I suspect that at this time of year, many will be reflecting on the past 12 months and looking forward to a new year and whatever it will bring. To do this would seem on face value a very irrational thing to do. One day flows into the next, night follows day, season after season, etc. But somehow the norms of time seem not to apply. For me, I’ve had an extended period of time off work and above all have to get through the month of December. December was until recently a month that I loved but for the past two years, living through it has been a chore. Why? Because my wife’s birthday is in December and she used to make Christmas extra special. Then we would do something exciting together for new year. Readers of this blog will know that my wife #2 and I separated in April 2014 and that’s why December is shitty. That’s why a year ends and a new one begins.
The clue above gives me the opportunity to state again that for me, 2014 was a bloody awful year. I ended that year very optimistic about 2015 and was determined to put my life with wife #2 behind me and forge ahead in the new year. So how have I got on?
The one thing I missed was being in a relationship so this became a focus for me. I was determined to shed the baggage of our separation which had become an intrusion into the relationships I had attempted to nurture, mostly through internet dating, but had petered out pretty quickly had they got even remotely off the ground.
So I began the year meeting a lady in person who I met on a dating site. Things started off promisingly, we had stuff in common, we made each other laugh but…it lasted less than a month. The baggage was still there, it influenced my thinking, I still wanted a clone of wife #2. I still yearned after her and I wanted her back. This, in spite of knowing she was living about 4 miles away with another man.
I planned that on St Valentine’s Day I would send her one more missive asking her to meet me and come back. It was at this moment I discovered she was off work on maternity leave. Yes, she was having a baby. Within 24 hours (we all know someone who knows someone who knows…) I learned she had the baby in January, 9 months after she left me. I was…surprised, surprised more than shocked because I had suspected it but it brought down a curtain, the final curtain. Without it being a thunderbolt from Zeus it quietly and calmly made me realise, that was it. There would be no reconciliation, it was over. It was already over but now I knew it was over.
And as luck would have it a lady who I met briefly (via an internet dating website – thanks Guardian Soulmates) in September 2014 got in contact with me and we met up in Manchester. Manchester is roughly 50 miles away from me and about 90 minutes on a train. I went. And I went again. And again after that to the point where I would catch a train to Manchester every Saturday lunchtime, we would meet up, drink, walk round, often end up in a gay bar and then…then I would catch the last train home at 8.45pm. She has 3 daughters, I have 1 son. But it was great. I adored her, we had a meeting of minds, she was kind, compassionate, emotionally intelligent, attractive, politically aware, interesting, diverse, sexy. I took a day off, my son went on an overnight school trip…we had our moments, occasionally; and if we could persevere for 3 years, our kids would be old enough, possibly be at university by 2018 all would be fine. In theory.
I was distracted. Distracted by a lady at work, a senior lady and a local lady. I cut Manchester off. Completely and abruptly. It was a risk but I took it. Big mistake. This lady was leaving a disastrous relationship, was needy, boozy, desperate. I called it off. Manchester was gone. I tried again with local, same result. Back to internet dating…met a larger than life lady, twice, then over. I tried local again who had by now moved away from the abuse. Hello, changed person, in control, settled, content, happy. It’s working, it’s going well, it could work, it will work! What could possibly go wrong?! This:
My boss at work left for another job. A vacancy arose, I applied for it. So did a few others, I got the job! Jealousy, bitterness, pettiness, call it what you will, the local lady who had no influence in the recruitment process became the focus of people’s bile. Comments were made, rumours started, she called the whole thing off. I’m single again. The job is temporary until March 31st 2016, I may get it but she cannot afford to be seen to be in a relationship with me and be accused of any bias. It’s over.
2015 teased me. It was good. Manchester was beautiful, my lady, my kind of woman but circumstances were against us. Local may not have worked but it might work. Post March 2016 who knows? Career, relationship, surely 2 things can’t go right for me at once? My life doesn’t tend to work like that. It’s time for me to take control. To work hard, to get the job and then do what is appropriate romantically. What I want and get it. Roll on 2016.