Tag Archives: broken heart

Ramblings of a single thirtysomething

16 Aug

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Apologies in advance that this post is as grumbly as an angry bear. Apologies also that it doesn’t really come to a point. But if you want to read on, I thank you in advance.

I’ve been feeling pretty down this week. I don’t like being a miserable cat, and so I find myself asking, “Why? Why? Why must I be on a downer in this beautiful month of August?”

In fact, there are many reasons:

  • I had a three-day migraine that made me want to rip my own head off. And beat it with a stick. 
  • The run-up to the migraine made me tired and moody.
  • I received surprising smear test results.
  • I had too much work to do, too little time, and lost an entire day to the aforementioned migraine.
  • Oh, and I got my period. Awesome.

My ex has been on my mind too. I don’t know why. Maybe my brain is doing its whole going-back-in-time thing. Last year this weekend was my best friend’s hen party in Scotland. Two weeks after the pizza of doom. I went. I organised, in fact. I dressed up and cooked food and made cocktails and danced and drank. On the second day we went to Go Ape (a massive obstacle course in the trees in a national park). I literally threw myself into it. I remember thinking, “Oh well, no big deal if I die.” And after Go Ape I came over all shaky, left the cabins we were staying at and drove 40 minutes to my parents’ house where they ran me a bath, made me ginger tea, and put on a DVD of Modern Family. No questions asked.

Yes, I’ve come a long way since then. In no small part thanks to the cast of Modern Family. But I find myself a year on wondering what I have to look forward to.

I was out for dinner on Tuesday night with a group of friends who range in age from 24 to 35. Everyone except me in relationships. Two of them married. One planning a wedding. They were all talking about their plans for the immediate future – weddings, babies, holidays. I found myself zoning out. (In part because migraine aura had set in, admittedly. Also I was terribly busy eating olives.)

So, when I started to tell them about my most recent trip to the psychic and they had the audacity to suggest she might not be right(!), I lost my sh**. I’m not an idiot. I know the psychic might not be right. But I don’t have a wedding or a baby or even some mediocre sex in my immediate future. I need someone to tell me that stuff is going to happen. Maybe it will. Maybe it won’t. But I need someone to let me look forward to it.

I definitely feel like I have things together. I even spent today fixing my own shower (how’s that for a powerful, independent woman?). And of course there are things to look forward to. I’m going to Florida in 12 weeks. I’m going up to Edinburgh in October. I have some fun things on at work. I have five days off work starting this coming Thursday.

I guess I just thought things would be, well, different by now. That I wouldn’t be spending Saturday night watching Modern Family and drinking Diet Coke.

And that I wouldn’t think about him. Or, at least, wouldn’t care.

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Renovations

10 Aug

It’s all been happening here at April Towers.

Everyone tells you to redecorate after a break up. I wanted to. Oh, I really wanted to last August. But since I was incapable of standing for longer than twenty minutes or so, it made DIY a little tricky. Where do you find the wherewithall to pick wallpaper when you erupt into tears while trying to choose a shampoo?

A year later, I can do it. Top of my list is replacing my carpet. For regular readers – yes – the same carpet that he trod paint into.

But it struck me that Pizza of Doom itself also needs a little spruce up. After all, times have changed. I’m a year on. And while I’ll admit that I cried a lot this afternoon, I’m changed for the better and stronger than I’ve ever been.

So I’ve rewritten my ‘About’ section to keep up-to-date. Like Grey’s Anatomy, I hope that Season One was just the foundations for what is going to be an increasingly exciting, heart-warming and fascinating tale. Minus the bombs and planecrashes and all.

I think I had to change on the inside before I could change on the outside. Today I even considered a new haircut. But, let’s not get crazy. My hair is already fabulous.

 

Once year since the break up (and happy birthday, Liz)

3 Aug

Today is the doomaversary. It was the night of the 3rd of August last year that everything fell apart.

I’ve been thinking long and hard about what to do to mark today. In truth, I know it’s just another day. It isn’t going to tangibly change things. But, for me, it’s very meaningful. It feels like crossing the finish line. I officially got through the worst year of my life. And I’m coming out smiling. Yay me.

I asked you all a few weeks ago what I should do to mark the occasion. Obviously pizza had to be involved, and tonight some friends are coming over to eat pizza with me. Homemade pizza, because it’s better than the takeaway stuff he was obsessed with anyway. But what else what else?

One of my dearest blogger buddies recommended that I think of today as her birthday rather than the doomaversary. So, happy birthday, Liz. I hope you enjoy the title of this post. You, my friend, are a perfect example of one of the loveliest things to have come out of this whole mess of a year: new friends.

Another terribly clever blogger buddy (who I can always rely on to call my ex the ass that he is), suggested that I write him a letter telling him how far I’ve come, and post it on here.

I straight up loved this idea. But when I sat down to write it, hmmmmm, I found I had nothing to say to him. Nothing at all.

And, you know what? I love that feeling.

So, let’s focus on something and someone more important: let’s focus on me.

I cried a little this morning. Not because I missed him, but because I remembered how horrifically sad I felt last year. I went over the evening of August 3rd 2013 in my head and it made me want to go back in time and give myself a big hug and lots of reassurance. So that’s what I’m going to do.

Instead of a letter to him, this is a letter to the April of August 3rd last year.

 

Dear April on the 3rd of August, 2013, just after 9.30pm

Sit on the floor. Put your head between your legs. Try to stop the room spinning. It will stop eventually, and you will get your breath back. I know it’s scary, but this is your body dealing with trauma in its own way. And you’re supposed to feel this way: the man you thought you were going to marry just broke your heart.

You’ve never felt like this before. You can’t make sense of it. And for the next two days you aren’t going to sleep at all as you go over and over and over and over what’s just happened. You’re going to tell yourself that it will never feel as bad as it does in this moment. Unfortunately, that’s not quite true. Right now you’re in shock. When that wears off, the confusion will kick in, then the sadness. I hate to tell you, but you’re going to feel sad for a very long time. You’re not going to sleep properly for a very long time. Go to the doctor. He can help.

At your worst, you’ll wish not to wake up in the morning. You’ll stand on train platforms wondering what would happen if you just stepped forward. Months from now you’ll come to a plateau where these thoughts stop, but you have no idea why you’re alive, or why you would want to be. Because life has no meaning when you’re alone. And if he didn’t want you, well, doesn’t that mean you’re worthless?

You’re not worthless. You help people. You care for people. You make people smile, and there are people who love you. He says that he never did. But your parents do. And your best friends do. And that doesn’t make you pathetic. Because the people who know you best see the good in you. He was blind. And a c***.

Five weeks from now you’re going to start your new job. Two days before, he’ll call you. Because it would be beyond him to realise what bad timing this is. It’s going to be tough. Prepare to hate this job for the first few months. Your confidence just hit rock bottom. How are you supposed to concentrate? But be kind to yourself. Because a year from now you’ll look back and feel proud of how you stuck this job out. In fact, it’s going to rank right up there with your greatest achievements, just the fact that you got out of bed every day and made it to the office. You’ll have been to Boston, New York and Paris with work. And you’ll be planning a trip to Belgium. You’ll have made new friends. It’s a challenge, but if anyone can deal with that, you can.

Christmas will suck. Just saying.

Do what you know how to do. Find your therapy in your writing. Start a blog. You’ll find friends in the strangest of places. You’ll build your support network. And when it comes to support, the bigger the better. You can try new things too. You don’t know it yet, but you really love yoga.

You’re not going to fall in love again in a hurry. For a long time the very thought of someone else is going to make you feel physically sick. But there will be other guys. To date. To kiss. Someone will come along and have the best sex of your life with you. He’s not boyfriend material, but he’s going to turn out to be a good friend. Trust him. He’s odd, but he means well.

If there’s one thing I want you to know right now, it’s that it will be OK. But not for a long time. So don’t panic if you’re still crying months for now. You were madly in love. Take comfort from the fact that your feelings were real. You know what love is. And you need to grieve to move on.

Next spring the darkness will lift. In the sun of next summer, you’ll plan a new future. You’ll get involved in new activities and realise all the new people who have come into your life.

I can’t tell you if this will ever stop hurting. I can’t tell you what’s going to happen to you. I can tell you that opportunities will come your way. And that maybe not knowing what the future holds is more exciting than a future with a man who never loved you, anyway. I can tell you that you’re too good for that.

And, I promise, you will eat pizza again.

Lots of love,

April on the 3rd of August 2014, just after 3.30pm

 

 

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.