How Did I Get Here? Free/Adrift

Where am I?

In some respects that’s a very odd question to ask. How do I not know where I am? I’m here, surely.

Ok then – where’s ‘here’? How did I get here?

Ah. Better questions to ask, although somewhat harder to answer.

I’ve not posted much this year as I’m sure you’ll realise. The beginning of this year was supposed to be the start of an exciting adventure – a 12 month career break from my day-job, a move to Berlin, a fun chapter of something completely different in the middle of my life.

It’s not been like that.

With everything in place, two weeks before my move to Berlin things started to fall apart. And as always with life, they fell apart hard and fast and kept getting worse. First – the apartment I had sorted in Berlin became ‘unavailable’ when the guy I was expecting to move in with told me there were structural problems with his building and financial arguments with the landlords and I couldn’t move in. (This was on the day of my leaving party at work…)

Not to be deterred I pressed upon my ex boyfriend for a place to stay whilst I figured things out – he had lived with me for three weeks last year whilst he was between places so he owed me, and I intended to make myself a useful houseguest and help him out with as much as I could whilst I was there. We got along great – better than we had in a long time actually – which should have been my warning sign.

Then sadly my best friend in the world got sick. If you’re not an animal lover, or you don’t understand how close someone can be to their pet, skip this part or stop reading altogether. KD was a kitten when I got her for my 14th birthday and in the twenty years that followed she was always my girl. In the last two years when I brought her up to London to live with me she was somedays literally the only reason I got out of bed. Twenty years old is an impressive age for a cat and an impressive age for any friendship – but sadly old age and congestive heart failure got the best of us and a month ago I had to take her to the vets and have her put to sleep. It was her time; she and I both knew that. But it’s not like it appears in films and TV – it’s hard, it’s fast, it’s ugly and it’s brutal and those minutes have haunted me every days since. IMG_0193.jpg

It was on that day that my ex disappeared for five days. Too ‘busy’ to be with me as I grieved. When he finally showed up – a shag already invited round – his demeanour changed. Refusing to tell me what the problem was – refusing to actually speak to me – he spent the next three weeks completely avoiding me as if I was guilty of some terrible act against him so terrible he couldn’t bare to face me. I lived in his flat whilst he spent days elsewhere to avoid me (five days straight was the record). When he was home (for an hour or two here and there), he was locked in his bedroom refusing to speak about what was wrong. I still to this day do not understand what his problem is.

I ended up not going to the Prowler Porn Awards – the idea of slapping on a happy face to watch a select few pat themselves on the back was the last thing I felt like when the night finally arrived… and then my ex turned up with a shag – someone I had connected with last year – someone I’d given hundreds of pounds to when they were completely broke and suicidal just to help him get himself to work and carry on – and this guy just said ‘hey’ and they went off to his room to fuck.

I escaped to stay with some friends for a couple of days – and when I went back, my ex’s tactics had switched from avoidance to exclusion. I was trying to sleep on the couch whilst guys arrived at all hours of the night to creep past me and have sex parties in his room.

I’m a tough character. I know when to stand my ground and demand answers, demand an explanation, demand respect. I also know when I’m not going to get those things and when I’m in danger of caving under pressure and going to my dark place.

So where am I? 

I’m in Berlin.

I’m only here for a week – I’m booked in to the Ibis until Friday. I needed to get out of a cold and wet London which was altogether too toxic, too oppressive, and too painful to be able to think straight. When I landed in Berlin it was 30C and the sun was blazing. I don’t know what my plan is as such – I booked one way tickets purely so every option was open to me. Money will start becoming a deciding factor soon, as will the need to return and try and secure all my possessions from my ex’s place assuming he’ll have enough of a conversation with me to allow that.

How did I get here?

Your guess is as good as mine. I had a plan all worked out. I’m frankly still in shock at how quickly I’ve been left with no home, no job (until I return to my regular job next March), no sustainable plans for the future and no one to depend on me… I’ve never been so free/adrift in my life. I have no bills to pay, no rent to pay, no one to look after, no one asking where I am… I can do anything. That’s not a good thing for someone in my emotional condition. Some things are starting to come in to focus now I’m away from the immediate problems, but there’s still a lot to figure out.

Not at all the porn stuff you’ve come to expect from me or this blog, but lets face it at the end of the day that’s all just cock-waffle. I’m not writing this for sympathy (no practical use for sympathy). I’m not writing this to whine (done enough of that to anyone who’ll listen lately). But writing it helps me organise my thoughts, set myself some kind of baseline… a new ‘zero’ that I can look at and try to work above.

I want to be able to ask ‘where am I?’ and have a better fucking answer than the one I’ve just written here.

I’m looking out the window right now in to sunlight and smiling. That’s a start.


4 thoughts on “How Did I Get Here? Free/Adrift

  1. So sorry to hear you have had such a run of bad luck lately. And what the fuck is up with your ex? He’s being very passive aggressive and seems like he is just trying to get you to leave by being rude and mean to you but that is so childish if he felt you had stayed too long then just say that to your face like an adult. Hopefully you can find a place while there in Berlin and things will fall back into place. Network while your there surely someone can help you find a room or apartment to live in.

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  2. You don’t know me in person, but we’ve often exchanged profile views online and you even sent me a “woof” on Scruff once…I was very flattered but mainly flustered because I’m not a confident person. And then I came here, and this particular blog post drew my attention. I’m not sure I can articulate how I feel, all positive but all slightly chaotic and hard to describe.

    Yep, life is a bitch when it decides it wants to throw curve-balls at you and more than you think you can cope with. On the surface it seems like you are coping, if only day by day at the moment; that works and if that’s what gets you through to the next morning then it’s an important thing. When I was first diagnosed HIV+ in 2001, I got through the days knowing that I could climb into a bottle of vodka every night. And when they turned off my husband’s life support in 2005, I shut out the world for a long while. Each and every way of dealing with trauma in life is valid if it lets you cope.

    I’m dreading the day when I have to let my cat (Pepper) go, but she’s 16 now so I just make sure she’s happy and feels loved. I can sympathise with the deep pain and sorrow you feel, and can only hope that in the coming months your mind turns to happier memories of the daft things she did to make you giggle.

    I know you said that there’s no practical use for sympathy; practicality be damned. It’s the way we let people know that we truely care, that a total stranger can read your words, feel touched, and reach out to you to say that it matters, that you matter.

    There are few if any things I can do to help you with the Berlin situation. I’ve never been (I know, bad gay) although one of my close friends ran away from Australia and lived there for a year. I actually met him in real life last summer at Comptons while he and his boyfriend were doing a tour of Europe, and it touched me when he said that he wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for the support…not here in a gay bar, or here in London, but here in life. Sorry, I got side-tracked there and a bit choked up.

    In the interests of brevity, because I’m already waffling, if ever our paths cross and you want a hug, just reach in for it; I may have to insist on a few minutes of hug, but I think that’s a small price to pay. If you want additional hugs, it’ll have to be over popcorn and a small sherry 😉

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