Archives for posts with tag: relationship

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Life can be cruel, it seems that only half of all relationships survive a cancer diagnosis, with a man being more likely to leave than a woman. The longer the relationship before diagnosis the higher the chances are you will survive.

Last time ‘we were only together because you had cancer’ this time ‘I’m not happy with our situation’ yes my heart has been broken again. It’s not quite the end of a 22yeR relationship this time but the thought of being lonely is not a nice one.

Mr h was very caring in the beginning which I loved and the strong bond he had with his daughter has definitely rubbed off on me and my daughter. He showed me that love is possible, and how to use Netflix! and I thank you for that. Looking back there were quite a few times that were not good but I won’t be wasting my time on anger it’s not what I do, I take the best parts with me (including the PlayStation) and learn from the broken bits and hit the road again… if it’s not meant to be, as they say life’s too short.

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do” – Eleanor Roosevelt

Can I blame him for this cancer kiss off? Of course, I’m disappointed we didn’t work out and there are parts I miss, but in the end this wasn’t what he signed up for. I understand It could also just of been simply we didn’t get along? His profile accurately stated he was a ‘hopeless romantic’ I like to describe myself more a ‘hopeful romantic’

The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at a time of challenge and controversy.” – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

So now I continue watching life through my fingers awaiting the next instalment of my life whilst falling asleep mid film on the sofa. Christmas is looming, Strictly is now the TV of choice and I’m going to spend that money saved on an extra Christmas present on  a rather gorgeous molten brown advent calendar I’ve been coveting. That dating site is looking very tempting, maybe just a little look…😀

Goodbye

Angela

xx

 

 

 

 

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After a busy day I walk into his office leave my shoes in the corridor and throw my coat over the first chair I come to and then wander over to his desk to sit in the comfy office chair and lean back, then I’m keen to find out what’s been happening today? As soon as he sees me he smiles its good to see each other after a long day at work. I notice lots of paperwork over his desk, you really should tidy these up I say, putting them alphabetically in a new in-tray perhaps? I don’t get any response which is strange I would expect this idea to be helpful? Realising it’s nearly 6pm I’m keen to eat something, I’m starving, I have no idea what we are doing for dinner? With any luck he has been to the new trendy bakery on the south bank in his break to get one of my favourite cupcakes.

I can see out of the corner of my eye the flat screen TV on the wall of the office which has the news on it. As I walk closer I can see on the way inside the small office kitchen, all the dirty washing up is all piled up on the side. What have they been doing all day? I proceed to the cupboard to find a wine glass and then pour from the cheeky bottle of pink bubbles in my bag… It’s been a long day.

I walk back across the office And I can see he has laid out some dinner on the meeting room table for us to enjoy, he is standing there with a grin of anticipation he knows he has done well. As I walk into the room he pulls out a chair for me to sit down. You look like you’ve had a busy day sit down and relax he says…

So how was your day he asks attentively? I mainly worked on the junior training programme and started implementing my new reward scheme with my boss, i need to raise key questions about the future communications within my team I tell him. We touched base with all the latest playground developments and the research trip to the science museum is now confirmed in the diary. I ask what have you been up to today?

Before I hear his reply there is a noise in the background? ‘Morning its 7.30 on Tuesday‘ the DJ cheerfully announces thanks to my bedroom radio. That heavy feeling on my chest is not work related stress, in fact it’s my cat sitting on my duvet purring away flicking her tail across my face whilst I sleep in a not subtle effort to wake me up and get fed.

Nearly 10 years ago now the relationship with my career in design was overtaken by a new relationship: motherhood. No longer am I that girl running to catch the 8.32 to Fenchurch street that gave me an extra ten minutes in bed and got me to work with minutes to spare. Now we are shortly going to be running with school bags and a scooter to the school gates before the door shuts at 8.55am, somethings don’t change, mornings have never really been my strong point. So every weekday morning the chaos begins, remember the homework, the swimming bag, where are my school shoes? Where’s the form for parent’s evening? I have to bring in a microphone and rap outfit for today mummy? I just need to check is my snow still in the freezer??

If being a mother were a job there’d be a selection process, pay, holidays, a superior to report to, performance assessments, Friday drinks, and you could resign from your job and get another one because you didn’t like the people you were working with. It’s not a vocation either – being a mother is a relationship” Catherine Deveny, The Guardian

Those skills from work are not just needed for business but for life. Particularly parenthood, with new targets, moving boundaries, increasing challenges and short deadlines. Multi-task, listen, negotiate, compromise, patience, leadership and management are just to name a few. I need to think outside the box, play in the box, cut up the box and jump over the box.

“In parenting roles you get a chance to do a lot of the same things you do as a manager,” Ruderman says. “You get to hone your interpersonal skills. You learn how to develop other people. It’s another opportunity to learn from experience.” Marian N. Ruderman, research director at the Center for Creative Leadership www.forbes.com

Its ironic that now I am not working in London anymore and looking after my daughter that I now have the patience of a saint and fantastic negotiation skills, I have to listen daily to the requests for a mobile phone! now it is time to pass on those patience and compromise skills to my daughter because she isn’t getting one yet…

Angela xx

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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It was almost a year ago that I embarked on a huge rebalancing of my life and finally gave up the fight and accepted part of the reason I was unhappy was being in a marriage without love that wasn’t working and it was time we called it quits. i took myself by surprise at the decisiveness that I took this step and how right it felt to start out again just me and my daughter. As the months went on I decided I wanted to go out and find someone to enjoy what I’d been missing for so long.

So it began, time to make adult conversation and release my inner wit and practise flirting again… Someone to go out to dinner with or see a film, try new things, finally a social life of my own. Don’t get me wrong I enjoy the mum social scene that comes with children but it has its limitations! Fundamentally dating hasn’t really changed from too many years ago when I last took part but now with a few added bits.. An online profile or life cv, mobile numbers, what’s app, smiley faces etc?? After messages with a few people and having a good giggle I realised there is no substitute for meeting in person and finding if the all important attraction is there? So off I went on an actual date!… Or now a coffee date first to see if you want to go on a real date, its surprising though how many people don’t actually drink coffee when you meet.

“Each dating experience provides you with in-the-moment information about your preferences, weaknesses and strengths. If you continue to think and do the same things that you have always thought and experienced, you will remain stuck. Your brain has an extraordinary ability to adapt and grow—if you allow it. For the brain to grow you have to give it new stimulation and new experiences that challenge you on some level. Perhaps there are things that you like or have wanted to try but have been afraid to do so. As long as they reflect your genuine interest, work through the anxiety and put yourself in novel situations where you may meet different kinds of people and experience other aspects of your personality.”

Jill P. Weber, Ph.D.  a clinical psychologist

When I went on one particular date in May this year I wasn’t expecting anything other than more practise. Oh how wrong I was something in his look, I knew within the first hour this time was very different, I wanted to stay here I liked it, a lot and I confess fancied the pants off my new date! I wanted to know more and I wasn’t leaving without a cheeky kiss, and I got it! Albeit a very polite and gentlemanly one, we were keen to hold hands together and smiling a lot, this showed real promise and excitement.

We weren’t wrong, six months on and a lovely surprise bunch of pink roses this week we’re well on our way, it seems we both felt the same on that day. We know so much more about each other now and our feelings have grown into love and care for each other. He has brought me back into a life I want to enjoy every minute of. Trying to remember good places to go, choosing a film for the cinema, thinking of holidays you would like to go on. Discovering each others differences, what flavour crisps you like, what TV you like to watch, what alcohol you drink. With time has come the ability to enjoy being relaxed in each others company, cooking dinner, falling asleep on the sofa, not wearing make up or your best clothes.  Combining two lives, both our families and our ex families too, its no easy task and takes time to create something new and different.

Something’s don’t change though… “It’s your turn, no I did it last night, but I cooked dinner, but I’ve been working all day!” Yes the washing up a test of any relationship! Its funny now how those little niggles start to show, even down to what dishcloth you use, when your older you have your set ways, you bring these to your relationship in equal measure. I find this amusing, which ones you think ok I’ll try your way and others you take no notice of, grin and carry on as always. Christmas is our next milestone, the tree, the dinner, combining even more families into 2 days and getting the presents right, the hardest bit of all.

Miles from where we started the last six months has been exciting, dramatic and also a valuable lesson in how a relationship should be. We are not perfect, I am still working on not receiving comments negatively as I would of done in the past, when I had good reason to and trusting now that I don’t, in the beginning the ghosts of both our pasts still affected our reactions to a situation. Luckily this time round differences resolve themselves easily and quickly and just add to the process of getting to know each other. The main thing I have learn’t this year is to do what makes you happy and be with who makes you happy, don’t settle or do something just because you feel you are expected to, trust your instincts.

A counsellor told me a year ago all good relationships are built on compassion and compromise, you need someone who makes you feel special, which is where I am today! I am looking forward to what the next six months will bring.

Lots of love

Angela

xx

 

 

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Traffic Light Tree is a public sculpture in London, England, created by the French sculptor Pierre Vivant. The Sculpture imitates the natural landscape of the adjacent London Plane Trees, while the changing pattern of the lights reveals and reflects the never ending rhythm of the surrounding domestic, financial and commercial activities.

This year has been a roller coaster of emotions to say the least, for both myself and my daughter, its been a steep learning curving finding out how we feel, seeing how we should feel and deciding how we want to feel. We’ve cried, laughed and loved more than we have ever done, this has brought us closer but also created more tense times. Surrounding influences have made our relationship more complicated now but also stronger, we both get things wrong and learn as we go along.

There is a lot going on in our life these days, what affect will this have, I don’t know yet? Our life is not what we expected, but I have no doubt that these changing patterns are the right ones and we are going in a more positive direction. She is definitely developing a strength of character beyond her years but is still only ten and has many emotions she does not understand, not to mention the tidal wave of hormones that have conveniently decided to turn up around the same time. She now has a much sharper sense of wit, improved sarcasm, stronger attitude and greater awareness of life around her, she now expresses her love and emotions much more clearly if not always in my favour!! My girl is growing up and like probably all mums out there I was totally unprepared, these things seem to turn up when you take your eye off the ball for a moment.

The funny thing is as my daughter struggles with her emotions I’ve realised how little I have dealt with my own over the past few years, its too easy to get on with everyday life, and put your thoughts to the back of your mind. Some strong emotions have been in our house in the past, not all great ones. Throughout this process my character has also regained its confidence and clarity, I am very proud to say with the added title of embarrassing mother! Not to mention annoying one too, followed by much amusement on my part, especially when she gives me ‘the look’ I am happy knowing I am doing my job properly…

This all being said… to my daughter you still have to make your bed in the morning, go to bed on time, pick up your dirty clothes off the floor etc, you won’t like it but one day you will thank me! (forgive the turning into my mother quote).

In the last year old relationships have finished, new ones have started and existing one have strengthened, not a straightforward process to navigate, it feels like my life has had a good spring clean this year but this has been followed by a huge weight lifted from my shoulders. I love those close to me with all my heart and am happy to show it as I know I am loved in return and confident that those few tense times are because we all care and they are a learning process about each other. You have shown me this develops a stronger relationship and deeper understanding of each other, just love me like you do…

Like the lights in the above installation our life’s are a constant changing pattern reflecting the never ending rhythm of our surrounding influences. I’m ready….

 

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ALWAYS CHOOSE LOVE. In the end, this is the only advice you need. If this is the guiding principle through which all your choices are governed, there is nothing that will threaten your happiness….” Gerald Rogers. I have spent too much time and energy in the last few years focusing on the negatives and how to try and fix them, I am now realising the best way to do this is to focus on the positive and the more positive things will step forward in your life. At the beginning of this year I let go of my marriage I cannot fix and I don’t feel bad about it, you can try to fix a bad situation but there comes a point you have to accept it is not possible.

Its amazing how when you split from a long relationship you realise how many people around you have done the same, people you saw in the street now have a story to tell, advice to pass on, its no longer an issue at school,  my daughter is one of many children whose parents have separated. Being able to talk to those who are further down the line than you offers invaluable advice to help you negotiate the tricky process of ‘co-parenting’. The process is not easy you split up for a reason so it doesn’t mean suddenly life will be a bed of roses apart, communication can prove complicated. However now it is limited to a ‘need to know’ basis making it simpler at least, still currently working out this area of my life but in time let’s see what happens.

Part of embracing the positives is not to dwell on the past, look forward after the end of a marriage life is now what you make it and nobody can stop you. You are responsible for your future, as scary as that is the opportunity is now out there to create the life you want, that independent, confident, happy, positive and caring girl is now finding her way back into the world. I now laugh a little harder, my smile is a lot brighter and I find myself smiling for no reason. Its another experience in life that you can learn from and gain strength that it will develop your character and make you a stronger person.

There is someone out there who will make you feel special and think you are amazing just the way you are! The heart is full of hope and that’s the way it should always be…

Here are a few quotes from a beautiful article by Gerald Rogers somethings we should never forget…

Never stop dating. NEVER EVER take that woman for granted. Be that man that would OWN HER HEART and fiercely protect it. This is the most important and sacred treasure you will ever be entrusted with. SHE CHOSE YOU. Never forget that, and NEVER GET LAZY in your love.

Protect your own heart. Just as you committed to being the protector of her heart, you must guard your own with the same vigilance. Love yourself fully, love the world openly, but there is a special place in your heart where no one must enter except for her. Keep that space always ready to receive her and invite her in, and refuse to let anyone or anything else enter there.

Focus only on what you love. What you focus on will expand. If you focus on what bugs you, all you will see is reasons to be bugged. If you focus on what you love, you can’t help but be consumed by love. Focus to the point where you can no longer see anything but love, and you know without a doubt that you are the luckiest man on earth to be have this woman

Don’t be an idiot…. And don’t be afraid of being one either. You will make mistakes and so will she. Try not to make too big of mistakes, and learn from the ones you do make. You’re not supposed to be perfect, just try to not be too stupid..

Be willing to take her sexually, to carry her away in the power of your masculine presence, to consume her and devour her with your strength, and to penetrate her to the deepest levels of her soul. Let her melt into her feminine softness as she knows she can trust you fully.

Be present. Give her not only your time, but your focus, your attention and your soul. Do whatever it takes to clear your head so that when you are with her you are fully WITH HER. Treat her as you would your most valuable client. She is.

Never stop growing together… The stagnant pond breeds malaria, the flowing stream is always fresh and cool. Atrophy is the natural process when you stop working a muscle, just as it is if you stop working on your relationship. Find common goals, dreams and visions to work towards.

Don’t worry about money. Money is a game, find ways to work together as a team to win it. It never helps when teammates fight. Figure out ways to leverage both persons strength to win.

Love from me xxx

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Does this really happen? Are there couples out there who have blissfully romantic and thoughtful relationships full of red roses after dealing with Cancer? I must of missed that paragraph in all those leaflets I read after appointments. Where is the leaflet about real life afterwards?

Do I look across the dinner table longingly at the husband who was very close to losing his life partner. Oh do I heck, he can be just as irritating now as he was 10 years ago when we were thinner, younger, childless with independent careers. The rubbish bin is overflowing that he refuses to empty until he has finished his beer, his shoes are abandoned in the middle of the hallway and the TV now has the News on it, whilst I dutifully cook the family dinner. Love is now a ‘pencil sharpener’ for christmas and I quote: “It had a 5 star rating on Amazon”… We have indeed become closer we are now so close we can wind each other up just knowing what irritating thing the other one is about to do with saying a word!

Do I look at life as a blessing and grab every moment with a renewed enthusiasm? No I do not I’m as down to earth and realistic as I was before Breast Cancer. Life can be irritating, frustrating and tiring, people can still be rude, ungrateful and inconsiderate. At home the Brownie promise needs to be learn’t, the spellings need practising, the bathroom needs cleaning, the fish tank needs changing and we have run out of bread. I struggle with a renewed enthusiasm for these jobs.

The one thing it has done is to make me really appreciate life exactly as it is. When your friend tells you she fell off a skateboard in Toys r us! When mid argument your husband cracks a highly inappropriate joke and its impossible to keep an angry face…There are lovely family moments together, we all laugh at the cat when she gets dizzy chasing her tail, we enjoy walks in the forest on a sunny day or summer days at the beach. We are in no way perfect we never were and never will be and I’m glad it has stayed this way.

I do now appreciate the ordinary, the average, the everyday, the fact that my marriage and family are ‘normal’ and remain the healthy mix of ups and downs it was before Cancer. Life doesn’t become a rose-tinted, stress free, and purely positive experience because you survived, life is life and I’m grateful for the funny, loving, empowering, irritating, rude, frustrating world it throws at me keeping all parts of me alive.

 

 

Help! I'm a stay-at-home mum

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Great highs, the depths of the lows and why at age 7 do I still have to remind my daughter to say please!

Great highs, the depths of the lows and why at age 7 do I still have to remind my daughter to say please!