, busy, busy, busy. A little busier than I generally enjoy it to me, if honest. But – without time to even think – low and behold I am on the very verge of the doomaversary. Less than two weeks to go til I can proudly declare that it’s a full year since the man I thought I was going to marry ate half a pizza and then told me he had never been in love with me. Phew.

I have found that my brain has been doing some very odd things recently. Specifically, it has been showing me a very visual emotional slideshow of my relationship with my ex. Constantly. Kind of like being forced to watch a horror movie. Kind of sickening. Very upsetting. I guess it is the brain’s revenge for the trauma it has been through for the past fifty weeks.

But one thing I have learned from living this horrific movie is that supporting characters appear at the strangest moments – and usually when I need them most.

Like the weirdo who flirted with me in Pret last December.

The total stranger who was nice to me on eHarmony.

B.

Irish Two.

They’ve all punctuated this journey and, in their own ways, helped to move it forward.

Well, just in time for the one-year mark, there’s a new character being introduced.

My friend Francesca has been trying to set me up with a friend of hers for a very long time. As in, pretty much straight after the break up she was all ready to instigate some text message introductions. Obviously I was in no fit state. And then when she suggested it again, I was seeing Irish Two.

But last weekend in Scotland she suggested it again. And I thought, “Why not?”. He doesn’t live in London, but near enough in Kent. He seems nice. He has a job and his own teeth. Yes, why the hell not?

And I’ll tell you something else – the very fact that Francesca is so keen to make this happen makes me happy. Not all my friends have been so keen to introduce me to anyone or even see me as a normal (albeit single – shock horror) person. Honestly, being single at 32 feels like having leprosy a lot of the time.

I digress.

So it turns out this chap (we’ll call him The Set Up) is crazy busy at work for the next two weeks. As am I. So he’s going to contact me once this project he’s working on is out of the way.

In the meantime, Francesca has informed me that he’s taken a good look around my Facebook and thinks I am fit (nice to know), funny (nice to know), and have a great figure (not sure where this came from, I’m not one to post bikini pictures and – frankly – it’s simply not true).

I am fully aware that there is an extremely narrow chance of us both liking each other. Let along The Set Up turning out to be the love of my life. I’m starting to wonder if such a person even exists. But it has certainly taken my mind off the looming doomaversary.

And what girl does’t like being told she’s fit AND funny?

I needed a little confidence boost, and along it came.

Another character thrown into the mix.

And so the story moves on.

A year ago in New York

20 Jul

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Last year at this time I was with him in New York. I thought everything was OK. We were coming to the end of him working away for the summer. I felt kind of relieved, and just so damn excited for him to come home.

Of course I didn’t know that within a few hours of getting home he would break up with me.

Just writing that makes my stomach flip.

Because the time I spent in New York was obviously the final test. The final week that led him to feel completely sure: he didn’t want me.

The week that I used to leave him surprises of an ice cream variety in the freezer whenever I was out. And buy him stuff in the Penguin sale. And take photos everywhere I went of things I thought he’d like to see. The week I surprised him with tickets to Wicked. And had noisy sex on a creaky bed.

Ultimately, when I try and understand what I feel about that week is boils down to utter humiliation. With a capital H-UMILIATION. I travelled 4,000 miles to convince the person I loved that he had never been in love with me. Wow. I have such an effect on people. Go me.

It still hurts.

I’m doing so much better these days. I’m looking forward to passing the one-year mark. But I met an old friend for breakfast today, and out of my mouth plopped the words I haven’t yet been able to articulate.

“I’m scared that I’ll never be able to connect to someone else.”

How can I? A year ago in New York I thought I was kissing and hugging and sleeping with a man who loved me.

He didn’t.

Epic kissing

18 Jul

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I’m on a train to Edinburgh to go and visit my friends for the weekend. Which is lovely. But it’s the hottest day of the year in London, and as the train heads north the sky gets darker and the temperature drops. Brrrrr.

Anyway, I had a mad dash around today trying to sort out my life before getting on the train. All week I have wanted to get to a certain shop on Oxford Street to buy a certain something in the sale. All week I have been desk-bound. Oh. God. It. Has. Been. Such. A. Week.

So today at lunchtime I ran to the tube to jump on the Central Line at Chancery Lane and head along to Soho as quickly as possible.

Chancery Lane tube station always blasts my head with memories. Because every single time I go there I’m reminded of a guy I dated five years ago.

We worked together. I had liked him for ages. He was with someone else for ages. He became single. He found out I liked him. He asked me out. It was all terribly exciting.

Now, at the time I was living in east East London. More east than I do now. He was in West London. And the office we worked at was smack bang in the middle of the two. So we were constantly hopping on and off the Central Line to go and visit each other. Or kissing goodbye at Chancery Lane station, and going our separate ways.

And, oh my, the kissing was fabulous.

I’m 5ft 1. He’s 6ft 3. So we would kiss on the escalators. Then he would kiss me goodbye on the East-bound platform before he headed on to the West-bound one.

It was such a bubbly, tingly, exciting time.

Of course it all ended just three months later. I got back from a holiday and he seemed changed. He didn’t really want to hang out anymore. He ignored me even though we worked in the same office. I was uninvited to meet his parents. That was awkward.

In the end I had to make him go for a drink with me one night and tell him that I thought he was breaking up with me. He agreed (eventually, after making me walk around in the cold for about 45 minutes) and I cried and said humiliating things like, “But you like me! I can be even better! Please!”.

I then stopped eating for the best part of three months and made myself miserable pining over him before realising he was kind of an asshole and his clothes were not nice. He also stank of cigarettes. Always.

So things didn’t end that well. But I only need to set foot in Chancery Lane station to be swept back to those crispy autumn evenings, sitting in pubs drinking beer, getting to know each other, travelling endlessly back and forth on the Central Line, and the epic kissing sessions on those escalators. Mmmm.

The memories are lovely. They make me smile and feel hopeful that I’ll feel that way again about someone.

My memories of my recent ex only make me sad. Of course, we had our own epic kissing sessions, but to remember them, well, it just makes my eyes well with the tears of what might have beens.

But maybe one day I’ll pass that music shop in Hoxton, or the bus stop in Shoreditch, or that cocktail bar, that park, that coffee shop, and smile.

Maybe one day the memories of those epic kisses will stop being epic regrets.

The doomaversary is looming

13 Jul

nom-nom-pizza-cat

Apologies to all my male readers, but: DEAR GOD MY HORMONES ARE DRIVING ME CRAZY.

I’m totally wiped out. I’m struggling to think of a time I’ve felt this tired. Between work going bananas, trying to keep up with all my classes and hobbies and running, and dealing with hormonal issues, I really need to hibernate for some of the summer. Instead I can’t get through a night’s sleep without being woken in serious amounts of pain. Pain, I can deal with. Pain is pain. What is unexpected is the tears.

I haven’t cried about my ex in weeks. This morning I did.

I know I can blame my hormones and I know that this will pass, but I also think it’s to do with the time of year. My therapist has told me before that grief remembers anniversaries, dates and events. It’s like they become hardwired into our system and we have a physical reaction to them.

One of my friends has mentioned the same phenomenon to me before. After she went through an (entirely different but entirely just as traumatic) experience, she found herself breaking down in uncontrollable tears at some point in the future. When she traced timings back she realised it was a year to the day since her life had turned upside down. Weird things, our minds and bodies.

Anyway, a year ago right now I was all excited to be going out to visit him in New York while he was working there.

Little did I know that I would go to New York, and then the following week he would come home and tell me he had never been in love with me.

The pizza of doomaversary is three weeks away.

I’m determined to make it a positive door-closing, moving-on, life-affirming kind of experience. So I’ve booked an appointment with my psychic for the day before, and I’ve invited friends over on the 3rd of August for – yup, it has to be – pizza.

But I’m holding out my paws and asking for help. I’ve felt so good and so relieved the past few weeks, I really hope that once the 3rd of August is out of the way I will feel better still. So I’m open to suggestions on things to do that will help make this a positive experience. Whether it’s nice things to do for myself, therapeutic things, or even things to buy myself because – hell – I deserve it, I want to hear from you.

The doomaversary is looming.

What can I do to make sure it’s an ending and a new beginning?

The ups and downs of breakup recovery

11 Jul

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I feel a little down today.

Mainly because I am so exhausted. And so hormonal.

And, I’ll admit it, I thought a little about my ex this morning. Probably precisely because I am so exhausted and so hormonal.

But tomorrow is Saturday, which means I know I won’t be down for long.

I guess this is the next stage in this break up saga – mostly feeling fan-fricking-tastic, but occasionally getting caught a little off-guard by some sad thoughts.

I’m OK with that. It’s still a billion times better than being the April of July 2013 – blissfully happy and blissfully ignorant.

Here’s to Fridays, my blogger buddies.

Yesterday was plain awful

10 Jul

Funny crazy looking cat picture

Yesterday was stupid.

I woke up at 4.30am, and couldn’t get back to sleep. So I went for a run just after 5. I had to be in work shortly after that, but stopped to treat myself to a fruit cup and coffee from Pret.

Uh. Oh. This was where I should just have turned around and gone back to bed. The fruit was dried out and sour. The coffee had milk in it. I don’t do milk. I don’t like it. It’s makes me gag. And, on more than one occasion, vomit. What a way to ruin a coffee – and my Wednesday.

Then work began. And did not stop. It went on, and on, and on. Until around 6.30pm when I was thinking I could get ready to pack up and go home, but answered a call from the New York office. One of my team hadn’t sent their work on. The buck stops with me. And when I couldn’t get through to him on the phone, or find the files on the server, I had to redo the work.

(I should also mention that by this point in the day I had consumed at least 7,000 calories. I do not think this would have happened had I enjoyed my fruit cup that morning.)

I left work, and it was raining. I decided I needed to walk a lot to try and calm myself and get some exercise, so walked up to Islington to go to Waitrose and buy some pumpkin ravioli. At the back of my head, I kept thinking I would not have time to digest said ravioli before bed, but I wanted it so much.

Cue a mini meltdown in Waitrose when every single person on the tills decided to just stop and chat to their customers for a good ten minutes rather than actually serve anyone else. Cue customers behind me hassling me to hassle the checkout staff. It was all very stressful.

And then there were no buses.

I got in the door to my flat, anxious to get this pumpkin ravioli cooking ASAP. And the phone rang. It was my Dad.

“Dad, I literally just got in the door.”

By this point it is past 9pm.

And he talks, and talks, and talks. Mainly about the weather.

I got kind of snippy. Then made my ravioli, ate it in a rush, and then called him back to apologise for being a grump, at which point my Mum wanted to talk.

I stuffed myself with more chocolate.

DID I MENTION HOW HORMONAL I AM RIGHT NOW?

And went to bed.

It was a stupid day.

But what I really wanted to tell you all is that I did not cry. I got angry with a few people, but I did not end up locked in a cubicle at work trying to calm down. And I didn’t wish that I was coming home to someone to tell about my day and cuddle and love.

I was, in fact, 100% delighted when I put down the phone to my parents, turned on the TV, and had a good hour to myself before falling asleep.

This, my friends, is progress.

Does true love even exist?

6 Jul

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I watched a particularly intense episode of 90210 this morning. Spoiler alert – it was episode 23 from back in season four. If you don’t watch the show, don’t worry. I can explain what was going down fairly succinctly: Naomi fell head-over-Louboutin-heels for a rich dude going by the name of PJ. In the space of three or four days, they got engaged. Then she discovered he was only in a rush to get married because otherwise he would lose his trust fund (that bastard). Props to Naomi, she walked away. But it hit her hard. At one point she throws her perfectly manicured hands up in the air and declares that love doesn’t exist. It isn’t real. It’s all fake.

I know how she felt in that moment. The same thought has dominated my head and my heart for most of the past year.

Yet, though I felt blindsided and Catfished and a number of other horrible things by my ex, I could see what looked like love all around me. In my friends’ relationships. In my parents’ relationship. In my sister’s. In the guys I work with shopping painstakingly for the perfect birthday gifts for their wives and girlfriends. Not to mention all those little gems of love that we all witness every day – couples holding each other close as they walk home, or kissing each other goodbye at the bus stop in the morning.

For a long time I believed that all those relationships were fake too.

I felt quite smug about it. I knew better than these stupid, happy morons. Love is, after all, just a big fat pack of lies fed to us by that damn double H of manipulation (Hollywood and Hallmark).

Now that the mist of sadness is finally clearing, and my hope for the future is starting to kick in, I can see things differently.

Yes, what I had was fake. That’s a tough pill to swallow, but I have accepted it even if it still feels like it’s stuck in my throat and possibly going to choke me to death. If what he told me in the end is true, then everything that my ex told me up to that point was bullsh**. Like lines he had memorised. The things you are supposed to say when you’re in love. It boils down to this: every time that he told me he loved me, he didn’t. Thump. That’s a punch to the stomach of disappointment wrapped in humiliation.

But, yes, I’m no longer ashamed to say it. What I had was fake.

That doesn’t, however, mean that all relationships are.

In fact, I’m starting to think it’s much like shopping for a designer handbag. If you know what you’re looking for, you can spot the difference between a Mulberry and a fake. Sometimes it might be glaringly obvious. But sometimes it might look, feel and even smell like a Mulberry. However, the trained eye will know to look for that particular stitch on the lining, or the letter that can be found under the ‘Made in’ label on the inside. The trained eye knows a fake, and knows when it has found the real thing. Because the trained eye has seen the good, the bad, and the heinously ugly before. It’s a question of experience.

Experience is something I now have.

I’ve learned from the pizza of doom. I’ve learned to recognise the warning signs. I’ve learned that if something feels too good to be true, then it probably is. And while it had the potential to turn me into a cynical old hag who shies away from others and festers away eating meals for one and bitching about the price of them, it didn’t. Because I’m using what I’ve learned to train my heart. Which means it was a worthwhile experience, if only because it was an education.

I’m not looking for something that doesn’t exist. In fact, I’ve developed the skills to find it.