Hello My Old Heart {Deep Thoughts on a Deep Year}

As the end of the, not only year, but decade is here, I have some thoughts on 2019.  While overall it was a pretty good year, as is usually the case, it involved high highs and low lows.  I completed my Drink, Pray, Love year in the UK with my daughter and the entire experience was truly amazing.  I highly recommend it if you have the opportunity to dig deep and spend time with people you love, doing what you love in the process.  And drinks help, too.

I embraced change, and growth, and I let go of a lot of stuff.  Don’t worry, there’s still a lot there that’s holding me back in relationships {great writing material,} but overall my growth was never more evident than when I invited Mr. Big back into my life.

Let’s start with the end of drink, pray, love as it was the highlight of the year.  I’ll write about the UK trip later, but know that it was great for so many reasons, and eye opening for others.  What was supposed to be a family trip ended up being just me and Ella. We planed, trained, bussed and walked our way through London, Edinburgh and Dundee, Scotland.

We got along very well, we saw all the sights we wanted to see, we ate weird things, like mutton pies {shhh don’t tell Ella she has no idea and thought it was the most amazing thing ever} and we visited family she had never met, and I hadn’t seen in decades.

Hello My Old Heart

On the flip side, for me the trip was excruciatingly lonely.  I enjoyed the time with my daughter, but we were together 24/7 for 14 days.  It was a lot and it made me miss having someone there to talk to about adult things.

Someone to help with the decision making and to help us when we were walking in the wrong direction, or getting on the wrong train, or walking in circles looking for the wrong train.  While most men wouldn’t be helpful in the directions department, at the very least it would’ve been nice to have someone to laugh about it with because my daughter was NOT laughing.

The trip made me realize how much I miss being in a relationship.

Also, on a side note, Ella and I travelled for two weeks with just a small suitcase each, a carry-on bag and two backpacks.  If you’ve ever traveled with me and seen how I pack {hello shoes} then you will know that this is my greatest accomplishment of the year.

When we got back home, Ella went to spend the rest of the summer with her Dad and I sunk into probably the worst depression I’ve been in this decade.  While I’ve never been suicidal, I can honestly tell you, if I had been taken out by a bus during this month of hell, I probably wouldn’t have been too upset about it.

I put myself back in therapy, I listened to self-help podcasts, I kept up with my routine and I started to feel better.  And just as I started to feel better, Mr. Big very unexpectedly came back into my life. I call it Divine Intervention as it’s the second time he’s played a profound role in helping me heal something that was profoundly wounded.  Granted, the first go around he helped heal one wound and caused another…

I decided I was going to take whatever time I needed to figure him out on my own.  Only a very select few knew of his existence in my life. While he wasn’t looking for a relationship – he had recently gotten out of one {not my story to tell} – he did want to apologize for what happened.  We were then, and still are, two people on completely different pages.  Probably two people in completely different books – but the books like to sit next to each other on the shelf.

I had realized long ago that while he’s not opposed to commitment as much as he claims to be, he doesn’t want it with me.  I also knew his heart was healing, so we kept things friendly.  As someone close to me said, “You better be nice to him. It sounds like he had a {insert adjective I can’t use because it’s not my story to tell} year.”  The irony is not lost on me that I became the caring and supportive friend who helped him recover from his broken heart.  But in his own way, he was the caring and supportive friend who helped me recover from my darkness, too.

We decided we valued our friendship, but we have different ways of showing people in our lives how we value them.  Over time, our communication became less and less.  We were able to get a lot off of our chests, but there are still things I know I’ve left unsaid.

As the year ends, I’m reflecting on the fact that I’m more patient and understanding than most, and while I was starting to view those as negative traits, those traits are who I am at my core and I need to accept them.  With boundaries.  And so it was that a completely unexpected, mutually beneficial friendship became one of the highlights of my year.

As I look ahead, I need the courage to say the things I want to say, to ask for the things I need, and to get a greater understanding that our thoughts create our emotions.  Because things left unsaid cause thoughts that create emotions that can tumble around in your head like clothes in a dryer.

On another note – while I’m still not ready to get back on Bumble, Sharon Stone is.  If Basic Instinct can’t get a date using methods that don’t involve swiping, then we’re all fucked.

Happy New Year!

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