Well, it has been quite some time since I have written on here, and as part of trying to build my online presence and keep my writing muscles strong I have decided – why not blog again?
Life has been chaos since last May, in many ways. I left my home from home Portsmouth, and lived for three maddening months at my mothers. Despite our best efforts – our personalities clash whenever forced to spend any significant amount of time together, so along with her drinking demons rearing their ugly heads, it was time to pack my suitcase come October and seek a new place of refuge in the maelstrom of job searching .
That is how I ended up here, in Bedford. For one reason or another, this strange town with it’s mixes of cultures, classes and problems, is the place I end up when in a serious time of need. This time, it was my godmother who offered me food and a roof whilst I unrelentingly applied for all manner of writing work online, to rarely much avail. However, with a second lock down clamped around us through the dark winter months, we all knew it was time for me to find my own space again by the Christmas season. That sense of middle class homelessness and disillusionment were a heavy weight around me always- wondering how after three full, thriving and successful years in Portsmouth, I had somehow ended up alone, jobless and depending on the kindness of friends to provide me with a home in such a bleak time. There came one small sliver of hope in the form of a part time job in a local Bedford school, so I took it. This spurred me on to find a cheap double room in a local house, a mere minutes walk from where I would be working with six other housemates. As much as the house had rough edges and unclean bathrooms, I was encouraged to sign my name to it – so I did.
I unpacked my things, repacked my suitcase to spend Christmas in London with my brother (a far safer alternative to my mother at that time) which was the one moment of genuine happiness in the festive season. London was a strange ghost town, grey skies and chilly winds blew as my brother and I huddled down in our plush air bnb, drinking Prosecco and watching The Grinch in all it’s glorious warm hearted glee. New Years Eve was spent in a house full of strangers, fearing the potential of working in a school with covid cases skyrocketing, but once I began supervising the children of key workers, life began to find a little of it’s rhythm again. I began to take better care of myself, taking long walks to work and back and doing yoga classes online in my bedroom.
There also began to emerge more than a little magic and chemistry with my housemate downstairs, a handsome and smooth American from Tennessee. With flesh holes in his ears, tattoos and an accent I had never heard outside of movies and highly controversial political views, he was a delightful shock to my system, and I instantly began to like him. This grew over time, polite chats in the corridor turning to walks in the park, then to teas in the afternoon, then to dinners in the evening, then to sleepovers on the weekend. We gently and slowly fell into a romance during a lockdown, neither of us having looked for it, both delighted to have found such a happy surprise in such a dreary world. Yet, as with all things, it hasn’t lasted. Six months in, and one strange event broke the bliss of a happy relationship, which led to an argument one Monday evening. The argument led to a lone walk to the park to meet him the next evening, which led to an abrupt and heart breaking end to the affair, at least for me.
As always with affairs of the heart, it hit me deeply in the chest, with a lot of tears, a lot of chats with friends and a lot of hard nights, waiting for sleep to come only for the plummeting feeling to return to my stomach the moment I awoke the next day. Whilst we are indeed very different, highly contrasting people, the majority of it – I thought – only made us more attractive to the other. I’ve tried to find a way to prove myself to him, to disprove the negative accusations he made before, but it does not seem to be possible. When love is lost – or taken from us by the other ending the relationship, I truly believe we mourn all the possibility we thought laid ahead of us. Holidays away, birthdays, Christmases, even just the quiet evenings curled up together on the sofa, feeling the warmth and touch of another in such a decidedly dangerous and distant world.
For better or for worse, we remain in the same house, and now is only the beginning of the next part of our journey here; no longer being together, yet not hating one another, nor (in my mind) there existing a true reason for us not to continue being happy in each other’s arms and company. I know what is meant for us (hopefully) comes to us eventually, but I am only at the beginning of letting that expectation go that this was what happened with him. Regardless, it has been a relationship that brought me joy, brought me warmth and human connection after feeling so isolated and alone, and getting to know someone from such a different world than my own, that I cannot help but to have been enriched by knowing him and sharing all our turbulent past experiences, and cautious, tentative hopes for the future.