St Valentine’s Day Blues

If you’re in love, great!  You have my best wishes, you don’t know how lucky you are.

The last time I was truly in love on a February 14th was in 2013 when my marriage to C was strong.  Twelve months later it was faltering, 14 months later we separated.

That was 2014, it’s two years on and I’m pretty much over it now.  I wish we hadn’t separated but we have; she now lives elsewhere with a child from another man, I no longer wish to be with her.

So, moving on, things should be better, they should be good.  Well no, they aren’t .  Not at the moment anyway.

For me, 2015, after a dreadful 2014, began with renewed optimism and a determination to get out of the funk of my failed marriage and move on.  I was on dating websites and actively pursued dates.  Things started ok and by the end of March I met the wonderful M who I utterly adored.  We would meet on Saturday afternoons in her home town of Manchester, drink, talk, laugh, mooch around and be great company for each other.  Then at 8.45pm I would have to catch the last train home and she would catch a bus home.  After all, our respective children needed to be looked after.  We had our moments, we were good for each other but living 50 miles apart presented its own problems.

In April last year, me very senior lady boss texted me and asked to meet.  We met.  She was leaving her partner although still living with him at the time but their relationship was breaking down and there was DV involved.  She pursued me, vigorously.  She was/is attractive, successful, solvent.  She did nice things for me, paid for me, bought me presents, we liked each other, we laughed and the great thing was, she was local.

I stopped seeing M.  That was difficult. LB was going through a tough time and liked a drink.  Liked a drink a little too much.  It was too much for me; I began to question whether I had made a mistake with M and found I couldn’t cope with LB’s super-charged emotional state.  I stopped seeing her; for a couple of weeks anyway.  Then we tried again.  She moved out, worked hard and drank hard.  I didn’t fare well with it and called it off.  I told her this wasn’t our time, that she had to well and truly move out, find her own place, move in with her kid.  I told her she should begin to love herself again, be content with her life and start again.  The way things were, LB was in a classic rebound situation.

In July 2015 my first line manager announced he was leaving the company.  I went to see LB and her boss and asked for the job.  I, along with 5 other internal employees was interviewed by my first line manager and an independent manager.  LB deliberately did not get involved with the recruitment process.  I got the job.

LB suddenly became my new first line manager, I felt we needed to rebuild our bridge.  We went out, chatted, drank in moderation and had fun.  It felt natural, normal and right for us to get back together, so we did.  I was still not 100% certain but after we made a couple of mundane trips out together I found myself really enjoying her company.  She had by now bought her own house, moved her kids in, cut the drinking down, was exercising and looked great.

Then, after about 6 weeks of me being in the role the rumours began.  The whispers; I had only got the job because I was sleeping with LB; people felt uncomfortable speaking in my presence in case it got back to LB.  I told LB about this and she called off the relationship immediately.  That was the end of September 2015, it’s now February.  What makes the situation worse is that my position is on a 6 month temporary contract so within the next couple of months I should know whether I have the job permanently.  In the meantime, LB cannot be seen to allow any decision she makes to be compromised by accusations of bias by being in a relationship with me.  She reports to some very senior people who hold the power.

I hold out the hope that I WILL get the job and LB and I WILL get back together.  But I don’t know, it has become a taboo subject.  And you know what?  It is utterly unfair.  I have been widowed and I have had a wife leave me but because of rumour, innuendo and jealousy(?) I cannot be with the woman I want to be with.

It feels like being in a movie but movies only last a couple of hours, this is lasting for months with the ending unknown to the cast.

And that is why I sit alone on St Valentine’s Day.  Frustrated and a annoyed.  I hope I get the job, I hope LB and I get back together.  I could date someone else but I can’t.  As someone said, first I need to mend it or end it.  Still waiting.

Monday Morning

It’s Monday morning I wake at 4.52am.  I make the cardinal error of checking my iPhone – a habit.  I check then I check POF followed by Guardian Soulmates.  I put the phone down in the dark.  I get up to pee, go back to bed. I lie awake for a bit until something mildly stress inducing crosses my mind.  I hastily grab my phone and check Facebook.  The mildly stressful thought disappears.  I lie awake.

The alarm goes of at 6.42am, also on my iPhone.  I get out of bed, it’s fairly mild because the central heating has been on since 6.28am and the temperature outside is about 10 degrees C.  I pee, sitting down. I have a Prince Albert it saves making a mess on the floor. I grab my dressing gown out of my bedroom and wake up my son.  He stays in bed.  I go downstairs into the kitchen, put water into the kettle and switch it on.  I pour 2 glasses of orange juice and take my son’s into the lounge with a multi-vitamin pill and an Omega 3 enriched capsule.  I leave them on the coffee table.  The kettle has boiled, I pour boiling water onto my tea-bag inside my mug.  I drink my orange juice and make him a bowl of coco-pops.  They go into the lounge too and on my way back into the kitchen I give him a shout; he won’t get up yet.

BBC6 Music is on the radio and a DJ who’s name I can’t remember hands over at 7am to Sean Keaveney.  The Smiths are on.  I extract my tea-bag, throw it into the recycling bin outside, pour milk into the tea just in time for the toaster to pop.  I put the crumpets back in for an extra minute and grab some spread and marmite. Up pop the crumpets for a second time I spread spread and marmite on them, sit down at the breakfast bar and eat while simultaneously checking all the sites I checked overnight on my iPhone.

I put the dishes into the dishwasher and make my son’s lunch – a chicken sandwich, a small chocolate bar, an apple and a small carton of orange juice.  His lunch goes into his lunchbox the lunchbox goes into the fridge.  I drink my tea.  I make my lunch; humus sandwich with tomato and celery today.  It goes into the fridge also, I finish my cup of tea and put the empty mug in the dishwasher.  I go upstairs, turn my son’s light on and suggest he gets up.

I brush my teeth in my underpants and socks, remove them, turn on the shower and after the water has warmed, I shower myself, all over, after removing the socks and underpants first and place them in the dirty washing basket.  After drying myself I put on a fresh pair of socks and underpants and dry shave my face.  I tip the residue beard from the electric razor out of the window and disturb the starling nesting in my eaves.  I moisturise with Nivea cream.  My son is downstairs, I turn his bedroom light off and go into my bedroom. He comes upstairs and goes into the bathroom.  I dress. Trousers, shirt, tie. I decide to fasten my top button.  I don’t usually do that but it’s a new habit; it reminds me of Escape To Alcatraz.  Looks smarter with a tie.  I don’t wear a suit or jacket, just a navy blue pullover.  On go the shoes.

Put on my watch and ID badge, go downstairs.  Put my lunch into my bag and put the bag into the boot of my car.  Make sure the dishwasher is full and put it on, timed to start in 3 hours, for no particular reason.  My son needs £7.00 for a bus pass, I don’t have it, I’ll pay him back.  I check the back door is locked and I check upstairs the windows are closed and lights are off.  I put my iPad on charge, grab my wallet, put my coat on and put my phone in my pocket.  I find my keys.  I exchange banter with my son and fetch him the back door key.  We exit the house together. I unlock the car, he gets inside, I lock the front door and get in the car.  It’s windy.

I drop him off at the bus stop, we kiss.  A school girl arrives full of smiles in his direction.  I smile and drive to work.  I arrive at work at 7.55am.