I’ve never met a a strong person with an easy past.Atticus
It’s hard to know where to begin with this post. I’ve been thinking about deleting my older posts and starting form scratch but I feel as though they illustrate my journey rather well up to this point. It’s the first in a while and skips past a rather large and important chunk of life in the past year. So I’ll have to briefly re-cap for any of it to make sense.
Previously.. ‘Time for a bit of self love’
This did not go to plan. And my last post was not in regards to my most recent breakup. No that was only 8 days ago and the hardest yet because your girl did not practise what she preached. No sir.
Since my last post I met a guy on a dating app and fell into a relationship very quickly. In fact, so fast that he suggested I leave my studio and move in within him. Of course me being me I jumped at this chance. Because hell – I love, love!
Skipping through the next few months it played out exactly how most therapists would probably have predicted. We had some incredible times and for the most part things were good – but when they were bad, they were really bad.
Navigating Relationships in a Pandemic
To paint the scene it’s 2020 and COVID is at it’s peak. London is more often in lock down than not and everyone felt – and still feel, very off kilter. A lot of people have lost jobs, homes, friends, family, and suddenly London has become a very lonely city, whilst still being full of people.
Add to this that I think I have always used relationships as an escape. An escape from myself, my head, my thoughts and my ‘reality’. Looking back now I don’t think I’ve ever truly been happy on my own, with myself or about myself. So it’s a tough ask to then be in a happy relationship with anyone without these ‘issues’ rearing their ugly head.
So what does this look like? Well 90% of the time I am a funny, loving, caring woman who wants nothing but the best for everyone. I’ve always tried to be as open and honest as possible and have peoples best intentions at heart.
But then I drink.
And sometimes when I do a lot of this unhappiness, past trauma and whatever other issues life has thrown my way likes to rear their ugly head. A lot of the time I wont even remember it the next day, but I can imagine this is not easy for a loving partner to bear witness to.
Now I’m not saying that this makes me a bad person. I know that as people go, I’m one of the good ones. But it’s unfortunate it’s taken this long for me to realise the problem, and what I need to do to fix it.
Can you work on yourself when you’re in a relationship?
Sure. But it would take a very strong partner to support you and to see past it, not say that they don’t want to be with you if you no longer drink, not add fuel to the fire when they can see you’re hurting, not punishing you the next day and not speaking to you, and not using it against you as a weapon. Especially not preaching about the help you need, but not living by their own advice.
Instead, supporting you in a sober safe environment, perhaps taking some space, both partaking in therapy, communicating, and seeing the person not the problem. And perhaps, even admit that they too are a work in progress. Yes then perhaps it could be possible. I am not saying that your partner owes you anything, or even has to stand by you if they feel it’s too much. But they should always show you the very basic humility to separate in a calm, safe and timely fashion.
Sadly this was not the case for me, and I spent the last week or so in a deep almost suffocating depression. I cried like I have never cried before and I couldn’t stomach food for days. But after this ‘detox’ small glimmers of light start to return along side the clarity and truth of the situation. So rather than seeing this as a mistake or punishment, I choose to see it as a gift. I now have my own space to choose what I want from my life with intention.
How I intend to move forward in 2021 through intention
- Choose who I give my energy to and have in my life. Do they bring positivity and support? Do they have my best intentions? Do I bring anything to them? Is there mutual respect and understanding? If the answer is ‘Yes’ to all of the above, then it’s a healthy relationship.
- Be open to bringing new people into my life. I have already fulfilled this twice this week. Im dating friends not jumping into another man’s arms for support. Above all though, I’m dating myself.
- Stop feeding the fear that you won’t have enough. By this I mean stop working in that sales job you hate just for the money. It will never fulfil you. This week I am going to pursue other opportunities from which I can actually gain some purpose.
- Support others. I am part of various online groups for people struggling with issues such as alcoholism and such and really value the time many of their members have taken to write to me in my times of need. But also being open and sharing my thoughts and experiences to support others.
- Minimalism. I have always lived quite light but as I start to unpack my life in my room in this shared house I now live in, I only intend to keep the items which I really have a use for and see value in. The rest can be sold or given to charity. This is something I have always believed in.
- Stop taking part in activities which are detrimental to my physical or mental health. This means drugs and alcohol mainly. I still can’t say if this is something I will stick to forever, or simply something I need to do to find my happy place. People talk about moderation. But I believe this is only possible once you’re happy with yourself, and surrounded by caring people.
- Being self aware and changing negative learned behaviours.
- Be more creative – this should come as a result of the previous points.
- Continue therapy
- Continue with fitness
- Continue with a healthy diet
- Value yourself
- Live with gratitude
- Love love love
So thank you 2020, without you my head would still be buried in the sand.
For that, I am truly grateful.