LIFE UPDATE: BREAKUPS AND CHANGESFriday, August 19, 2016
I wanted to make a comeback to this blog that was somewhat organised, complete with pictures of my adventures and exciting stuff I've been up to. Don't get me wrong- I have had the best summer of my life. I've been productive and lazy, busy and quiet, extroverted and introverted as hell. This update I really wanted to be jam-packed with all of these exciting things but I can't. It wouldn't feel right. I am currently sat in bed, having let curiosity get the better of me severely, and left myself feeling rather down. All in all, I am happy. It just wouldn't feel right, however, if I didn't update you on some of the changes in my life (and I will get to the good stuff soon, I promise).
Firstly, my relationship ended. Part of me is so reluctant to go into details but then the other half wants me to let it out, through fear of repeating mistakes. I suppose, somewhere in this mess, I have to find a middle ground. My ex-boyfriend and I got together at the end of Year 13 (which is basically the time where you are off to University but you are yet to sit your exams-I like to label it as 'purgatory'). Before him, I had been seeing someone from my workplace who absolutely adored me. He was lovely to me but, inevitably, we were at different stages in our lives. This guy was my first proper experience with a long-term boyfriend and we just ended up going our separate ways. Now, and this is not to be recommended by any means (nor is it to be discouraged as whatever happens, happens), I met my ex-boyfriend just a few days later. It was so very different to me as, having lacked strong emotions for another person for a while, I suddenly felt excited that this rather cool, good-looking and funny guy was very interested in me. He was popular with women so, obviously, I was flattered. We got together so innocently, which is so odd for an 18 and 19 year old. I'd definitely say summer played a massive part. Him and I were caught up in the celebrations from finishing our exams, the excitement for university, the holidays and separate adventures we were going on which gave us enough space to miss the other...it's safe to say that it was all very intense. Things progressed very quickly, prodded on by the fear of, at the end of the summer, being torn apart dramatically to go our separate ways. Anyway, skip forward to the end of summer and it was decided that we would stay together. Why would you throw away something so great for the sake of it?
I didn't really argue with the person before him. I kind of put the lack of excitement down to that, in a warped and twisted logic I developed in my head. I was so in love with this new guy that I thought our arguing was so normal. I thought that it was a result of feeling so intensely for someone else. Neither of us had ever felt anything like it before, we proclaimed to each other. I thought University would be absolutely fine for us. I had found someone who cared about me deeply and, although we argued and were polar opposites, we had each other. So I went to University in a relationship. Everyone I met there seemed to be in one too. Looking back on it now, there was so much that was wrong. He dumped me one day in, for starters. A lot was said and he'd had enough and there I was, my first night out and I was crying ugly, snotty tears and going home early. My freshers experience was horrible and that is not to blame him for it at all! I was confused as to where I was and, as it takes me a while to adjust to any new place, I had no appetite for anything. It was busy and full of meeting new people. Generally, I was just exhausted and wanted to hear from him. A few days later, he contacted me and everything was resolved, provoking us to proceed with our relationship.
The first term, for me, was so difficult. I really struggled to find motivation to push myself. I wasn't getting involved, I'd spend most nights in working and face timing my boyfriend and I just wasn't having whole-hearted fun. This is where I made my mistakes. I never pushed myself. Coming home at Christmas, with a relationship hanging by a thread, was worsened by the knowledge that, while University life isn't what it seems, home life was no better. There were struggles at home and I was relying on the month-long break to improve our situation. I kept saying that I wanted my best friend back but this is where I got mixed up-I was relying on him more than anything. Remembering it now, I made so mistakes simply from being reliant. He was pretty much my happiness and it was made clear that no one would love me more than he did. He bought me a notebook, in which I wrote to myself to man up and make the next term better.
Boy, did I stick to my word. I went back with him as my boyfriend again and pushed myself so hard. I forced myself to make stronger connections, throw myself at any situation and experience thrust my way and I auditioned for a shit load of shows. There was one week, very early on in January, where I went back and forth to London (you may have remembered me blogging about it). I consider that week to be the start and the end of a lot of things in my life. Whilst I was given the opportunity to do so many amazing things that week, like interview Ian McKellen and audition and celebrate my flatmates birthday and watch west-end shows, there was something that was bringing it down. It was me, mainly. I felt so stuck in wanting to make it work that I became ratty, bordering on nasty. I was so irritable and fed up. It was becoming startlingly aware to me that we were such different people. His jokes I found to be cruel, his habits were irritating to me, he didn't find me funny or believed my actions to be sincere. I just felt torn. At the end of that week, I headed back to Birmingham and everything just started up for me.
I got a role in a show with some amazing people, I was reporting and interviewing, I was doing well academically, I became better friends with so many people who picked me up when I was down. In between all of this, I was actually going out. When I say that I was so busy, yet so happy, it doesn't do it true justice. Generally, I just felt so much more at home with everyone and everything. In the midst of all this, I messed up as an empathetic individual. Whilst I was having fun and being productive, I completely neglected my relationship. It was so incredibly selfish of me. This is why it is so true that it takes two to tango as I should've ended it. I don't know why I didn't. I was becoming so proud of myself and happy that I didn't need him anymore. He didn't need me either. Each time we spoke, we argued. So, in my twisted logic, I just stopped talking. I thought, if we have minimal contact then we won't have time to fight. For some reason, despite me gaining so much strength and self-love, I couldn't bring myself to get out of that situation. All my friends were telling me to leave. And it wasn't just for my sake, but his. Instead, I just adopted a 'I don't care' attitude and blocked the whole thing out.
He ended things in the end and I was completely heartbroken. It's so twisted how your emotions can work like that, isn't it? For ages, you can feel as if you have the upper hand on the situation and finally be getting a good grasp of it, when actually you have no clue what you're doing. We had come home for Easter and I knew in my heart that it had to stop. I was miserable going home and I wasn't looking forward to seeing him as I knew what was inevitably going to happen. We did try a bit at Easter but he went away and never came back. I didn't hear from him much whilst he was gone and, when his mum asked when he was coming back, I honestly couldn't tell her. I didn't have a clue. Everyone at home was also telling me to end it. I'd gone from someone so happy at University to someone so miserable. He did the right thing in ending it. I don't agree with how he did it but then again, there is never a nice way, is there? What did confuse me was why I felt so ill. I guess it was the sudden realisation that I had actually wasted so much time. Please don't misunderstand that he is also an individual and has a lot to offer. I can't completely override good memories with all the poor ones in order to make me feel better as he was initially so supportive. We were just so bloody different. He wasn't proud of me anymore and, if anything, I irritated him. To know you are irritating someone who is supposed to be the one person you can rely on is damaging to one's confidence. He just wasn't bothered about me anymore, which is what he made clear when he ended it. It's so hard hearing that someone has given up in a few seconds when you've both been working on it for months. He was right to do that though.
Journeying back to Birmingham, I cried. I was relieved. I just wanted to be at the place I felt most at home. Third term was definitely the nail in the coffin for me. First term: reclusive and nervous, second term: I gained a lot more confidence and became far more productive, third term: I didn't stop. I got a position on a committee which led me to organise events for the comedy society, I had weekly meetings, exams to revise for, shows to do following some more successful auditions, balls to attend and, to top it all off, I didn't spend any nights in. I was dating, crying, laughing...the works. My friends were there for me whenever I needed them. When I was sad and had no appetite, a dinner would be plonked at my door with a note telling me to man up. I gained so much love and support in the place of emptiness. From late March/April to early June, I was by myself and I was so happy to be single.
This is where the changes come in because, on a night where I went on a first date since the breakup, I met Reece. One of my best friends at the University is actually from my hometown, although I'd never met him until I was in Birmingham. Anyway, the date was lovely but not what I was looking for and I went out afterwards. Ironically, this club night was the same club night I had attended when I came back from the week in London in January, on the night I was cast in the show and things started changing. I was walking through the club and I recognised someone I used to fancy when I was 16. He was there visiting my best friend at University as they are also best friends and was equally happy to see me. That weekend I spent with him, on and off, and I felt something I'd missed for a really long time. Shortly after he left Birmingham, he came back in order to see if we were anything and it was mutually decided that we were two peas in a pod.
That was over two months ago and I can safely say that I was definitely ready to fully move on. I was so reluctant to jump from boy to boy, following the small gap between the previous relationships. On top of that, what if this turned sour too? what happens if we start arguing and become poisonous for each other? The truth is, you never, ever know when you're going to meet someone. You can never predict change. I didn't expect myself and my ex-boyfriend to turn out the way we did. However, meeting Reece felt so natural and normal. He betters me as a person, without us relying on each other. I trust him completely. Whenever there has been a problem at home or with my health, he is the first to offer support, even when I don't ask for it. Meeting him led me to cut out false friendships and feel better about myself. I am an individual who gets to be with another individual who just so happens to be their best friend. Words cannot express how happy I am about it all. He knows far more about me than I've ever revealed to anyone-mostly stuff like this. Stuff I'd be embarrassed about usually, he fully supports and even enjoys. My parents love him, which is unusual as I never usually bring boyfriends home. I don't know what the future holds but I know that he respects me and I respect him. That's enough to be confident that I can do whatever I need to, without fear of souring something. Best of all, I can't imagine arguing with him. He's too close to me to argue with. This all goes to show that changes, as scary and unwanted as they may be, lead you to different things. Things and people more suited to you.
Having come full circle with this rather long post, I will address why I was initially put-out. I'd been reminded of my previous relationship as he had put something on social media that wasn't particularly nice. What I do know from this is not that he is a bad person, but that I am not the person I was when I was with him. Me and him have completely changed. I am happier in many other ways, not disrespecting our time together at all. From this I truly feel I can offer another person or group of people far more effort and time and love and compassion. Everything in life happens for a reason and, me stumbling across this potentially evening-ruining set of tweets has actually led me to reflect on something I haven't in a while and draw positives from it. I know i've changed from how I reacted. If you are stuck, please know that you are literally not the first or the last to feel the way you do. It took me too long to get out of something toxic, regardless of whether or not I met Reece. I didn't need anyone else but I wanted him and that, is a far healthier attitude to have. I'm incredibly lucky that things turned out the way they did- consider this post a form of therapy for me. Hopefully this all made some form of sense but I thought I would fully update you guys in order to move forward.
Sending so much luck and love to anyone who feels lost at this time.