Can Sparkles And Smiles Hide How Scared I Am?

I wrote this a couple of weeks ago…before that big night out with Jack – our first public event together as a couple.

ayI have had a lot of time to plan for my first official public outing with Jack. I have been watching what I eat for a while. I have been trying to walk everywhere instead of catching the bus. Jack has done a lot of walking with me too.

I am not overly obsessed with the way I look. So long as I am clean and tidy – I am happy. Somebody said to me many years ago, many people (he said especially women) are so concerned with the way they themselves look, they don’t pay all that much attention to the way you are looking. That is perhaps a bit debatable, but I realized that as a teenager, I spent most of my time worrying about the way I looked, rather than the way anyone else’s appearance, So, I told myself there is a lot of truth in what my friend said – and I should not become obsessive about the way I look.

here we go aainBut the thing is…being in public with Jack means something I hate! It means cameras! I hate seeing myself in photographs. That is why I have been being more strict with myself than usual.

Anyway…Jack has brought me tremendous peace of mind and joy of heart these past few months. I am sure all of that internal healing has been better for my complexion and confidence than any amount dieting or exercise.

So…in planning for our first public outing, all I needed was a dress. I love my friends…we have had fun trying things on me and one of my gorgeous friends lent me a sparkly dress (which I would probably never have looked at in a shop myself). But in the end I have chosen to wear a Ted Baker dress I found in a charity shop a while ago. It is more my thing, navy blue with gorgeous flowers on it. Nonetheless, I will sparkle in it! Wearing a beautiful dress is another helpful way to feel a bit less terrified!

I just hope I make Jack proud. That’s all that matters! It’s a huge deal in my head at the moment. In fact…I am so super scared, I think I am going to schedule this post to be published after the event. I can’t think about it at the moment. It’s all so daunting. I keep telling myself, just think of Jack, just enjoy being next to him.

It will be all be over after a few hours of smiling and chatting. Ugh! Here we go!

I Interrupted Him Inadvertently

done it.jpgJack was trying to be serious. I interrupted him!

We were at an event. Everything was going well, so I thought. He and I posing together – yes together. He had his arm around my waist at some points. Other times he was just holding my hand. That was just outside. Then inside the venue, it was just one conversation to the next, with him introducing me to people when they greeted him.

It was something I hadn’t really thought about before. We hadn’t even discussed it. When he introduced me to people, he said: “This is my Melody.” He didn’t say this is my friend, or this is my girlfriend, or this is my partner, or anything like that. This is my Melody. Hmm. I think I like that. I think I like that a lot.

events1It was all very exciting. I enjoyed chatting with the people I met. I am at ease with people, even strangers, it’s not something I feel too nervous about. As the event itself was starting, I felt a pride at where we sat and the way he left nobody around us in any doubt that we were “together”. I could tell there were numerous glances coming our way. We chatted and clapped and squeezed each other throughout the program.

Several hours later, we were amongst a crowd who were enjoying what was turning into a pretty decent party, (well, for a large event) and there was music. People who had been at the event were dancing. Jack and I were up for dancing. But as we were walking towards the other dancers, he whispered something to me. I couldn’t hear him though. It was just too noisy. But he was looking at me intensely. I wish I had heard him. He asked me what I thought. My reply was “think of what?” He gave me an odd look. Maybe he realized I hadn’t heard his whispered remark, maybe he didn’t.

done it1.jpgAnyway…it was just too noisy. If it was something important, or meaningful, I hope he keeps it on ice, because I couldn’t understand half of what he said to me that night. Instead, I gave it my all on the dance-floor (which is something I do) and left him laughing and trying to keep up with me. Apparently what we were doing later that night is called “PDA”. How unromantic!

Jack has been showing me photos he has taken of the two of us and asked me to choose which one I like best. He is going to post whichever I choose on his Instagram account. Big step! He thinks it is a good idea to do that now, just before he goes away for a few weeks. By the time he is back, people will perhaps have forgotten all about it, we will be able to enjoy each other’s company without intrusion.

cuppley.jpgI’m just going to have to trust him. I hate the idea of social media being a way for strangers to possibly spoil something that is personal between he and I. But I was thinking about the volume of noise and the music at that event. I need to try to block out everything else and focus on Jack. I need to listen to him whispering reassurances to me, and not be freaked out by anything horrid that comes back to me, I am not going to let myself look at any comments on his Instagram account or anything else about him online.

He is flying out to the Middle East in a couple of days, I won’t see him before then. I am going to use the time he is away to spend some time with friends I have been neglecting because of all the time I have spent with Jack and tell them all about what has been happening.

fun and games.jpgI will miss him tremendously. I have become so used to Jack being a part of, and the highlight of every week. We can still talk on the phone and e-mail. He has another assignment overseas not long after he gets back. We will only have two weeks in between. During those two weeks, there are a couple of large public events he and I will attend together. Now I know exactly what to expect, it will be easier to be prepared. Better to try to enjoy it than have to endure it.

And I hope that when he is back, he remembers whatever he whispered to me the other night, and remembers to whisper it to me again sometime when it is quieter and we are alone. Because I think he was saying something serious to me, and I inadvertently interrupted him in my rush to get to the dancefloor.

Wish I Was There

I have the cutest card. It has a Costa Rican frog on the front of it. I decided I am going to use it to write a letter to Goldfinch.

Tree Frog, Frog, Red Eyed, Amphibian

But my head is full of all sorts of things that he won’t want to read about:

  • medical issues from work
  • boring training I have been undertaking
  • the royal family drama, I’m not interested in that, he won’t be. I know his solution for the royal family!
  • the new cereal iI found for breakfast
  • the lovely dress I wore at the weekend
  • the dinner and dance charity awards night I attended with Jack

That leaves me with Russia. he is interested in Russia. he has been there, I think he has lived there. There is someone very special to him out there. But he won’t really want me writing about Russia.

Beach, Sunset, Coast, Costa Rica

There is so much in my heart for him…but I suddenly find that I am not sure what he will want to read, what he will want to know. That scares me. It is hard enough coping with the 10,100 mile distance. I can’t bear the thought of any other kind of distance between us. I love him!!!

I guess what I want to write is that…

…I wish I was with him. I wish I could watch sunsets with him, walk hand-in-hand across beaches with him, curl up in a hammock with him. But I can’t write those words.

I am going to talk to Jack about it. Jack is so kind when I talk to him about Goldfinch. He will know what I should write.

I’m His

sad little annie xWell…I am publishing this post in advance – kind of busy the moment as I imagine many of you will be too! With both myself and many of my family having worked most bank holidays because we work in healthcare, I would like to give a shout out to all those who work while others relax. In addition to the grafters, I am also mindful of those who will spend today all alone by now choice of their own. It’s a weird time of year, and I know many struggle with it.

Today has been looming in my mind for a while. By the time this post has been published, my parents and siblings and their marriage mates will all be aware that for the past few months “Jack” and I have been courting.

bewildered1

I am expecting that initially they won’t believe me! I think they are going to be quite bewildered. Mandy and Milly will finally acknowledge that they always thought there was an attraction between Jack and I in the past,

lightsJack will also have told his parents and his siblings who he is with at the moment. Ironically, we are both away from London. I am splitting the holidays up between North Wales and the North of England. I will be just over an hour away from Jack’s family. But in spirit we are together! Ha! Well…maybe anyway! We won’t see each other though until we are back in London. I have to go back first for work. He will be in London a few days later. I am sure we will have a very fond reunion with lots to talk about!

We will have a couple of weeks to mention to close friends what has been going on, before our first public event together. Life is going to get very interesting!

He is mine and I am his! Going to try not to worry about anything else for now! Going to try not to worry about what my family and friends might say that might be hard to hear. Decisions are on the horizon, but I am happy for them to stay on the horizon for now, because they might be too difficult to face quite yet.

It just feels so right.

One Day At A Time

platonic3It’s funny how a relationship develops once two people start to spend time together.

That is the the mistake (well, one of the mistakes we made years ago): we didn’t make time to be together properly. We perhaps thought we were together frequently anyway. Afterall we were living in the same home.

But we were always with other people, our flat mates and the many visitors that poured in. There was always something going on in our home. People loved to just pop in. We were all very sociable, so it was fine. But of course it meant he and I were not having the kind of conversations that we have been able to have recently.

platonicHe and I were often at the same social events, large and small. We have been invited over for dinner by close friends (I am sure they were trying to matchmake us) and we have sat besides each other watching movies at the homes of friends. We have sat so close that we were touching. But at the time, that was all. There was nothing we could do about it.

But we did not have chance to really spend time together, just us. We didn’t talk openly. The two occasions we did have private conversations were very intense, too intense really. You might remember that one of them involved a kitchen knife and tears! Aaaah sigh – trying to forget all those awful memories.

platonic2But now…things have changed. Our relationship has developed rapidly. It is all because we made time, and we are both super-busy (him more so at the moment) to be together. We have had to plan a lot. We had to travel away from our homes to be together, because we didn’t want our friends to realize what was going on too early.

I can’t wait for our close friends to know. i want to spend time with them, Jack and me as a couple with our other friends, some of whom are single, some of whom are married or in a courtship.

platonic1But until the news breaks, it has been fun for us to just be together on our own. It has been dun. Jack is fun – it is his default setting. I am very fun-loving too, which is probably why I love being with him. It could so easily have been too intense with so much from the past to discuss and straighten out. But Jack has been very good at closing down conversations that were getting nowhere and getting me to agree that we would discuss it later. He has made sure that we had fun whenever we were together. Whenever we parted, I wanted more of him.

platonic7During our time together, we have got to know even more about each other. I think we did know each other pretty well. But of course it’s been over four years we have had no contact. So there has been a lot to update each other on. Also Jack has seen the health concerns I have since my head injuries. I have had to fill him in on everything that has happened and prepare him for what to do when I have black-outs.

I feel as if we are a real couple. It doesn’t seem like a game. I was scared at one stage incase this was some kind of game, terrified in case Jack was trying to prove something. But those worries are long gone.

platonic5We have done a lot of relaxing together. That is partly because we have been indoors a lot, mostly at places he hired. We have rested and snuggled up on sofas that didn’t belong to either of us.

We have had plenty of evenings in, whole days in, playing cards, board-games, listening to music and watching movies. All kind of uneventful, but it was the togetherness that mattered. Just to be with each other. During that time important conversations have occurred naturally and spontaneously. We have had a lot to talk about. But it has usually been while we were relaxing, which was helpful.

platonic4We have eaten together. I remember reading years ago that eating with someone draws you closer to them. I think it does. I don’t think someone quite crosses the border into real friendship until you have scoffed food together. We have eaten breakfast, lunch and dinner together. We have had snacks in bed.

We have cooked together too. I have baked for him, he has loved everything I have made. We have washed dishes together (which was something extremely hilarious to both of us after that caused so much contention in the past!) He used to make a mess of the kitchen, leave it for the rest of the day. I used to clear up after him. He would tell me after I had cleaned that I should not have and he would have done it.

platonic8He has an idea of us going on holiday together at some point. I don’t know when that will be. But he thinks it would be a good idea to travel together.

The life of an international volunteer involves a lot of travel. At the moment, I don’t think they will allow me that assignment until I stop having black-outs. But we can see how things go. But he still wants us to try travelling together at some point, just for a holiday rather than a work assignment. That will be lovely – I think.

platonic6We have spent a lot of time in his car. He has driven me to nearby Wales, so that I could visit my family. He has also driven us out into the neighbouring counties to London for overnight stays at different holiday cottages and lodges. Even when we were stuck in a car, it’s all been important. Time together. Time to talk and laugh. Time to listen to music and sing together. Time to be silent and just hold hands. All of that time together on our own counted. It was all important. So although it may have seemed silly at times, him asking me to be somewhere earlier than we had originally planned, he knew that it meant extra time together. That is exactly what we needed.

platonic9Of course the intimate time together has also been important. Without sharing too much. It was strange at first. We have know each other for so long! And although now it seems safe to say we had major crushes on each other, we couldn’t do anything about it. We were so awkward back then. Then came the estrangement,

So the first time we touched each other was a bit weird. It started with just holding hands of course – as it always should. And that first kiss – my stomach in nervous knots. I was so nervous, I couldn’t enjoy it., I don;t know if he felt the same way. And then actually being on our own in the bedroom of a cottage he hired – it was weird at first.

platonic0But it’s not weird anymore. Not at all. Suddenly it feels as if it was always this way. As if there was never any awkwardness, as if there was never any estrangement. It is just as it should be. It can be anything we want it to be. Sometimes cozy and slow. Sometimes teasing and playful. Sometimes hungry and ardent. Sometimes…well, let’s stop there. It’s between him and I.

But it’s all developed because we gave time to each other. Time alone. It’s developed one day at a time. So although it feels very quickly, it has actually been due to a lot of time we made for each other. “Time – that’s the stuff life is made of”, said a very clever person. They also say “time is money”. That doesn’t mean much to me, but Jack could have been using his spare time (outside all the charity commitments he has) to earn money. But he has given up his spare time to be with me.

supportive coupleNothing really can replace time together. Don’t be fooled into thinking gifts or compliments can suffice. So whether it is friendships or family relationships or if you are in a romantic relationship – make sure that you spend time together with your loved ones. It all counts – even being in the car together. There is nothing that can beat spending time together.

I never understood how much Jack wanted to be with me years ago. He said his biggest mistake was thinking that be and I were getting to know each other all that time we spent with other people. Maybe we were learning a lot about each other. But a relationship was not forming. He said he was longing for something to happen. But he didn’t know that people were telling me that Jack didn’t like me, that he hated me, that he couldn’t stand living with me. So he did not realize that I was pained throughout the time with him, interpreting everything as a sign he disliked me. How wrong I was! But now we have spent time together – now I understand at long last how he feels, and how he felt back then.

 

 

Letting Go Of All That Went Before

rob and annie 8He and I have been having fun, but from time to time we have had a serious discussion about the past. Some of what we have discussed has been easy-ish. I have asked him questions, he has asked me for questions. Hearing each other’s explanations has been helpful. We have both found the replies we have received made sense of things and we were satisfied,

However, there are some things, which neither of us have a real explanation for. We just had both at times lost control of our feelings, and spoke out of turn, and behaved badly. Both of us did that. It was a pressure cooker back then. It was very intense. We both made mistakes.

We have both expressed sorrow and regret over what we bear responsibility for. It’s been up to us to decide whether we could let the past go, whether we could forgive. Ignore the mention of marriage in the quote below (we are not rushing into that quite yet):

making it.jpg

Goldfinch said to me a while ago that he was scratching his head wondering at my powers of forgiveness. But Jack has a lot to forgive me for too. We hurt each other back then. But I think we have both agreed that the reason why we lost control and said and did hurtful things, was that we had strong feelings for each other, which we couldn’t act on at the time because of the huge invasion of privacy that surrounded us.

I am more than ready to let the past go. Why would I want it to dominate and dictate my future? All I want to do is draw closer and closer to Jack, to let trust and love flourish. I can only hope he feels exactly the same way about me.

I’m His Venus!

Last week I talked about how I felt a bit like Pluto in my orbit around the man who has been at the center of my thoughts. Sigh!

rob and annie7Of course my love life took a sharp turn in a different direction these past few months. I should not compare the two of them. But I will say this about “Jack” – he wears his heart on his sleeve even more than I do! He can’t hide how he is feeling, it’s so obvious looking at him. It means a lot that he seems completely wrapped up in me.

Already I can see that I am at the center of his thoughts. There is no issue with distance. Currently, we live on opposite sides of London, but we are able to make it work. We are spending a considerable amount of time together, and so far we have managed to do so with such discretion that nobody seems to have realized Jack has a girlfriend, and if anyone did suspect that was the case, nobody is aware that it is me.

hisHe seems to think about me a lot. We talk everyday in addition to text messages or e-mails. He has planned all sorts for us. Almost everything we have done together was suggested by Jack. I need to start coming up with more ideas for dates together. He sends me links to songs he wants me to listen. I asked him why he wears so much black (he always did) and the next weekend he had a grey jacket. It suited him so much more than black. He has bought me flowers, he has (tried to make is perhaps more accurate) made me pancakes, he has bought me earrings (I am forever losing earrings!) and he has not bought me what I didn’t want – chocolates, because that would make me put weight on.

chris textingMost importantly, he has listened to what is very important to me. He has not dropped any hints or posted anything on Instagram (or any other social media as far as I know) that would raise any suspicions. He seems to respect how important it is to me that we have this time for just the two of us, and can then tell our families, before he launches his news on social media.

In general Jack is just doing a wonderful job of making me feel loved, cherished and key to his happiness. When we lived together, I was much more in shape – I was so active and hardly eating, I was attracting a lot of attention because of my slender body with the same large bosom I have had since I was ten. I remember him gazing at me often back then. But now, I am not that shape. I have love handles! But he is still making me feel very desirable.

his1.png

I should not compare the two, the distance was an enormous challenge that meant it was always going to be hard to feel loved and cherished. But with Jack, it’s not just the geographic proximity…it’s other ways too. He makes me feel very close to him. He makes me feel as if I am at the center of his thoughts, at the center of his life. Jack makes me feel as if I am his Venus!