Isnít it funny how sometimes I have days and days of real humdrum stuff and then I get on a train of thought that just wonít go away. This is the fourth day in a row that Iíve been deep in thought analysing my life and loves.
This photo symbolises how I feel every day that I wake up with DM. Itís my heart waiting for its bubble of happiness to burst. I never have a day go by without a feeling that one day soon that will happen. There is no reason for me to think that other than the fact that my mind refuses to accept that I can be happy in love. Iíve always felt that somehow because all those years ago I had pushed away the possibility of being happy and thrown myself into work and friendship so universally, that I would never be able to have that deep personal happiness that love brings with it.
I've never been able to see any single reason why anyone would ever want to love me. I've no redeeming features and there is nothing about me to love. It sounds pitiful but it's a true reflection of how I've seen myself for so long.
It seemed to me that Iíd lost the ability to find happiness in my personal life because of this and because no-one I met matched up to my expectations. In fact, because I was choosing my boyfriends on the basis that they wouldnít expect anything of me, I hadnít thought that I might be precluding myself from happiness through this selection process. It seemed to be like litter along the wayside of my career.
Funnily enough, losing Toby, my beloved Border Collie Cross helped me to see that it is possible to have a new love after an old love has gone. When I first got Archie, three months after Toby had died, I found myself looking at him with nothing more than a void in my heart. If truth be told, I felt Iíd made a terrible mistake by getting him. He wasnít Toby and therefore I didnít love him, couldn't love him. BUT I learned to love him. He desperately needed love and I found myself warming to him and then waking up one day to find this strangely lonesome dog had found his way well and truly into my heart. Then along came Rosie and I realised I loved her too.
If that was possible with the dogs then surely it was possible with a man too?
There is no reason whatsoever for me to feel threatened in my relationship with David Ė itís clear how he feels about me if only I can open my eyes and see that. Everyone else does, itís just me. You know, it goes back to the same old thoughts. I donít deserve it. I canít have everything. I canít expect to have the love of a man to add to all the other fantastic things I can count myself lucky enough to have. I just donít have the self-confidence to believe a man like David would want to love someone like me. He says the only chance of him stopping loving me is if I go on telling the world Iím fat and old regularly and he starts to believe it.
David wonders how we can be sure of the longevity of this bond between us because heís been there before and those earlier relationships have not lasted so why should this be different?
Maybe itís different because we both know what itís like to find ourselves alone. Maybe itís just different because weíre right together.
Weíre nearly four years into this and yet weíre still in that heady, exciting, intoxicating period where everything seems too blissful for words. So why do I wake up each day worrying about the fragility of this passion? I just canít explain it even to myself let alone anyone else.
When we were first seeing one another, I used to think to myself every day ĎIíll end this relationship today before Iím in too deep and I end up hurt againí. Then Iíd pull myself up and think Ďwhat on earth are you thinking, youíve met this wonderful man that makes you happy and you want to dump him in case you get hurt?í This dialogue went on inside my head for months. I was so terrified of being hurt but equally so exhilarated with having this colourful, exciting vista opening up before my eyes. In the end, I realised it was too late and I couldnít stop the carousel and get off any more, I just had to stay for the duration.
Somehow it was about taking a chance. Iíll never regret getting Toby despite his death being so painful. In the thirteen years we were together we shared so much happiness that my happiness account was still well in credit however painful his illness and loss. I got Rosie and Archie knowing that I will have to go through the pain of losing them one day because I know the joy that I will get before I have to face that will once again outweigh the sadness of loss. Yet I couldnít translate that to my love life. I had to push myself so far outside my comfort zone to accept the truth of this that I have found the journey so uncomfortable at times that Iíve almost imploded with the worry of letting someone back into my life.
But itís worth it. Itís worth ever bit of worry and fretting because itís so special. I do now see that whatever comes next, THIS is worth every joyous, happy, thrilling moment and even if there is pain ahead Iíd rather take my chances with David than be alone. If my bubble does burst? So be it. I now understand the meaning of that phrase Ďitís better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at allí.