November gets off to a sad start. For various reasons, I decide to call time on the relationship with the rather nice man I met several weeks ago. Everything tells me it’s a sensible decision. Everything tells me it’s the right decision. But it is very much a decision of the head; and that can’t stop my little heart from plummeting into the depths of missing and loss for a few days.
I miss his smile. I miss his lovely voice. I miss our long chats about nothing and nonsense. I miss feeling special. For now I just feel pretty down … and I know that I have probably made the rather nice man feel pretty down too. Breaking up, as a teenager or a middle-aged mum, it’s just never good!
I know I’ll shake it, but for this week I’m allowed to be sad. Let’s face it, if you don’t care enough to cry…what is the point?
October arrives this week. As I awake to icy mornings and the central heating clicking into gear, my thoughts turn to the challenge of turning up the temperature in other areas of my life too!
Very unexpectedly, quite out of the blue, I have recently met a rather nice man. It’s very, very early days, but he does make me smile … quite a lot. I’ll even confess that occasionally, as I come off the phone I have even found myself feeling a little dreamy, warm and fuzzy too. Now youngsters, block your revolted ears, but older readers, possibly having to contemplate a new relationship, take heart from my next relevation. Whilst marital break-up isn’t an experience I’d wish on anyone, one upside, of being flung back into world of dating in later life, has been the discovery that love, romance and that initial spark of connection, are every bit as exciting in middle age as they were in my younger years. The reflection in the mirror may well show the ravages of time but on the inside … we are all still in our mid-twenties!
But I digress, back to the rather nice man. We have managed a couple of outings, but I fear, I really do, for our fledgling relationship ever really taking flight … because it is so blinkin’ difficult to meet up as a single parent! With my ex due to visit, this Saturday was supposed to be a night of togetherness, but ex-hub has just called to tell me that he is ‘busy’. ‘Busy?’ I’d like to too busy to look after ‘our’, children until I have a gap in the diary, just once in a while! And my beloved teens don’t help the situation either. Is it just my offspring, or do all children assume that a mum’s only goal and motivation in life is to run them, fund them, and organise weekend life around them and their social lives?
“I just assumed you would be able to pick me up from my party mum!”
was my eldest’s response when I suggested that I might be out on Saturday night.
I put it off, but eventually do call, apologetically, to explain my dilemma and brace myself for the brush off. But the rather nice man, who is very laid back and incredibly considerate simply says ‘Wherever and whenever you can”, as we rearrange our plans. And I am sure that a mid afternoon movie will be great. It’s just that, at the risk of sounding like a complete floozy, I had hoped for a little more from my Saturday night!
Could I invite him here? I think not, far too soon. I have no intention of parading any men around the home and into the teens’ world, until I am sure of how I feel about them. But how do I ever get to that stage? It’s a veritable, vicious circle and I am not sure there’s a way out. I turn to alcohol. I turn to music. And on comes Depeche Mode “I just can’t get enough” ….it speaks to me on many levels!!
Woohoo, following a few false starts, with my tentative steps back into the dating world, I go out on a really great date!
We do theatre, we do roof-top drinks, we do food but above all we do laughter, at some points I am actually shaking with unstoppable laughter. My date is clever, easy to talk to and incredibly funny. He also does flowers, such a large bouquet in fact, that the waitress notices them and asks me the occasion. I nonchalantly fib that it’s my birthday and only blush slightly when, at the end of the meal, a large slice of birthday cake appears and the restaurant hears me serenaded with an Asian chorus of birthday song!
Fun-filled as the evening is, that’s where this liaison ends. For several reasons there is no romantic ending to relay. Nonetheless, it leaves a lasting impression because it reminds me of how much I love the company of an intelligent and cultured man who makes me smile and, more than that, makes me feel comfortable with being myself. Because I find that I am funny too, in fact I had forgotten how many great stories and anecdotes I have gathered over the years.
It’s fantastic being a mum and it brings me lots of happiness, but it’s terrific to just be yourself on occasion too, and to reminisce about your own childhood … with someone who was also alive back then! Some of my stories remind me of the amazing friends I have journeyed through life with … and I have not been in touch with some of them for ages. I think it’s time to reconnect and I do. I spend a very happy evening messaging some old pals, even finally embracing the 21st Century world of Apps to reach the more far-flung. It’s a joyful experience and the wonders of new technology suddenly make the world feel like a much smaller, funnier and more friend-filled place. Now that has to be a lasting and lovely legacy of a great night out. As for the Gothic Spires…well that’s a private joke….