Tuesday, 19 September 2017

2269 Reasons never to wonder "What if...?"

I'm just kidding, I won't be giving you 2,269 reasons but I will give you some musings from the last day or two. You see every now and then I find myself checking up on people from my past. Friends, family members and exes that I haven't thought about or heard from in some time.

Well of course, good old trusty Facebook with the "On this day" feature popped up with some timely reminders of a trip to Greece a lifetime ago. A trip with my ex who featured within this blog and one that went down in history as being both awesome and probably one of those trips where there were some serious red flags that I didn't see despite being right in front of me.

When those memories pop up, most of the time I find myself thinking, "Oh that was such a fun time", "What a trip" or something equally positive. I inevitably see a picture of me and my ex together and then I immediately think, "I wonder how he is?” I've never wished him bad and I only ever hoped that he'd find his happiness as I've found mine. The more that I've discovered that my life is exactly what I'd always hoped it would be, the more I appreciate how wrong we were for each other. A hindsight that sometimes only time and distance can bring.

So once I've had that thought, I usually pop on over to my trusty social media channels and have a look-see. And what did I see yesterday when I looked? A lifestyle full of wanderlust, itchy feet, international adventures and generally the kinds of travel that professional travel writers don't even get to experience in their lifetime.

My ex is living his dream and despite not knowing what else was happening in his world and knowing full well what a picture on social media is worth in as far as depicting your mental state (it doesn't), your true wealth (it can never), whatever reality you're living (impossible to do with one picture and one handy dandy hashtag) and most importantly your authentic happiness (only you will ever know that).

I do hope he is happy though. I have never held any ill will towards him. I would never invite him into my life again in any capacity and I'm happy that he seems to be living the life he always dreamt of and envied others doing.

Most importantly for my own sense of satisfaction, I would prefer my suburban family lifestyle over some crazy travelling nomad’s lifestyle any day. The fact that six years on he is still travelling all over the globe and according to social media, loving it, tells me yet again that I did the right thing for me but also for him in deciding to leave.

I was talking to a friend over lunch and we were discussing how miserable he would have been had he gone along with my dream. But I have to say, I would have been equally miserable travelling the globe any longer than my three years of doing so. For me it was a phase in my life that I by no means regret. For him it was a lifestyle choice. That's the difference between us though and when it comes down to it, fundamental differences like lifestyle and what your definition of happiness is can make or break a relationship.

I look at my husband, three children, two dogs, and the modest three bedroom home we live in and I feel like the richest, happiest person on the planet. I have everything I ever hoped for and I'm happy. Being happy is my ultimate goal in life and I am. Of course there are tough times, challenging times and times when it's all a bit much. But I've never regretted anything about the life I live today and I especially don't regret leaving the relationship that this blog was about.

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

2,192 Days Later... A lifetime lived in such a short time

I actually can't believe that I'm writing this update on the six year anniversary of my decision to leave. Six years on and still I am thankful every single day that I made that decision. Never looking back and wondering "what if?", never holding any regret or sorrow of that loss.

Where am I now?

I married a wonderful man last August who has taken my girls on as his own. We knew each other before the girls were conceived but it didn't get romantic until the girls were about 10 months old. It's not all roses all the time, but gee it's wonderful to have a relationship that is constantly evolving in a positive direction for the most part. Like most couples, we have our set backs. But we use those opportunities to grow as people, as a couple and to move forward together stronger than before.

We bought a house early last year, we fell pregnant around the same time and I was offered a part time job that worked in perfectly with our family. We had our son in December and our girls are turning three this October and they are still the light of my life  We rescued two dogs, one early last year and one earlier this year and our family is now pretty full and complete.

Life has changed a lot for me and every year at this time I get a little reflective on life in general and find myself celebrating the years since I left. I share my experience with others and still get the occassional comment via the blog about how someone else was helped by my story.

This is a short update, but one to say that I'm doing well.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

1500 Days Later... Quite a fitting update

Well, it has indeed been a significant journey over the past 1500 days and as I came in to write a little update, I decided that I might work out how many days between the break up (4 July 2011) and today (12 August 2015) only to discover that it's been 1500 days.Whilst I have no idea what I've done for most of those 1500 days, I can tell you that I have been for the most part happy (a life ambition of mine), always moving forwards in a positive direction and always choosing to have a positive outlook on life.

In the last week I took the opportunity to re-read back through this blog and can I tell you something? I have learnt so much more about myself since I finished writing this. I was simply marvelling at the place that I came from and where I am now.

So, an update. The last time I wrote I was seeing someone that I was pretty in to, well that ended because I quickly realised that he wasn't for me.Upon wrapping up that particular relationship, I made a concious decision to just be alone for a while and focus on my new job and try to make the best go of that I could. Well the world had another path ready for me entirely.

It's probably easier to tell you where I am right now rather than how I got here (because there are days when I don't quite believe how I got here myself). I am a mum, of twin girls. They are beautiful and the love I have for them is unlike anything that I've ever felt before in my life. Becoming a mother I have discovered that this is what I was always destined to do (a bit new agey I know, but stick with me). The girls are the result of a one night stand with a man that I barely knew (still don't) and to him I will be eternally grateful for the part he played in giving me the most precious gifts in the world. The last 18 months through my pregnancy and the first 10 months of my girl's lives, I have grown as a person, more than I ever thought possible. I have found true happiness in my world and I wouldn't change a single second of the life that has brought me to this moment in time.

I'm not going to pretend that life is easy, it's not. I'm not going to pretend that I haven't had my share of heartbreak, dissapointment and tears to get to this point - because I definitely have. I'm not even going to pretend that I know what's next - because no one possibly could (and if you've read this whole blog, you'll know that at times I didn't even know when I was hypothesising about what the future may hold). But what I will tell you is that I have no regrets. I reflect often on the decisions made and I can safely say that I will always stick by my decision to leave the relationship that I blogged about and not for one moment have I ever changed my mind on this point or thought about the "what it's".

I actually saw the man that I blogged about last March at a mutual friend's wedding and it was nice (for me anyway) to catch up with him and have a chat. It was a moment of realisation for me at the time as I was 10 weeks pregnant and it wasn't officially announced. As I spoke to him about whether we were single/taken (both single) and happy in our lives, it became more apparent to me than ever that I had continued to grow and move on at a rate much faster than he.

I still (very occasionally) speak to the man that this blog was written about. My personal opinion is that he is someone that defines "happiness" very clearly in his mind and when he achieves what he has defined as the ultimate act/goal/outcome of happiness, he realises that it wasn't actually something that was going to make him happy. It is my opinion that he will never stop doing this to himself and those around him. I can't imagine how exhausted he is always chasing the unachievable.

I still get such great joy from reading comments from people who have read my blog telling me about how it's helped them. For me, this was one of the main aims. The other aim was to be accountable to myself as I went through the journey of ending a long term relationship that I'd been emotionally jailed into for many years beyond what should have been acceptable.

As for what the future holds for me? I'm currently studying education with the aim to become a primary school teacher in time for my girls to go to school (we can all start school together). I am enjoying being a stay at home mum with my girls and watching them grow and develop everyday. Their cuddles, kisses and giggles are simply the best. My openness to romantic options for the future is very much there, maybe you'll have an update 2000 days later with the gossip. ;)

Who am I? I am the luckiest woman on earth. I am confident, happy and so full of optimism for what the future holds that some days I could burst. I am someone who acknowledges the journey that brought me to this place in time and someone who takes the tentative steps into the future, excited for what's ahead and the adventures that I'll be taking.

I always end these little updates wondering if I'll blog here again. I hope so, life is really just beginning isn't it? :D

Saturday, 19 October 2013

839 Days Later (not that I'm keeping count)

Long time no write and boy what a journey I have been on. I haven't reflected on what I've previously written this time, but here I am at 2:20am on a Saturday night, sober as a judge writing yet another entry into this blog.

Oh, the lessons I've learnt over time. About July of this year my life (finally) started taking positive turns. I was done with learning lessons and was ready to get serious about life. Within two months I had a new job, new car, new home, new man (and new pots and pans and knives.... but that's another story).

The reader's digest of what I've been up to since I last wrote... In April last year, I fell in love with a married man, had an affair and subsequently his marriage broke up and we were in a relationship for about 9 months. He ended up leaving me to go back to his wife, which wasn't such a bad thing for me as it only took me a month or two to reflect, forgive myself and move on (with the help of a very dear friend from the past who took me into her home and was the best friend I could ask for). He was an old school friend - there was a familiarity there with him and although I swore never to be with anyone who was divorced or who had kids (I wanted to be the first everything), we made a go of it for a short time. What I learnt was that I definitely wanted kids - I just wanted some of my own and with someone who hadn't had four kids to two women and to someone who wasn't already (currently) married. Say what you will, nothing can hurt me more than the words of my sister asking what I would have done to someone doing what I had to her and my niece. It took a while, and it was tough, but I did forgive myself for doing what I did.

Almost a year to the day after I started seeing the married guy, I started dating a guy call Ryan who on paper was everything that I was wanting in a partner. That ended after two months of very rocky dating when he decided that he couldn't see a future. I personally hadn't invested either way, so needless to say the next night had a one night stand and moved quickly on.

Finally and presently. In June I started talking to a lovely guy, whom I'm currently in a relationship with. I'm experiencing my third semi-serious relationship since I left my relationship in London (not counting flings and rebound affairs). If there's something that I've learnt - it is that every relationship needs the freshest start you can give it. The cleaner the slate, the easier it is to accept someone for who they are and love them anyway.

The one thing that I will say with reference to this entire blog is this: I am so glad that I left. The man that I left said to me at one stage that I would regret leaving him, that I would see that the grass isn't always greener and that I would see what a great guy he was. Well I'll tell you this - I have not once regretted my decision and despite learning a lot more lessons and making some mistakes, I am truly thankful for the strength that I have developed over time. The knowledge that I am my best self, that no one can break me, that I have to be true to myself first and foremost and that ultimately I can be happy in a relationship. I have been taught the power of unconditional love, the power of taking risks and experimenting and the power of generosity. Things that I didn't have within the relationship that I left. Things that I appreciate every day and things that I am learning to be better at myself.

I love the random comments that I receive on here every now and then and thank you for taking the time to read what I've written. The whole process of writing what I went through helped me discover myself and I hope that it's helped anyone else that has read it.

I remember it as clearly as if it were yesterday, googling the things I did, discovering the book and desperately finding it to download and read ASAP. The revelations that followed were absolutely life changing and I haven't looked back, except to forgive myself and others who wronged me over time. You can't carry hatred in your heart for too long or it will turn you into a toxic, hateful person. It took me a long time to forgive myself and others and now I look back with fondness at the good times, forgetting most of the bad times but knowing enough that they happened so that I don't ever wonder "what if...".

If you have read this blog and become a follower and have your own journey, I'd love to hear it.

Friday, 24 February 2012

235 Days Later

I'll be honest, I thought about writing a round up for this blog over the New Year period. The reason? I'd hit another obstacle in my path to recovering my prior self. But then I made a realisation - that I was no longer emotionally tied to this situation that I found my way out of.

I will also admit that on writing this particular post, I haven't read through the entirety of my previous posts - the reason again was quite simply that I started, and couldn't continue, knowing how far I'd come on my path. I didn't feel like reliving the experiences would give me any positive benefit.

So, in answer to a comment that was posted on this blog asking where I was now and what I was doing, here is the answer:

I returned to London, I went on the planned trip to Paris that my partner and I had booked. It was awkward and uncomfortable for most of the time because from the moment that I got off the plane in London, I really deep down had known what was going to happen. I had probably known it for a long time, but the strength that I'd built up whilst in Australia and the friends and family that I'd seen whilst I was there had really given me the boost in my diminished confidence to make the decision.

In a nutshell, here is what happened:

I returned to London, went to Paris. On the Monday after our weekend away,  onthe 4th July, I crumbled again, back to where I was on that Friday afternoon, sitting in the pub with my client only a month prior. I conciously made the decision to leave the relationship.

When my partner arrived home from work that evening, he asked if everything was OK and I said the words, "No, we have to talk". I then told him that I wanted to leave him. There were tears, the question why was asked a number of times, I was reassured that he would make the changes. But it was too late and the damage had already been done.

I was clear for the first time in a long time that I had made the right decision and a weight had been lifted off my shoulders - the ambivalence was gone and I was free. Of course that wasn't the end of it. I needed all of my funds to get back to Australia, so couldn't move out. He had funds, but didn't want to go somewhere else. We agreed to live together (broken up) for the next six weeks until I left for Australia again. We calmly discussed things like telling family and close friends, splitting up possessions (there weren't many jointly owned items) and making the announcement on Facebook (a pretty big decision these days).

The next six weeks were mostly good, a lot of talking through issues occurred. Although I picked up that a lot of the conversations were beginning to get repetitive and I continually felt like I was saying the same things with no further acceptance of the facts or my feelings. This was much easier to take knowing that I was leaving the relationship for the right reasons. Those six weeks meant that I left the UK with a clear, calm outlook on the relationship. I'd lived it for so long, seen it go wrong and then within the book that I read, found a name for the reasons it went so wrong.

It wasn't all roses, in those six weeks, there were two bad nights and one really bad night. On the first bad night, my ex had been out, had a few drinks with mates and had come home a little disgruntled in general. We talked, he seemed reasonable, and all was right in the world again.

On the very bad night he came home in a very verbally abusive mood and told me things like he was a great guy, that I was making a mistake, that I would soon see that the grass is not actually greener. I told him to stop and think about what he was saying a number of times before packing up my pillow and a blanket and going to sleep in the lounge room. He came down a few hours later and apologised and asked me to come back to the bed. I did, but only because I was sick at the time and the couch and loungeroom was hot and uncomfortable.

After this night I distanced myself from him. I did ask him afterwards if he meant anything that he had said and he said that he'd meant some of it. This conversation made me see that I had most definitely made the right decision, as did most of his responses and actions in those weeks.

Since I've returned to Australia, I've achieved a Certificate IV in Small Business Management and gained a government grant to start my own business, which I've now done. I've moved to a new city, to be near my sister and her family. My little niece arrived on Boxing Day and I am so happy that I made the decision to be here for that and to support my family as much as I can.

I have dated. I've had some doozies of dates actually. I've had a rebound relationship - that's a whole other post. I developed another ridiculous crush on someone who I'm now friends with, and that I respect and admire as a person.

The most important thing that I want to emphasise here though is that it hasn't all been smooth running. I've taken on a lot of new things in quick succession and have nearly failed at some, I've become better at identifying the downward spirals in my mood, usually around a key event in the breakup process, and how I need to deal with it.

I have had contact with my ex on a semi-regular basis, however just recently he deleted me as a Facebook friend. This was upsetting, but not because my ex deleted me, but because I really thought that we had the being friendly (if not actually friends) with the ex thing sussed. And because he told me that it was because we weren't really speaking, when we had been - but also when he has loads of other people on Facebook that he doesn't speak to.

My point is that each time I hit another obstacle, I review how far I've come and how much I've achieved. Yes I've made mistakes in this process, but I have learnt from them and moved forward each time. I've had the valuable support of those friends and family that supported me in the lead up to, making and reviewing of my decision to leave.

And I have to say that leaving was the best decision that I have ever made. I have found the me that I can be, the me that I will be in a future relationship. I look in the mirror now and see the good things as well as the things that I'd like to change, but the good things are the things that I'm proud of and look at most! I am not so self-conscious in the company of others and I have built a great friendship base here in my new home town and have a very active social life full of fun, laughs and genuine friendships.

I will always love my ex for the part that he played in my life. He was a big part of my 20s and we did have some good times - some great times and some absolutely life-altering times. I choose to look back fondly on these times with the knowledge that we weren't right for each other. I have learnt so much from this relationship and I have regained much strength since I left it.

The most important lesson that I've learnt though is that it's not over. The process of recovery and finding that happiness in the world that will mean that I'm able to open myself up to another relationship is an on-going one. And even when I am ready to meet someone new, I am more reassured with each day that passes that I won't lose myself within a relationship ever again.

I'm not sure if I'll continue blogging. I have written since the breakup, however I haven't blogged. I'm not sure why not, but I did always want to keep blogging through the break up process and recovery. Sometimes words don't come that easily to me and at other times, like today, they flow with ease.

I do want to thank those friends and family that have supported me throughout this entire process and to those that have read this blog. Not many of my friends and family have the address for this blog, but it's been an important part of the process too. 

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

London bound

Tonight I leave Australia to travel back to London. Everyone has been asking if I'm looking forward to it. The answer is quite simply, yes and no. I am looking forward to getting on with life, but I have caught up with so many good friends and of course, my family since I've been here.

I am confident that I've found the awesome person that disappeared somewhere else over the last year or more. I am happy, energised and looking forward to winding up all of my work commitments in the UK in order to come back to Australia at the end of the year.

As for my relationship - I feel that my partner and I had a break through moment whilst talking on the phone this morning. For the first time, he actually agreed with me that he had issues (hence the way that he's treated me). I've told him that I'm not going to stand for it anymore and that he's going to have to straighten up his act if he wants a future with me. He blamed his mum for the issues, which is probably a likely source of his problems. However he needs to take responsibility too.

We are booked in to see a relationship counsellor next week and I'm hoping to be able to blog about that too. I've found out recently that some of our friends have seen a counsellor (and they are still together), which is nice to know. Everyone usually hides their relationship problems so that no one knows what goes on, but since I've been away, it appears that everyone has problems, some more serious than others, some people more easily able to work them through with their partners. I do hope that when I get back to London that I will see that I have a future with my partner, but if it turns out that the problems between us are too far gone, then I hope that we happily move on to better relationships by realising how we have gone wrong with this one.

Thursday, 23 June 2011


Wow, I've just been hit by a brick. Or at least that's how it feels. The conclusion of the book, which I've had to pause reading because I was crying too much wasn't a happy ending :(
I don't know what I was looking for, but it wasn't confirmation that I should leave my relationship. But I answered the questions honestly, I even blogged them so that I couldn't be in denial about the answers. And what it all pointed to was that my relationship is too bad to stay in.
The author says that I'm going to be quite emotional about it all - which is an understatement. But she said that it's natural to feel loads of different emotions when you find the clarity that you should leave. She says that it doesn't mean that I shouldn't go.
I'm devastated. I don't know what I was looking for, but it wasn't to leave my relationship. Not really. I was looking for a sign that we weren't that bad and that we could make it through this and come out the other end smiling. The conclusion of the book has really thrown me and it isn't as if the author is saying, just go to therapy and you'll be fine. She's saying under no circumstances should you reconsider the outcome, it is what it is and you have answered these questions in a way that means I'd be happier to leave.
I'm stunned. I'm in denial. But I'm not confused. I'm feeling very guilty and sad. But the author is right, there is clarity there.
For weeks and possibly months I've know that this was coming. I've known the outcome that was right. But I was in denial. I wouldn't have travelled halfway around the globe if I had thought that there was a chance that we could make it.
I haven't told my partner any of this. I have to wait until we are face to face to have this conversation. One person that reads this blog knows who I am. So she knows everything that I've written and has been a confident the entire past month. That is when the real crux of this situation kicked off. When I met Mr A, who although didn't do anything directly to make me think, but triggered some kind of catalyst reaction, through which I have now come out the other end of.
I'm sure that I will still try to give it a go when I get back in some form or other. It's hard to remove yourself from a dream that was otherwise one of a happily ever after with the man that I've loved for the better part of my adult life.
As I finish the last week of my holiday here in Australia, I will be thinking more and more about this blog, and will write again I'm sure. It has been a secret get away from my thoughts, a place to collect all of my imagined and real thoughts and experiences.