Trying to deserve love

This is my last post in my red coat.
My feelings have been all over the place over the last two weeks. Feelings invoked by others lives and experiences and bravery. Hearing them revealing their deepest sadness and memories. My own memories of watching someone’s courage in their most vulnerable moment that will never leave my mind. An honesty of feeling that I have been too afraid to get to. Embarrassed to say it all out loud knowing how stupid and ridiculous it makes me. Like a stupid little girl caught in the world of grown ups and not being prepared for that.

Something about my night on Saturday with my angels cemented something really important for me.
Why was I feeling so high on life again. Financially I’m poorer than I’ve ever been, I’ve been working harder than I’ve ever worked and I’ve never struggled so much to try to help people I love and care about to find the way to happier places. As I take every little step on a brand new day, trying to make some good difference in the world, to repay all my bad, I feel like I need take back my feelings and lock them away again.
I felt high with my girls on Saturday because they know all the bad stuff about me but they still love me anyways. It makes me feel like the luckiest girl in the world. Despite the fact that I don’t love myself at all. I could spend a lifetime trying to do good but it will never take away the guilt I feel in doing bad and hurting others I care about. It will never make me feel like the person I remember once being. Who was good and kind and always did the right thing. This girl is ugly and doesn’t deserve to be happy. And yet as I walked back from the pub I felt so happy. I felt so high on life. I felt so lucky. The luckiest girl in the world. A feeling I have often in moments and especially when I am with them. And I shared it with the person that I love.

Even though I have known for a long time that I am not a person loved by them. I knew it more recently in a moment I was told about a mirror version of where it started for me.
A replica version of the same experience. Finding closeness in another’s vulnerability. Another person with issues.
Becoming the dream against the real. Will she find herself feeling like me at some point. Wondering what is wrong with her. Not loving herself anymore either. I hope not.

My heart was completely open to them. Still is. Always will be. Whilst theirs is constantly looking for something for a moment until something new and better comes along.
Unfortunately I can’t just switch my feelings on and off. I know how I feel in matters of love. What a dangerous place to find myself in my biggest moment of vulnerability since being a little girl. Feeling completely out of control at that point in time.
A drunken moment but one that was fuelled by feelings that had sat with me when I had first walked through that door. A feeling I shared with my friend at the time. It took very little to find me in a place, so out of my depth, that would impact my life and the lives of others I love with such force that finding my way through this minefield to a place that feels completely safe is still ongoing.
I have to look at the destruction of that security that is of my making every single day but try to look beyond it and see all the beauty instead. It is my mission as soon as I open my eyes.
It’s not like others who care about me didn’t warn me. It’s not like he didn’t warm me. But of course I’m miss unconditional love.
I knew him. I saw more. I saw what sat underneath all that external charm. A beautiful person. A complicated person. A person that has so many wonderful qualities. A person that I see beyond all the smoke and mirrors. A persons who essence is what I love and warm to in all their complete differences. Beautiful inside and out and who I love more than I ever imagined possible.
Two people that know us both, on two different occasions in the last 2 months said to me “I always thought you two had something special”.
“We are just friends”. I said. What I wanted to say was “Yeah I thought it was something special too. Am I the archetypal fool in love”

Every person close to me told me; you are just another in a long line of girls that show up in a moment until you are no longer required.
I must look so stupid to them.I know I feel it everyday.
But I loved this person in a way that I never had previously and I couldn’t pretend. It felt wrong to just pretend. I couldn’t do what others do and have that bit on the side for a minute. I’m not made that way. Fairytale pure. It was all or nothing.
But I did know. Not long after that moment I went all in I realised that I became the nothing. And yet they carried on getting to know me. As I struggled with the life changing decision I made in the name of love and trying to do the right thing I found myself completely alone and swimming out at sea. Finding myself in the darkest of places that left me struggling to know who I was anymore.
You would think at that point I would have realised. And yet my heart was completely in charge. I knew what I felt. It’s not like I have that feeling every day. It was different. I say I had felt that lightning bolt before. That is a lie. I hadn’t. Only in that moment did I feel it and I knew what it was.
As I write this I know I must sound so stupid. I’m embarrassed to be made how I’m made. But this is what my heart looks like and I’m laying it completely bare. Laugh if you like. I don’t care. This is the heart that fuels me every day of my life. It’s how I’m made. How silly that must look to others. And yet This is who I am.
I need to be completely truthful in every possible way with myself. I’m desperately trying to forgive myself for all that I have got so very wrong. I’m not the only person who has been hurt in this. I can’t undo their hurt as hard as I try. But I am trying to undo my own otherwise it will eat me from the inside out.
You can run from yourself but you can never hide.

I know the realness of a love that is made of more.
Love that is more than a dreamy fantasy made of good times and happiness.
I saw it tonight when P”s dad came for dinner.
The man that was once full of “bunny” but now looks lost and broken. Lost without his love. The love that withstood all of those challenges that they faced through the years. Love that looked so ordinary in comparison to the glitter of others lives.
And yet that love was everything. It was the reason that made life worth living. A partnership that made all those sacrifices required to build a life together
Two sides of the same coin. Knowing each other’s faults but loving each other anyways. Safe in the knowledge that whatever life threw at them they always had each other. No one else would do.
I see and hear his guilt in having forgotten that in moments and wishing he could change it. I am seeing it in P in knowing that he can. I am seeing it in myself. Struggling to get to that place but trying. I could not ask for more right now than just to try.
In moments I remember beautiful times spent over the past few years but where I was always left feeling like there was always something better in a new place or a new moment. Where they felt completely safe with me, because what I felt was real and genuine and pure, I felt the opposite in not being anything special.
I knew I was nothing more than a passing interest. Just someone new. Before something newer and more interesting would become the new thing of the moment. Perhaps I was the equivalent of that new and interesting at one point.
I think in my moment of sadness I wasn’t prepared in being swept up in the easiness of what appeared so very beautiful. Maybe I would have been stronger and my good girl would have told me that I would be in way deeper than I could manage.
I couldn’t manage it.

But of course I couldn’t see beyond a person I had always imagined.
A love I had always imagined.
Love that conquers all. Love that is fought for. Love that makes you feel like there is no one else on the planet.
Love that matches the intensity of my feelings and is not scared of them.
I was prepared to be all of those. I know how to be that when I love. I was prepared to risk everything for it.
Like being under a spell.
Perhaps I never really had anything to compare it to. I’m not a girl that has spent a life playing the field I wondered if i was settling for less than I should.
That in not exuding that confidence in being strong, independent and loud that I was somehow accepting less. That in being the person that P placed all his anger and frustrations of life on made me weak and not as good as others.

And yet what I’ve found in trying harder is that I appreciate every little thing in life even more because it means something. it has so much more worth.
Those little things make my heart flutter and my soul soar.
Feeling like all my efforts and shows of love are appreciated beyond a passing fancy. They are treasured just because they are given by me.
And as hard as that feels sometimes in the moments that they are sad and frustrated, I know they are seen and felt. Like little bricks rebuilding a life that was broken. A life I feel responsible for breaking.
A life that exists in the real and is now filled with harsh realities that are felt on a practical level.
I don’t care for me. But I do care for them.

As I chatted on Saturday with my angels about all sorts of things I remembered how very wonderful my life has been. How lucky I have been. How many things I have done through the years that seemed out of my reach as a kid.
That despite the fact that I haven’t travelled the world or had lots of different men, or had a multitude of amazing experiences that make me a gold mine of intellectual chat, I have felt loved and happy. I would feel content that I had a wonderful life if I took my last breath today. Which means that every moment that follows is a beautiful bonus. A day in the life of, to be treasured in all its simple beauty.

What makes me bad? I fell in love. Dreamy love. I felt it at its most pure and basic level.
A love that is made of friendship. That has felt so special because it was the friend that I had always wished for.
But actually for me it was and will always be so much more. It will always feel like more to me. As hard as I try to pretend it wasn’t and isn’t, I know my own feelings. I would never have risked so much for less. It is a more that sits quietly and deeply in my heart. Kept in a really special place. Itlights up my smile in those moments they appear in my world. Sometimes I wish they didn’t. I wish I could disappear and not be reached. Life might feel so much easier that way. And yet in reality I don’t think it would. I think it would make me really sad.

I am living in the life I once chose. A life that I nearly lost. A life that is so much harder than it once was because of choices I made. I can blame none but myself. I have to live with that realisation every day and when I see how that affects others. It would feel easier if it only affected me. It is where my lack of love in myself now comes from.
But I have been given another chance. Because I am loved. Loved by someone who deserves so much better than me but who would do anything for me.
And those chances of being loved don’t come again unless they are made from real love.
I may never forgive myself for the choices I made but I have to live with them. Every single day. Perhaps one day I will feel like I deserve to be loved and deserve to be happy.
But until then I will keep trying to be good and hope that one day that will be enough.

BOOM!!!!💥

As I walked home last night I felt so very fluffy, dreamy, warm, and happy.
Full of chat in my head that could have kept me up talking all night.
Despite all the sad things of other people’s lives that have surrounded me over the past couple of weeks I have been reminded many times of how incredibly lucky I am.
Not just in what I have and who I am, but more especially in those that have meaning in my world. These things that can often seem so unimportant to others, for me are in fact the differences in grabbing this life by the scruff of the neck and saying I’m gonna make it fucking amazing no matter what life throws my way.
Bring it on!
I worked my arse off to get to this point. I dug to my very deepest depths to find my way back to this place.
A place that is constantly moving forward despite the tired wobbles that might make me pause for a moment and catch my breath. Those wobbles only ever make me rise even higher.
Because I’m living a life where I make the choices. Trying always to be a person I can feel proud of, but also not giving a shit about what someone else might think about that. I know what sits behind my choices and that’s what counts.
But I am lucky to have those special few friends that know that, and being a part of each other’s lives gives it more meaning.
Spending last night for L’s birthday was completely wonderful. My two angels that I met about ten years ago now but who are the best girlfriends I have ever had in my life. They mean so much to me.
We are all so different and yet we share something so beautiful together. It makes my little heart sing!!!
They make me laugh so much. Our conversations as we were sharing our little platters of Thai loveliness had us laughing at our own jokes in our own comedy sketch. I’m not sure anything is out of bounds and I love that. I was glad me and M rebelled against L’s wishes for no cake and not opening her presents in the restaurant.
You’re special L. Let the whole wide world know it. She hated it I’m sure, but she knows that we love her, so she forgave us anyways.
I love the easiness of being with two friends who I have history with but who also roll along parallel to me in our own very different lives.
Those different occasions we share are always something to look forward to. Always time well spent in company that is genuine, caring, mischievous and fun.
As we drank our cocktails in the randomness of The Rusty Bike we were able to share who we are individually in a familiar place of our beginnings if with a different name.
It is a friendship that has been a constant through all of our ten years worth of highs and lows.
And there is a shared view of how lucky we are in that.
I heard they are bringing back those central perk friends for a one off unscripted moment and I caught an old episode of sex and the city, the other night.
But we have our own very real and special version of what that looks like.
We like to call it Boom!!!💥💥💥

Stay

I asked 3 different people what they needed today. They all replied “comfort; kindness,; love.
And they all talked of a very basic thing in life.
A hug. All that time of training. All the cleverness that flew across that room like a competition of who knew more. Who will be the best. It doesn’t really matter.

When it comes down to basics, all 3 of them, in feeling so very alone, just wanted a hug.
For one in particular I felt that need to be more desperate. A need for such a basic show of human affection that was completely unavailable in the real world.
Out of nowhere and having said she really needed to see me, and today being at her lowest point she ended our sessions. have seen her for over a year and during that time she has tried her hardest to make changes and find happiness. But I felt her exhaustion in trying. I gave that hug. I generally don’t but I caught a feeling today. One that I couldn’t confirm and therefore holds no weight despite probing in respect of her safety. I was met with no indication in what I was feeling being right. I hope it isn’t. But I felt lit, and did everything I could think of to keep her trying. If, as I felt so strongly, she was at that point of giving up I had nothing I could give her but that long and heartfelt hug. Of course I supplied all those reminders of suport numbers and told her to contact me if she needed to and reminded her of those loved ones she has previously mentioned but feels so disconnected from.
I didn’t want to let her go. I held on to that hug for longer than I should. I gave it for two reasons today. In case it might be the difference in making her feel cared about and to keep trying , or to make her feel cared about if she doesn’t.
How I hope she will try. I care about her very much. “You matter to me” I told her.
Someone tell me how to switch that off?
In the end I know it is a persons choice. I can try but I can’t change it. But this woman who is so very very lonely is also very wonderful in so many ways.
She is feeling surrounded by others that show her no kindness, love or comfort. In fact they completely exclude her. She’s not welcome in their clique.
And despite all her efforts in doing the right thing for those she loved, she finds that she has been left with nothing to show for all her endeavours. Having absolutely nothing.

This world shows no mercy to those that don’t play the game.
It begs the question. Is there in fact nothing wrong my clients or is it just that they don’t have the strength and resilience to survive in this very unforgiving, judgemental and often very unloving world.

I started a day in a life again but carried over some happiness from the day before.
What I have realised over the last week is somehow I always find my way to happiness even amongst challenges and struggles.
I am lucky. I have people who I love and who love me back. It makes a massive difference.
And I am completely open hearted to those I love. Nothing held back. I say it exactly like i feel it and I don’t care about looking stupid, or too much, or too sugary.
Because we are all just little kids underneath in grown up bodies. We pretend to be grown up by having sex and buying houses and driving cars and having jobs and making money and all the other stuff that means very little if you don’t feel loved.
Whether that be by partners, children,  family or friends. If there is love then it doesn’t matter in what form it comes in.
Because we are still just playing. Only the game of life is just so much harder. What is a winner or a loser. That very concept means very little in the end. Feeling loved in some form, knowing that someone will provide a hug if you need it is all that really matters. Because spending day after day feeling completely alone, hurts.

When I gave that hug today it was to say you are not alone and you are loved. Please stay!

Perhaps is we all do that there will be enough hugs to go round and make everyone feel loved. ❤️

Forever Forever

What a very beautiful life I had today….
I felt it as I watched a movie with my girl tonight.
I randomly referred to pancakes this morning to someone who lights up my world anytime they come into my orbit.
They make me smile like it’s the first time I ever smiled. That sounds so silly doesn’t it. Like a grown up little girl who should know better but doesn’t care.
I dare to not care.
As I switched tubes a moment later  I found myself sitting across from a man eating pancakes.
I mean if I had been talking about apples, or woolly hats or umbrellas, It wouldn’t feel like a stretch to see in another carriage on another train on a journey I take every Thursday.
But pancakes .. on a tube train .. being covered in treacle…
I mean come on!!! 😊
A “Forever Forever” moment if ever I felt one that left me feeling alive all day long.

 

Light and Dark

I am a girl who has to feel it. I have to feel it all.
Even the sadness.
As I walked down the road this morning seeing the sun glistening in the sky it reminded me that I am alive in this word of light and darkness.
Sometimes I have to feel that darkness. To sit right in the middle of it and not be able to see beyond it, but not feel scared in it. To know that for light to exist there has to be darkness.
To know, that as I sit in that darkness, I always have the strength to rise from it.
Yesterday was J”s birthday. I thought of her a lot knowing she was with my girl, inspiring her to keep going.
Inspiration in remembering j’s greatest strength being completely visible in her moment of absolute vulnerability.
My girl came hone at 6 o’clock, exhausted but knowing she had done herself proud. That she didn’t take the easy path. She took the path that required her to dig a little deeper and reach a little higher. To show herself and others what she is made of.
To say I was bursting with pride as she fell asleep on the settee feels too small.
The girl who grows into the woman everyday. who defies what this world expects of her. As she is sold all those versions of the strong independent woman. A woman who can do everything a man can. She’s not interested in being that.
She is a woman who knows that she is a woman and owns it. Realising that In being a woman in all her understated strength and power she has the ability to be whatever whoever she wants to be.
Don’t mistake vulnerability as a weakness. It is where all our strength comes from.
To feel is the greatest strength there is. It is the difference in being alive or just existing.
We fear it because we can’t control it. It will hurt us for sure but it will also make us feel very free and alive. Free from that fear that says we are less than we are.
And in feeling her push through her fears yesterday it left me this morning rising from darkness feeling like this.
I feel very powerful today in all my gentleness and vulnerability.

The Inspirational Girl

I deleted the post below. I felt bad for feeling like this at the weekend. It was just a wobble. A moment where I was carrying so much that I felt too sad to find the bright. But when I reread it I realised it is part of what makes me human. The good and the bad and the ugly. I am all of those and proud in that. It’s what makes me real.
My girl messaged me today as she struggled. She completely froze in the middle of the room surrounded by other dancers. She knew it was all over within five minutes of beginning. She said to me “I could cry. I felt so embarrassed”
And yet she continued with the day..
Messaging every now and then for a little encouragement and love. She could have picked up her stuff and left but she pushed herself to keep trying.
What the hell. She had nothing to lose. She could just go for it, just as her, giving her best in everything she did and showing the uniqueness of who she is rather than competing with others.
It was a battle with herself.
And that has inspired the hell out of me.
Come what may it will be another of the many experiences of her life that she will draw on when life throws disappointments her way. She will remember how she felt and what she had to find to just keep trying.
I never felt prouder of the young woman she has become and as we discussed what we might have for dinner tonight I thought to myself, while you are still in it, still trying and finding more, then there is always hope.
…….

Thank goodness for the brightness of the sun today. Lord Byron’s “She walks in Beauty was given to me on Friday by the man who finds it difficult to find words of love. Sometimes I’m not sure if I’m walking at all, especially in Beauty. The weight of others lives sometimes squash me.

I entered a new persons world on Friday. I was scared to go there and for good reason. It is a world of no feeling. Like walking through a desolate land with debris scattered everywhere. It’s so dark and there is danger around every corner and with every footstep I take. I am walking along with someone who is oblivious to the danger.
All the feeling that has been suppressed through sheer trauma is like a volcano lying dormant and I have never stepped so slowly or carefully.
To hear it described through the expressionless face feels overwhelming. Like being locked in a room of horror and not being able to scream.
I cried at different points over the weekend. Trying to rid myself of things that no girl should ever witness or be part of.
And yet this beautiful young woman has love. Seen through the eyes of her children. When I thought I would feel nothing she cried for her child. Such a beautiful but minuscule moment of release in being able to feel connected to something in a way she has always wished for. Giving everything she needed but never felt.
There are moments of life I treasure. That was one. She looked at me with little girl eyes and I looked back with eyes of a mother.

I struggled to find the more required for P over the weekend. And this morning as he lay hungover and cursing himself for drunkenly having a go at a friend I realised that it may always be like this. That perhaps there will be no other side. That I have chosen to be there for someone who may always feel despair.
And I felt so sad in the thought of maybe never sharing again what was once so very beautiful.
Destined to walk a life with someone but feel nothing. That feels so difficult to accept but if I don’t I will torture myself for a lifetime with the hope of that.
I question often in what my motives are.
I feel responsible. I feel completely and utterly responsible for this person who I love and care about.

But I am feeling the pressure of it. Living one day at a time is working for me. It’s the only way that I am able to find my own happiness in amongst the sadness. I think I have huge resilience.
If my financial situation were different then I know it would look very different. I am a creature of circumstance. Those choices are limited in ways that other people wouldn’t necessarily understand. I’m not stupid. I have thought through the options many times but I always come back to the same place. It is the only choice when I think beyond just me. I need to think beyond just me. I can’t live a happy life without doing that. They are so intrinsically linked.
I had a moment where I didn’t. I risked everything in ways they can never imagine for a pure love that I felt. A risk that will impact the rest of my life and yet I hold onto that moment as though it were a dream.
But I have made the changes that I can. Doing the things that I want to do within my means and feeling no guilt in taking the time I require to look after myself.
Im sure I would feel better in taking care of P from afar. Sometimes it feels so difficult. But I have a love for him. We have a history together. We have a shared love in our girl who I can see is affected by what this is. I protect her as best I can from the sadness that sits in our home but I can’t stop her from feeling it too. I wish wish wish I could.
I question myself in what difference I make all the time but I believe I make some difference.
I lift things up a little so that things can function on a level where all is not lost. Those words given to me made me feel like I make a difference.
But I am paying a price in it. In moments that I allow myself to feel the disappointment in what my life might be.
I listen to others who have found their way through their difficulties and are feeling the hope of all those possibilities.
Who move on to new adventures, more exciting places and people with complete control over what their future might look like.
Who have the potential to share a beautiful and easy love that makes life so much easier to walk in.
I feel the opposite. Constantly digging and laying a path and pulling others I love along with me. Not wanting them to be swallowed up by disappointment and sadness till life has no purpose.
Sometimes like a little kid I feel like I would like someone to look after me. To say don’t worry about a thing, I will take care of it all. That is the safe that I remember once but I don’t feel now.
What I do feel safe in is not feeling disposable. Not feeling worthless and replaceable.
Just being
I’m not secure enough in myself to live in that.
I feel protected from that in where I now sit.

And yet in moments I leave myself completely open just so I can feel something more. I love that more. It is a magical place in the fluffiest of clouds where I feel completely me. The smallest things make the biggest differences to me.
Low maintenance or just very easily pleased?
I think just a girl who appreciates every wonderful thing that is ever given to her.

I watched the last ever episode of Merlin with my girl last night. We never saw it when she was a girl. It felt so sad as Merlin and Arthur spent Arthur’s dying moments together.
The servant who had to hide his magic from the King so that he could protect him. Just a kids show that made my girl happy but holds huge meaning for me in so many different ways especially when thinking about duty and destiny.
Whatever happens through my life as I push on in the challenges i face I will always feel proud in myself in trying my hardest and doing things in the best way I can. In trying to live a life that extends beyond just me.
Maybe my life will always appear less than others and I am sure many times I will feel that, but it will always mean more. And finding meaning in life is what we all search for .. or is that just me?!

“She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes”

Shake it off

Over the weekend I have felt a lot of emotion. It can feel a very lonely job sometimes. Not being able to share things that can at times affect me very deeply on a most basic human level.
Yes there is supervision, yes I have my own therapy but actually I am just a human who really cares.
Ive alway been told I was too sensitive. In this world having sensitivity is exactly what is required. I happily give my all to every single person I ever see.
It’s what makes me so right for this job but it can also take its toll in moments.

And this weekend was one of those. A series of related events that left me wondering whether I really have the strength required for this job.
It happens every now and then.
I felt so angry and sad and had absolutely no where to put that as it’s impossible to share what that really looks like unless you do this job too. But as I avoid being around other counsellors beyond the work, I am left in no mans land, holding my emotions without being able to explain them.
What the strangest job.
I have boundaries with clients and other counsellors.
There is vulnerability in both and leaving it at the door protects me (and them)
I’ve learnt it’s a bit of a fucked up world by all accounts and when I’m not working I’d rather be around people who aren’t in that world.

But of course it also leaves me quite alone in moments.

It’s why I swim.
And I swam a lot this weekend. But I haven’t been able to shake of what was shared on Friday and how that has impacted on me when I have my own challenges in life.
I felt like I was scrabbling around to feel enough.

Today as I swam back down the pool I saw one of my angels coming towards me. I wasn’t sure at first because she had her goggles on but then I saw her cheeky little smile.
What a sight for sore eyes. We hugged in the middle of the pool.
I could have cried in the happiness of seeing someone I love so much and who loves me back just as I am.
Her timing in having a day off and showing up at the pool at the same time was nothing short of magic.
That hug was all I needed. I came home and felt more like myself again.
Thanks angel 😇