Over my time with DrS I was tumbling into a pit of despair.
I think that short relationship was an attempt to hold on to something “normal” while I broke myself down through counselling and embarked on a medication change. I was to switch to a new SSRI which worked to improve cognitive processing. But first I needed to come off of my hefty dose of SNRI anti depressant which I had been on for almost 4 years. This would prove to be physically as well as emotionally painful, but also an invaluable awakening. I had been put on these ones after the birth of my youngest and had provided me an emotional bubble against the escalating abuse at home, and to reduce my fear. It had worked so well for so long, but essentially I had been wrapped in cotton wool.
As the layers were slowly removed, under the care of my doctor, specialist nurse and counsellor, I started to notice new things.
All of a sudden I was aware of feelings, emotions I had worked so hard to hide. The first time these came up was at a CMnf night. It had been organised by a local couple in response to no CMnf nights happening within a couple of hours drive. It was more of a soiree, just three couples. And the host was in a corset, so the other lady added some knickers. “You can put on some clothes N” I was told, but I was so disappointed. I had gone for the experience of being naked in clothed company, and had been let down by the other women. Not how I had envisioned the evening, but I was determined to make the most of it. After dinner DrS was offered to try the Canadian Prison strap. It was owned by MsD who had used it on me on a previous trip to ESKN so I knew what to expect. Heavy, thuddy, with a little bit of a bite…
Errr, not quite…
After one mis-hit across my red zone I was quite upset. He didn’t see that he had got me on the wrong area and was offered tuition. I accepted that accidents happen, but when the second swipe fell wrong I disintegrated into floods of tears. It hurt! And not in a good way. We left not long after that, and that was the last time that he and I shared any impact play.
A couple of weeks later I went to the British Fireworks Championships with M.
I sat on the grass bank and watched the explosions searing their presence on the darkness of the night sky above and reflecting in the glossy ink ripples of the sound below.
It was half way through the second display that my visual synapses flicked back on… Lighting my world in glorious technicolour! Once more I broke down, sobbing uncontrollably, shaking silently as the tears flooded my cheeks. It was the most beautiful thing I had ever experienced, and found comfort in the embrace of my wonderful friend. Shaken, I called my doctor the next day who explained that it was a normal effect of the reduction in medication, sensory switches turning on once more, at random intervals. It would feel overwhelming, he said, but it is an important phase.
That knowledge was a comfort, but it didn’t stop the deep fatigue.
When I was with DrS every yawn (and I mean EVERY yawn) was greeted with a Kenneth Williams worthy “Oooh Dear” and it was utterly exhausting trying not to be polite and not snap at him for fear of looking irrational. I thought this was me being irrational and tetchy due to the chemical shift I was experiencing.
A couple of weeks later we attended an erotic massage workshop, and while learning the basics I realised that touching him made me feel uncomfortable, and I really didn’t want him touching me. When he was texting that evening I picked up on something he said. I planned to go for a walk on the beach the following day, alone. I would likely go for a swim and was surprised when he said he would join me and bring a towel. “You’re going to have a swim?” I asked.
“No” he laughed, “But I will maybe have a paddle” It may seem insignificant, but it was truly the straw that broke the camel’s back. I wasn’t even sure I would take a towel for my swim, or even a costume… This man was not right for me, clearly, but this was my boundary!
“What am I doing with him B?” sat on the step at the turn of the staircase running my fingers through my hair puzzling down the phone at my best friend “I need this to stop. This isn’t the medication, this is incompatibility. No future with him, this isn’t fair on him or me”
I decided that I would pop round to see him straight away, end things, go home and have some dinner.
“OK, let me know you are home safely” were Bs parting words and off I went.
I imagine we have all been dumped by someone who we cared for more than was reciprocated. But I was not expecting his reaction, considering we had only been together for about 3 months and it had been less than ideal. But he kept going… “It’s taken me 49 years to find you how long will it take until I find someone else” and “Don’t do this, I’ve never been more compatible with anyone in my life” are the two sentences that were burnt into my memory that night, but there was more. It was painful to watch this man so hurt, but I couldn’t fix that without putting my own needs last…again. None of my niggles were iron-out-able, and there were a lot of little things that irritated me about him. They were part of him, and he shouldn’t have to change to fit in with what I need. There is compromise and then there is manipulation and character assassination. I reassured him that he would find someone who was better suited to him, a woman who wasn’t allergic to his cat and who enjoyed the carry on movies, and then I left. When I got home I sat back on my step at the turn of my staircase, dialled B and breathed a sigh of relief. I had been decisive and did what was needed, but also tried to be mindful of his feelings.
A new me emerging perhaps? Or the old me sparking back to life?