JOURNAL ENTRY: Thursday 13 June 2019

Another 24 hours in recovery and it’s no wonder that my head hurts. I’ve been back on the book writing today. It was a slow start, for two reasons. Firstly, I’ve been doing more of this (blogging) recently. I’ve got into the habit of writing short, to the point articles that are about 1,000 words long, which is a completely different writing style to that of a book. Secondly, I wasn’t really sure where I was going to take it next, but once I started to put a few thoughts down, the flow came back and I’ve been pretty productive.

I felt like I’ve been a bit self-critical and low on confidence these last couple of days. That feeling was very present this morning, but as I’ve got more and more done throughout the day, those feelings have dissipated.

I think I have a slight infection on one of my back teeth too, which is making me feel slightly under the weather and is affecting my mood. It doesn’t feel too bad. I brought some mouth wash today and I’ve given it a good clean this evening, so hopefully it will be gone by the morning.

Today’s writing has been very intense but rewarding. Most of what I write, I’m already aware of, but somehow it’s different when it’s actually manifested on the screen. What’s really apparent is just how pivotal Nadia has been throughout my entire adult life. We were only together for 3 years back when I was 17-20, but it’s only very recently that I’ve been able to find closure and let go of the fantasy of us getting back together.

Nards, if you’re reading this, which is highly unlikely, I’ve always loved you. I still love you and I probably always will love you. That said, that doesn’t mean I want us to be together, I’m just stating what I should have said to you years ago. When I said forever, I meant, forever…

Today I’ve been single for almost 5 years, as it was the breakup of my last relationship that triggered my breakdown and forced me into recovery. There was a point when the thought of being without a girlfriend was really frightening for me. I was so unsure of myself and so co-dependent that I needed another presence in my LiFE, to distract me from my own insecurities and anxieties.

I’m really shocked that I’ve been in 3 long term relationships since Nadia, and I haven’t actually wanted to be in any of them. This is the first time that I’m really admitting to myself that I’ve been living this huge lie for ages. It’s not just hurt me but it’s hurt the three lovely women that I’ve been involved with too.

Someone once told me that for every three years you spend in a relationship, you need one year on your own in order to get over that relationship when it ends. At the time, this advice went in one ear and out the other, because there was no way you were going to get me on my own at any point. I was a serial monogamist with overlap, going from one relationship to the next. I’ve probably been in 16-17 years worth of relationships over the last 23 years, so it does feel about right to have spent the last 5 years on my own. I’m getting to the point where a relationship feels appealing again, but judging by what I wrote today and still have left to write, there is still yet more processing of the past to be done before that happens.

Recovery does feel relentless and without end. The minute you work something out and it becomes clear, that clarity spurs you on to new depths of insight and I find that I just end up pealing another layer off the proverbial onion and starting over again. I’d like to reach a point where I find closure. Maybe that’s what writing this book is all about for me? Maybe once my story, or at least the bulk of my story, is down on paper, I won’t need to carry it around with me anymore.

I must admit, compared to 3-4 years ago, my ability to process the past is vastly superior. I remember spending weeks in bed at a time because something had triggered me and I either couldn’t figure out what was wrong or couldn’t face it, so I hid. I still get the occasional day or two where I feel like I’ve done too much and need stop and have some absolute downtime, but that’s very rare these days. Most of the time I’m able to process this stuff on the fly, take a breath and then move on. It really is like the saying goes, “it never gets any easier, you just get stronger”.

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