Tag Archives: life

A different take on the same old problem

28 Sep

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Sometimes I feel so lonely I could die.

I’ve had a run of weekends recently when none of my friends were about. This is perhaps the fourth weekend in a row that I’ve spent swimming, going to yoga, and watching TV. This weekend I decided to start watching ‘Sex and the City’ from the beginning. There is no better therapy. So much of it rings so true. And it makes me feel OK to admit certain things to myself. Like the loneliness. The fear of dying alone. The resentment of smug couples and yummy mummies.

It hit me somewhere between Season 1 and Season 2 that – although I want to meet someone – what I’m really missing right now is, well, more friends. I don’t want to paint myself as a total loser. I do have friends. But a combination of factors means most of them don’t live in London. Or, don’t live in London anymore. Work is super sociable. During the week I’m surrounded by colleagues who I genuinely consider to be friends. But the weekends. Ugh. There’s nobody, unless I jump on a train to Scotland (which I’ve been doing more and more of this past year).

So maybe what I want isn’t necessarily a boyfriend.

I watch ‘Sex and the City’ and I’m so envious of that group of women with each other to turn to. That’s another thing – most of my friends in London are men. They’re fun. They’re great company. But it’s not the same as having a group of girlfriends.

So what do I do?

There’s no way I’m ever moving back to Scotland. But maybe I need to hit “Restart” on my social life.

I have tried this past year. I started yoga to try and meet new people. I didn’t meet anyone, but I discovered I love yoga. Maybe language classes would be more sociable? So I started Italian, but three classes in I couldn’t keep up with the homework and had to forget it.

If only there was a Tinder for making new friends. I have no idea how at the age of 32, settled with a flat and a career and ready-made life I go about creating a new social circle. Any ideas?

Because more and more I’m feeling like I need to prioritise. And as much as I want someone to go through life with, and marriage, and kids, and happily ever after, I also want someone to call after I’ve been on dates, and talk to before them, and visit Topshop with, and bitch about work over coffee, and eat pizza and watch DVDs.

I actually have a date this afternoon. I almost forgot.

What we’re all really looking for

31 Aug

Well, buddies, I haven’t posted in days. I even missed my next ‘Friday with Friends’ slot, despite having a great post from my blogger buddy Liz. You’ll have to wait for next Friday for it. Sorry for the delay.

I’ve been busy, you see. Busy at work. Busy in general. And in Scotland all weekend. I came up for a friend’s 30th birthday party and also managed to catch up with a few other friends, and spend some time with my parents. Now, I’m on the train back to London. Somehow I’ve managed to book myself onto the train that stops pretty much at every station on the way down the country. It was supposed to take six hours. We’re running late. Which gives me a lot of time to think. 

This weekend and saw and heard of several people who recently went through bad break ups who have now met new lovely people. I’m happy for them. It makes me feel glad inside. Genuinely. And it gives me hope that karma and fairness and all that other stuff is out there in the world ensuring that people get what they deserve. However, that also makes me question whether karma forgot me. 

It’s been nearly 13 months since the pizza of doom. I haven’t been single for this long since I was 24. And it’s not just that I haven’t met anyone, it’s that I have absolutely no idea how I would ever meet someone, and no faith that my heart is going to kick back into action. Which, in turn, leaves me wondering if there’s something wrong with me. How do I get my heart to move on? Sure there have been flutters over the past 13 months. Irish Two made me flutter a little when we first met. A friend I had connected with through this very blog gave me a few little flutters. But Irish Two has no capacity for emotion. And that friend, well, he pretty much ignores me these days. All of which reinforces my heart feeling more bruised than anything. 

I think I deserve for something nice to happen. 

And I fully appreciate that many of you reading this are probably thinking, “You silly girl, pull yourself together! Move on! You have a good life and great stuff going on!”. 

Sure, I know I do. 

But we all know that lovely feeling of sunshine moving through you when you meet someone new. Waking up feeling joyful. Going to bed feeling loved. 

I love yoga and swimming, but they are no replacement for having someone’s arms around you, and looking forward to adventures together.

If longing for that makes me a bad person or selfish or ungrateful for everything that I have then I think we are all bad people and selfish and ungrateful. Because I’ve seen in people’s faces this weekend how a new relationship can change them and bring them back to themselves.

And I think, deep down, we all want that.  

 

Thanks again, Facebook

18 Aug

I woke up at 3 am.

I’ve been sleeping great recently, so this was unexpected. I tossed. I turned. And finally I decided to check my emails. I don’t know what I was expecting. All I got was a bunch of junk from LivingSocial. 

So I checked my Facebook. 

First news story: someone from school had a baby! Second baby, I might add.

Second news story: someone from school got married. 

Third news story: someone from school is on a dream holiday across the US with their gorgeous fiancé. 

F***. Off. 

I want to feel wanted

17 Aug

Irish Two and I went out on Friday night. As friends. Which is what we are these days. It’s actually nearly six months since we decided we were destined to be friends and stopped trying to be anything more. And stopped having sex. Sigh.

I don’t regret that we ended things. There are oh-so-many reasons that Irish Two is not right for me. Not least, he’s a sociopath. But when he started telling me about girls he’s been dating/having sex with, I felt a strange urge to scratch his face. 

Tinder has been good to him, delivering all manner of women who want to send him sexual pictures and meet up for sexual times. No big deal. He’s a dude. I get it. 

But then he told me, “I thought I’d met a nice girl.”

Emmm. Hello. You told me we weren’t compatible because I’m “too nice” and that you “didn’t want someone who’s nice to you.” Now you want a nice girl?

I told him this while knocking back a Negroni and trying to conceal my anger. 

I don’t want to be with Irish Two. But I don’t like feeling rejected. 

At least he had the good sense and sensitivity to say, “Sorry, do you not want to hear about this stuff?” Also, the “nice girl” he thought he had found then sent him a load of naked pictures and told him she’s sleeping with four different guys and doesn’t want a relationship.

I told him I don’t mind hearing tales of his dating mishaps. I guess the more I know about what he’s doing with other people the more it cements our relationship as “just good friends” which is all it can ever be. I need to be with someone who appreciates me for being nice. He is not that guy.

But why is it that when I know every reason we shouldn’t be together, I still want him to want me? Because I think that’s really what it boils down to. I want to feel wanted. I want to feel like someone of the male variety can look at me and think, “Wow, she’s so pretty and smart and funny and lovely. I want to have sex with her and also hold her hand and stroke her face and be with her forever.”

That’s what I thought my ex was thinking the whole time we were together. That’s what he told me he was thinking. But, as it happens, he just said those things. 

I have a date on Tuesday night with a dude from the eHarmony. 

At least I’m trying. 

 

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.

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.

Be right back

16 Jul

I haven’t been posting this week because this week has been like this:

Work.

Work.

Work.

Argue with people at work.

Work.

Work.

Migraine.

Work.

Migraine’s still there.

Work.

Migraine ain’t giving up.

Work.

I would like to extend a big “Thank you” to the person who has been sending me lovely text messages to keep me sane while I cry into my coffee (well, I’ve had to switch to green tea now on account of all the migraining).

Normal service will resume shortly here on the pizza of doom.

Green tea is not that nice. Just saying.

The doomaversary is looming

13 Jul

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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?

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.

The cost of a break up

8 Jul

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I’ve ranted and raved plenty about everything I lost after the pizza of doom. The man I loved. My best friend. The ability to sleep, eat, and dress myself. Reason. Logic. Hope. My sense of humour. All my beautiful plans for the future. My two hypothetical children.

Gone. In the snap of his fingers. Or, more specifically, in a mumbled, confusing speech he managed to blurt out while digesting half a pizza.

A pizza I f***ing paid for.

And that’s what I want to talk about today, buddies. For eleven months I’ve watched my bank balance do some real feats of acrobatics.

Anything to feel better.

I bought every self-help book that Amazon stocks. I went to psychics. Therapy. Reiki. Online dating. Flights. Holidays. Business-class flights (well, the air stewardesses make me feel so special). Train tickets. Yoga classes. Italian classes. My good friends at KobKun Thai Massage might as well have a direct debit from my bank account. Buying myself extravagant bouquets of flowers. And boxes of chocolates. And paintings. New furniture. Rugs. Lamps. More self-help books.

It’s best not to think too much about the cash monies I’ve shelled out in the name of feeling “less awful”.

But I’m usually a careful cat with money, so I can’t help thinking about it. A lot.

Well, guess what, buddies. It actually doesn’t worry me.

I could have pissed away money on alcohol and drugs. Or Louboutins (which are magnificent creations, but my little paws could never walk in them).

I have plenty to show for my power spending. My flat looks awesome. I can speak Italian and do handstands. I’ve visited friends and family, and earned a lot of airmiles. And, honestly, it makes tears swim in my eyes to consider how my therapist helped put me back together.

I didn’t just spend: I made investments. In me.

Investing in me is something I’ve never been great at when in relationships. I have a tendency to put my boyfriend first. And second. And third.

So next time (and there will be a next time) I’ll need to find someone who treats me as nicely as I’ve learned to treat myself. I know this now.

However my next relationship begins, and ends, he’ll pay for the f***ing pizza.

So what’s the financial cost of this break up?

I don’t even care. It’s money well spent.