Hopeless

Hopeless romantics scare me. Have you never been scarred from love? Please tell me what that is like if you are a hopeless romantic.

What does hopeless romantic even mean?

Since giving in to the love I feel for GG and accepting that I am loved and in love, I’ve been in a very sappy mood.

I’m daydreaming a bit more often, I’m seeing couples for the first time in ages and smiling at PDA’s instead of cringing. I’m lying on the sofa or in bed wishing that GG was with me on the nights I’m alone, and telling him so (I don’t ordinarily, because I’m a strong independent woman who doesn’t need a man). My independence has dive-bombed and I’m now looking ahead on how I can fill my free days with GG, planning dates and fun things to do, or just deciding to chill and eat some food before getting an early night. It is close to 8 months, yet the bedroom antics are as wild as ever.

I’m a firm believer that if a guy tells you he loves you after sex or alcohol, you have to give him the benefit of the doubt. That oxytocin has us all messed up.

GG and I have just spent the best part of a week with my son on the English coast. We’ve been camping. One night, after a particularly dirty bedroom session (I really can’t go into detail, because our sex life can be rather twisted and I am honestly ashamed of myself, but not so ashamed that I won’t do it again, you feel me?) GG says ‘ I fucking love you’.

It wasn’t immediately afterwards, and GG has been telling me he loves me for at least a month, so I allowed it. I replied ‘oh yeah? I love you more’. It was as simple and straight forward as that, but in the moment I said it, after nearly a week of watching him playing and supporting my son, hearing their laughter and seeing him nurture him, I couldn’t hold it in. It might also have been the oxytocin you see, but when I woke up the next day, I knew I’d meant it. As we packed all our stuff away and loaded the car and van up with our gear, me returning home and GG off to visit some friends to do some more camping, I did not want to say goodbye. I hugged him and I didn’t want to let go. I kissed him and I didn’t want to stop.

So, what is a hopeless romantic? Can a love cynic be turned? Because I think ya gal right here, miss independent pants who doesn’t need a man, who won’t give up her free time, who thinks the Menz are dogs and they deserve nothing, is becoming one.

FD #9

And the saga continues.

There’s one thing I’m acutely aware of right now. I get wayyy too excited when I get excited about boys.

Some boys have to earn this, like gamer geek for instance, because the attraction isn’t immediate. For other boys, like FD and Mr Big, my excitement has to be contained because I’m already physically attracted to them.

But no matter which of these beginnings strike in the dating world, once I like somebody, I build up my own hopes and dreams. And I also break my own hopes and dreams when The Menz inevitably fail to live up to my unrealistic expectations.

And whilst my expectations might not be unrealistic, I really only want companionship with somebody funny who is chivalrous and flirty and sexy, who knows how’s to string a sentence or two together with consistency (Ok, so sue me), my imaginations run wild with thoughts on how they fulfil these expectations and that is indeed where I let myself down. And also let them down.

And in hindsight, this was what went wrong with FD and Mr Big. Wayyyy too keen wayyy too early. And then by the time I realised this and pulled back, I pulled back too much and it.just.stopped. I really need to learn a happy medium.

Somehow.

FD text me today. Somebody had left a football top down the park. The top is initialled and this man works at the school the kids in my team and the team in the year below all attend. So he knew exactly who the top belonged to. But, he text me and asked me to share and if that’s him breaking the ice then I’ll take it. I replied and asked him how he was. I referred to the fact we hadn’t spoke for ages and he agreed. He asked me about my walking and shared he was down the park again with some of the kids. I told him about my newfound love for playing Tennis and he shared the link to join his local tennis club. Not my club, the one near him.

And the kisses are back on the texts.

And look at me, reading into it. Hoping.

Yet.

Again.

Emotion (Me) vs Logic (Brain)

Just one example of my inner ramblings involving Mr Big.

Him: We should hook up

Me: at fucking last. Yes we should.

Brain: hang on

Me: what?!

Brain: you work with this guy

Me: and?

Brain: there’s rules

Me: like what?

Brain: you shouldn’t mix business and pleasure

Me: who came up with that?

Brain: YOU! You Did.

Me: ….

Brain: and he’s already told you he doesn’t get attached

Me: yeah bu-

Brain: And you know he has a history

Me: Bu-

Brain: and do you wanna be gossip?

Me: B-

Brain: and let’s not forget the fact he didn’t swipe back on you!

Me: CAN I FUCKING SAY SOMETHING?!

Brain:….go on.

Me: I won’t get attached either!

Brain: LIAR!

Me: I won’t!

Brain: Exactly how long have you been crushing on him?

Me: So what?!

Brain: A crush is far safer than acting on it. This won’t end well

Me: but I want to act on it

Brain: I’m not giving you permission to act on it

Me: stop ruining my life

Brain: Fine. But don’t question why you didn’t listen to me when it all goes down in flames

4 months later….

Brain: *sigh* Told You So!

Witty Title – How do you know?

Is it just me, or does everybody have imaginary conversations in their head with people they know?

I do this all the time. In the car, in the shower, as I’m walking around the supermarket or when I’m lying in bed just ready to drift off.

And it can be with anybody; a friend, a family member, a random member of the public, somebody I work with and absolutely with somebody I like.

The overriding theory here is that if I am fond of the person, I will create scenarios and play it out from my perspective. This is particularly evident if something has gone wrong somewhere. A side effect of a lifetime of anxiety. Sometimes it’s reviewing a situation that could have gone better. Sometimes they are scenarios that are entirely possible, but have just not yet come to fruition because, well, timing. Most of the time though they are completely made up scenarios that are just bloody wishful thinking.

When it comes to dating, I have this idea in my head that I will be completely chill. I want to be completely chill. I don’t want to overthink. I don’t want to fret. I just want it to be an effortless gathering of information of each other, intertwined with flirting, fun dates, knowing looks and companionship.

But alas, this is not how my brain works and the daydream-like imaginations run exceptionally wild in particular when I find a guy I have the hots for. A guy I connect with, a guy who presses all my buttons and makes me tick.

How do I know this? Well because right now my mind is racing with a multitude of scenarios that have Mr Big as the starring role. Whilst poor Gamer Geek only enters my thoughts when his name pops up on my screen. Rarely do I message him first which should be a bloody big neon flashing sign that he is into me and I should start placing more eggs in his basket.

But ohhh no! It’s Mr Big that gets all my thinking time (soon forgot about Football Dad didn’t I?). Gamer Guy barely gets a look in with dream-state saint, even though, and it’s very obvious to see, despite whatever irrelevant scores I apply to either of them, he is quite clearly leading in this Love race!

So…is there a lesson I have not yet learned here? Is this thinking time a form of over investment? If the thinking time is a side effect of my anxiety, what is it about Mr Big that is triggering me? And if it isn’t anxiety, how do I know when it’s ok to let my imagination run wild? And why does it run wild with some people, but not others?

Am I mad for having soliloquy’s running through my mind? Is this madness a form of love, the one that people refer to as temporary insanity? I’m not in love, surely. Not with either of these two.

But if you was to ask me right now, hand on heart, swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth….who I want to love?

It’s the dirty Kawasaki himself, Mr Big.

Sigh.

Mind, Body. Soul

My New Years resolution for 2020 was to improve myself. I wanted to get fitter. I wanted to practice mindfulness more and I wanted to take care of myself more. I wanted to find healthy outlets for my frustrations. I wanted to start showing up for myself and become the best version of me that I can. At the start of the year I only stated this aloud to myself because there’s always that niggling doubt that I won’t achieve what I set out to do. Which is scary. I also knew this wouldn’t be a quick fix and it would take some effort, pushing myself to do small things until they become habit and I wasn’t sure whether other people would give me the patience I needed, but it is nearly Christmas and as such nearly 2021 so now seemed as good a time as any to reflect.

I started working on my body as this was the easiest place to start. I wasn’t particularly pleased with the way I looked, a little too podgy in places, but instead of focusing on that, I wanted to celebrate what it could do. It keeps me moving. I have all working parts. I’m eternally grateful for the health of my body. I wanted to reward my body for all the hard work it does for me. I also wanted to focus on the amazing parts of me, my lovely thick long red hair and my big green eyes. My long legs. My athletic body shape. So what if I’m a bit podgy in places, that podge makes for a soft pillow when I’m cuddling my son, which he tells me often. And so slowly over the course of a few months, my mindset switched from fault finding to ‘you are fab’ I started rewarding my body with massages to straighten it out and dedicated a ‘me’ day where my body didn’t have to work so hard…sofa/duvet day with films/documentaries/tv shows/music/reading. On these same days I’d eat whatever took my fancy, whatever my body craves on that day and I’d end it with a hot bubble bath with candles for a job well done all week.

Then lock down hit. And the massages had to stop. I was still working hard as a key worker & felt a lot of pressure and stress, but I didn’t stop the Body process. I continued with the sofa days and the bubble baths and the binge TV, music, guilt free eating.

I found the beginning of lockdown fairly easy, but as the weeks turned into months I felt myself spiralling. And that’s when I realised I needed to do something about the mind. And so I started blogging again. This space has given me the opportunity to write down my own thoughts and feelings and just general get my crazy musings down so they don’t stick in my head. Admittedly it came from my dating life and it has continued along that theme because that is where I really needed the help. I imagine I’d get a lot of weird looks if I voiced out loud some of the things I write on here. I started to learn gratitude. Being thankful for the things in your life is a really great way to switch the negative thinking into positive thinking. I also started learning again. I’m not studying, but just taking some time each week to learn a little bit more about something I’m interested in. I also started creating again, drawing, podcasting and creating wooden signs.

Soul was the final chapter. I’m still finding it hard to articulate what this means to me, which tells me I’m still working on it. But at the height of summer I was able to get back to some of my hobbies – football and hiking, two things that bring me pure joy. And they do help fill my soul, I’ve also lost 1 stone since which is wonderful for my body and exercise is medicine for the mind. But I still feel there is something missing, I can’t quite fill up the tank because I can’t connect with my friends and I haven’t been able to travel much.

But, what has become blindingly obvious is that at no point has my Mind, Body, Soul goals and achievements rested or even touched on my desire to not be single. Which is rather remarkable given the amount of dating I have done this year (ironically, more so than any other year). But it has helped tremendously in an unintended way; whilst I still hold out hope that the chalk to my cheese is out there, I have found a peace in myself. I trust myself to find the right man when I am good and ready and to pick a better than I have previously because I am better than I have previously been. And whether it is the first man I meet and feel a connection with or the hundredth, if things don’t really go to plan, I will trust it is because something better is coming along behind. This mindset has been quite the epiphany, super enlightening, empowering even and when I couple that with my own sense of self-worth, which is that I can bring so much more to the table than just being a mother and having a job and well, that feels rather marvellous!

She Cray Cray

‘’If she’s single, pretty and fit, she’s crazy.’’

This was a statement by a man. And I’ll be honest, I’m a little triggered.

It’s not because I disagree. But rather the fact that it suggests that women who are the opposite of those words, or who don’t fit all three of those descriptions are not crazy.

One of my bestest friends is completely neurotic. She’s pretty and fit but married and let me tell you, the stories she has told me about her husband and the things she has done are way beyond anything I could ever think up.

– she pretended to be an asian model on linked in and chatted up her husband to see if he’d take the bait

– she deleted an entire hard drive containing photos of him in his previous marriage and binned his previous wedding photos.

– she linked her phone to his so she could get into his emails and Instagram

– doesn’t allow his eldest daughter in their house or to speak her name

– checked his internet history, found porn and so gave the laptop a bath soak

I mean I could go on. And I know men who are equally ‘crazy’, pouring fish oil on car trims and leaving strategically placed make-up in the house, dating family members of their ex.

Ok so men may be more petty than crazy but my point stands.

And most often, the word crazy is used in the context of ‘its a bad thing’. If you ask my friend she’s say her actions come from a place of love, and the men from a place of hurt, anger or jealousy. But it’s interesting that all of these things are steered by emotions.

Now, I’m not saying I’m not crazy. I can definitely fall foul of my own emotions and I’ve done some pretty crazy things when that’s happened….

– I once text a guy who I hadn’t even been on a date with a fucking essay on how I felt such a strong connection and that him going quiet on me had really upset me and he was a cock blah blah blah – turns out his grandmother had died. Awks.

– I imagine any guy with dating potential in the role of groom and if he’d look good in an Elvis costume, and if I don’t think he could pull it off, I discount him immediately (have I mentioned how ambivalent to marriage I am)

– I do a social media trawl so deep that I wind up in a labyrinth of pictures and posts and can’t find my way back.

– I have put myself in places I know they frequent in the hope of running into them, and then ignored them when I do.

– I write a blog detailing all my emotions and thoughts

But are those things red flags? Do these actions that may be considered crazy to men really those of somebody imbalanced? Or is it rather a perception that an inability to manage and control emotions is a bad thing and so we should all walk round like robots? I wonder what my male friend thinks the appropriate adjective for his fellow males of the same categories is? A player? A flake? Emotionally unavailable? Has high standards? High maintenance? A pest? Abusive?

Some of those may well be fitting, but for the majority….

If he’s single, fit and handsome he’s a big fat scaredy cat. I’m going to start calling this Alpha Pussy.

The Wedding Planner…

I’ve never considered myself to be the marrying type. I’m not really traditional like that and to be honest, I don’t have a single positive role model in my life that makes me really want to get hitched. I actually really value the ‘til death us do part’ vow and i’ve never met a man who I have been absolutely sure I’d want to spend my life with. I mean I was engaged to son’s dad, but honestly…thank fuck that didn’t happen. Close call. Phew! That said, I’ve planned the wedding…partly because I like to get carried away with myself whenever a new love interest comes along, but mostly because I like to entertain myself and then laugh my ass off at the sheer audacity of my imagination…Looooooool.

Truth be told, whether this is football dad or some other hunk O’ junk that leads me down the aisle; if it ain’t this, I don’t want it….

The two of us (and children only) jet off somewhere hot and exotic. We marry on a beach next to the sea, waves gently lapping against the shore. We are bare foot. Football dad, I mean groom 👀 wears a light grey suit and white shirt with open collar. I’m wearing a floaty backless dress and lashings of factor 50 (I am a red head after all). Our children are wearing smart shorts and Hawaiian shirts or floaty coral dresses.

The priest/minister asks us our vows, we include independence and respect in them because that’s all we really need as a couple; respect for each other and the life that we will lead. A simple ceremony sealing our commitment to each other and then we walk away hands in hands (with the children) for al fresco dining of fresh fish, fruit and vegetables. Steel band music is playing in the background as we eat and toast our mini celebration. We spend the day laughing, playing games on the beach and just enjoying the quality time together as a new family. I’ve just become Mrs Football Dad. Goddamnit. I mean Mrs Hunk O’ Junk.

As the evening draws in, we move back to our amazing suite with private swimming pool and Jacuzzi. The kids entertain themselves and we sit with our favourite cocktails elated at the fact that this is forever.

Back home, we have a big party celebration planned with all our wonderful friends and family. It’s summer and it’s in a barn, with hay bales and a maypole. Our wedding ceremony is playing out on a large screen in photos. We don’t have a honeymoon yet, that comes later as a surprise anniversary gift when the kids are adults. Our friends and family are dancing, drinking, eating, laughing. We are in our wedding clothes again and we first dance to Branches version of ‘I believe in a thing called Love’. People start to join in and we all twirl around the dance floor. We have hired a BBQ truck and people help themselves to lashing of smoked fish, meat and vegetables. The music turns uptempo and the dancing really starts. My father/daughter dance is a jive to Johnny B Goode. After this, a chair is pulled up in the middle of the dance floor and I’m made to sit it in. The barn goes quiet. I have no idea what is going on (ignore the fact I’m planning this)…. The twangs of guitars start up and a bass and I hear ‘we’re caught in a trap’ being sang from somewhere I can’t see. I look around and just see faces of guests smile knowingly; I’m definitely the last to know. The crowds part as the first verse is sang and before me stands my new husband, dressed up as Elvis giving me a Las Vegas-esque rendition of Suspicious Minds. I’m floored. Is this really happening? I’m getting my own personal Elvis gig!!!!

And it’s not just one song, I’m handed a single red rose as I get a medley of my Idols songs. I start to dance and the crowd joins in. Mr Footba… Hunk O’ Junk laps up the attention and pulls Elvis dance moves that makes me want to rip his clothes of there and then. Everybody is dancing and joining in, the band takes over the vocals as my husband takes my hand and dances the rest of the medley with me. This is the happiest I have ever been in my entire life and I didn’t think I could love him (husband) even more.

The night continues and everybody is merry. Cameras flash and fireworks boom. The kids are staying with grandparents, Football Dad (OK, I give in!!) and I say our goodbyes as we ride off into the night, I want him all to myself, he’s not the only one with a performance planned tonight…..

P.S. Thank god for this blog as an outlet for all my crazy…I have no idea how I’m going to be able to allow a relationship to burn slowly, I’m really, truly, honestly just not made that way!