The Cottage Smallholder

stumbling self sufficiency in a small space

First new steps

DSCN7404Danny has been back for a few days to sift through his stuff. It’s always good to see him. He brings me tea and perches on the end of my bed and we chat about our old points of contact on the Internet. The CSH forum, the blog and eBay. At the end of the day he returns to his new place in Ipswitch.

He’s getting fit. Walking, walking and walking. He’s even invested in a pair of hiking shoes – attractive trainers. He is looking good.

I remember that before I met him that this was his pattern.
“I want to get into shape.” He explained. “I love walking. And Galaxy chocolate.”
He’d left a failed relationship in America. Couldn’t get his green card so had traveled to England to start a new life.
I wonder if he’ll say the same to another lady, sometime down the line.

Back then I was delighted to be part of his new life – happily welcomed him with open arms. Now I wonder what really happened in America.

It’s important to remember that we had so many good times. Cuddling in front of the fire, indulging each other and just being a bit wild. Once in a fit of rage I throw D’s shoes onto the fire. They burst into flames in an instant. Perhaps this is a good recycling tip? The same evening Danny ripped his shirt open. It was a new one that I’d just given him.
“I’ve always wanted to do that”, he explained.
I found small white pearl buttons for months after when I was doing the cleaning.

We had fun times too. Like the occasion when we invited over a hundred people to a combined birthday party in our garden. A week before we lost our nerve and, concerned that loads of people wouldn’t come, we invested in ten ‘lifesized’ inflatable martians from the pound shop down in the town down south where D was working at the time. Perhaps the martians would bulk out the numbers a bit?

The night before the party D and I tested our lung capacity inflating these martians. As far as I can remember we managed to give buoyancy to the fist eight and shoved them into the kitchen. D pegged the final two of half inflated ones on the circular washing line. What on earth does a martian look like anyway?

The party was a success. Guests fought over who was going to leave with an arm round a martian.

Last week my sister pulled out a crumpled grey thing from under D’s desk in the Rat Room. When she unfurled it I recognised that it was the last surviving martian from that party. The plastic had deteriorated – there were holes in one shoulder and when we smoothed him out on the carpet the creases cracked open.

Today I spent the day alone. No visit from D – just the Min Pins for company.

I felt happy  to my core for the first time in years.


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  1. Ambersparkle

    Happy New Year, Fiona, hope it brings you everything you need. lots of love Tina x

  2. janerowena

    I’m so very sorry – my last marriage broke up over something similar. My ‘weight’ (I was only a size 14!) I think was used to disguise the fact that he just didn’t think I was what he had wanted after all. But I did find someone else who loves me as I am, and my Ex’s new wife has become a lot fatter than I ever was and I hope she doesn’t have to go through what I did. You will experience such highs and such lows, but the intervals between the lows will gradually stretch out and eventually disappear. I thought something was up, but didn’t guess at this. You may wish Danny to help out on the blog and forum at the moment but there will come a time when you will not want him around, so I would learn as much as you can from him while he is available.

  3. About a year before reaching that “on/off” switch in my mind, I remember sitting next to my ex on the couch. I told myself to remember that feeling of utter loneliness, while sitting next to the person who is supposed to be all you need. That proved to be excellent advice – I have never felt that lonely again, ever.

    It takes time to work through it and get to a better place. Yes, tears are part of those essentials to get to it – it is allowed and necessary.

    While in a verbal/mental abusive relationship, one starts believing the negative input you keep on hearing and (for me anyways) if told that you are fat, one just reaffirms it by eating more.

  4. Hi Fiona. I am so pleased to see you online again, like many others I was beginning to fear the worst. I am so sorry to hear what you have been going through but hope you have been able to draw some comfort from all your virtual friends. You seem to have a lot of support out there, just ask if you need something, I’m sure help will be there for you. Welcome back.

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