Surviving as a singleton!
The shock of a relationship breakdown really can knock you for six. At first, you are consumed with thoughts of how you'll ever be able to survive without that person in your life. The devastating loneliness felt when someone you saw or heard from each day is now gone. The hurt that they no longer want or need you in their lives. The knowledge that they'll never take you in their arms again. Knowing that for whatever reason, they just don't love you anymore.
It really is hideous to feel like this yet at some point, we all go through it. Sadly, it doesn't get any easier however many times you mourn the loss of a relationship. I am currently going through this grieving process and wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. I am lucky that I have such understanding friends who can sympathise. After all, we've all been there.
The first day after the break up all I could think about was how much I missed him and couldn't contemplate life without him. I felt like I was going insane! He was in my thoughts permanently, I couldn't sleep without seeing his face. Conversations we'd had were running through my head. Worst of all, the knowledge that it had happened again, a relationship that I thought was the real thing had melted into nothing.
My friends took me under their wing. I didn't want to leave the house at first but I was persuaded to and felt comforted by talking about it. I was reassured that he had not been particularly fair in the way that he had treated me. They also pointed out many negative points in the relationship that I hadn't thought about because I wasn't ready to. They highlighted that it was better ending the relationship now at 5 months than at a later date when there would be more hurt involved. Despite knowing all this inside, I just hadn't been able to look at it from this angle. Already, albeit slowly, I was starting to heal.
I was advised to write a list of positive and negative points about him and the relationship. I've done this before, after other relationship breakdowns and always found that the negatives far outweighed the positives. The lists even made me laugh! Obviously, not for some time but months later I could see i'd done the right thing and was better off without them. I wrote my list last night and once again the positives were few. I'm now starting to realise that it was far from the perfect relationship and he was a long way from being the perfect man!
At the beginning of the relationship, I was promised the world and more. Looking back on that now, it's like watching a film about someone else's life! Yes I know, relationships lose their rosy glow after a few months but ours seemed to exceedingly quickly. When I looked back at how I had spent my time recently, I realised that not once had we done something I had decided. It was always about what he wanted to do. I felt so annoyed at myself as i'd sworn that I'd never let that happen. After my last disastrous relationship, I vowed that I would not change for anyone else, they would have to accept me and love me for who I am.
Rather cross now, I pondered what had happened to the feisty girl who'd been through hell and back. The promise i'd made to myself that I would never allow anyone to take me for granted because I deserved better. What on earth was I playing at? I realised that I had been doing fine before I met him and my scars had started to heal. The important thing now is not to regret meeting him but viewing it as a steep learning curve. Yes, another one. How many i'm meant to have I truly don't know!
Once I was able to look at the negatives, I was astounded by the realisation that gradually, my life was going to improve because the relationship had failed! I certainly wasn't thinking that on the first day! I still get moments of utter despair and still sometimes feel no one will ever love me again but that's all part of the process. I hadn't realised just how much I had compromised what I wanted so that he'd be happy. Now, I could do things my way again and not have to please him.
I have my impossibly comfy super king sized bed all to myself . Far more comfortable than the narrow fold down bunk in the Boatman's cabin I was squashed into before . I have showers whenever I want them, running water, electricity, Internet and cooking facilities. He had decided that there would only be paraffin lamps and a wood burner on the boat. The water tank was too small to have more than one shower a week. I'm sorry but one shower a week? No thanks. Not my idea of comfortable, clean living. Disturbingly, his was!
He snored too! At first, he wore nose strips and gargled mouth wash to try and alleviate the snoring. That soon fell by the wayside, after about a month I think. I no longer have to lie there wanting to be intravenously fed Valium in a desperate attempt to get some sleep! His music taste and mine clashed spectacularly! Weirdly, when we first met, I thought we had very similar likings, how wrong I was. He adored folk music and some country too. I would rather gouge my eyes out with rusty spoons than listen to that! He rarely compromised and it was his music playing day in, day out, never mine.
He wouldn't wait an extra hour for my body combat class to finish so we could drive to the marina where his boat was docked. He wanted us both to go but wouldn't let me have that little bit of me time first. In hindsite, I think he liked the fact that I had no car and had to rely on him. Independence is not to be sniffed at! There are two classes a week of body combat which I love mainly for the stress relief it gives me. One was on a Thursday, one on a Saturday. I would miss them both . He was in such a rush to get to his boat! He would say he was going to get some painting done then would just sit there drinking and chatting to other blokes on the boat yard. I didn't even have a light to read a book to distract me from everyone getting drunk around me!
How therapeutic writing is. Reading back through this, it's difficult to say what I was getting from the relationship. It also speaks volumes about my self esteem. I am the only person who can make myself happy and I need to be comfortable in my own skin before I get into a situation like this again. On the plus side, I've lost loads of weight, I'll be kicking and punching my stress out at the gym again and hopefully as an outcome will develop buttocks like two hard boiled eggs in a bag!
I'll be able to write more now, no more excuses! I was able to buy myself a laptop with money from my 40th birthday a week or so ago and won't be stuck on a rusty boat with no computer or electricity to see what i'm writing! Perhaps things aren't as bad as they seem! I'm determined to try and stay positive. I've been through a lot worse and i'm stronger than I think. I will get through this. Watch this space... This bitch is back!
Copyright © Tara Carbery.
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