Tearing at the Fabric

Of the space-time continuum


The nicest night

Just had the nicest night. Dad is feeling a little better, not full of that chest infection, and the pain, manageable.

So I accepted a dinner invitation with my friend, Bella and her family. I could leave Dad for a few hours.

Our racehorse trainer was also coming. So I took my work boots, and helped load the horses who were returning to work with him. One of them was a lovely liver chestnut just turned three year old filly (that day, Southern Hemisphere horse birthday) that I have a share in.

And Bella cooked us a luscious salmon side, with roasted veges and salad. We knocked back a bottle of champagne as a toast to both of our recent birthdays.

Bella is an ex, repeat fuck buddy of Roger’s. And old friend. She and I grew up together. Through pony club, etc.

And she has been very supportive of me, telling me that what he did was horrific, and that I am worth so much more.

Last night she raved about how wonderful BG is.


Random. I didn’t see that coming.

She first met him in November last year, at my daughter’s 21st (I still always go to write “our” about the kids, but there is not really anything shared anymore. They are my kids. I know they all have found a way to deal with their relationships with their father. But we are rarely a team regarding them. He just wrote me out of the script…)

I was surprised, because I thought Bella would be loyal to Roger. Many are. He is slick. I keep my mouth firmly shut around mutual friends. Wary of who might be Switzerland.

But she said she was so impressed by how this man, this stranger, just slotted in. Moving around, topping up drinks, checking everything was going smoothly with the DJ, food, etc, quietly introducing himself and chatting. He made an impression.

She is not the first to tell me this about that night.

Then, she has seen him many times with me at the races with the mare we race together. He loves racing and is enthusiastic and engaging with the other syndicate members. And she says he is always very sweet, loving and attentive of me. She says I glow in his presence. The old Paula, pre-Leanne, back. She is relieved, and says Roger dimmed my sparkle.

She asked me, “Paula, where did you meet? And how the hell did you find such a lovely guy, I hear they are like hen’s teeth at our age, and what you went through with Rog was brutal. Must be hard trying again after that heartbreaking clusterfuck.”

What a sweet girl. I didn’t know she saw what I do about BG. I did know she is disgusted by what Rog did to me. Lying, cheating, discard.

They said they were with their son yesterday, who plays on the same cricket team as a mutual friend’s talented son. And the mutual friend, a lawyer we know, went to boarding school with BG. They discussed with him that they had met BG. Or, as his friends all address him, (my last name.) She said, how weird is it that his nickname is your surname? I just said, there are more weird coincidences than that…And listed a few. She shook her head laughing, and said, “Oh, God! Fate!!!”

Sure. Okay. Lol.

Anyway, it was lovely to spend horsey time with people I enjoy.

And then this old gem popped up on my feed.

And it stung a bit. I always saw this and applied it to Roger and myself, just totally adored that man before Leanne. Thought we had nailed this relationship thing. I know I worked my arse off at it, and felt so very, very blessed. The love was the deepest. It really was.

Wish I’d fucking kicked him out then, on Dday all those years ago. I thought I always would if he cheated. It would have saved myself a decade of utter torture trying to be what he wanted after Leanne exposed who he is. So he could just do it again. And this time leave me.

After seeing the card front above, I just thought, I won’t ever be that mushy with anyone else. I won’t ever share it with BG. Our relationship is so very, very different to how Rog and I were. There are filters now. I didn’t have them installed with Rog. I just trusted him with every part of me. But it kind of applies to BG and myself. He waited 45 years to fall in love, properly.

And got fucked over by a cheater.

I got fucked over in my 40s, then again – the worst – at 50, by the man I stupidly made the centre of my world.

And I was thinking about the world we create for our families. The stories. And how, one day, Trinket will be asked her story, perhaps by a grandchild. “How did you and Grandad Norm meet, Granny?”

What will she have to say?

“Well, Grandad Norm was living with this evil bitch, who was so mean to him. And I rescued him. The End.”

“Isn’t that called cheating, Granny?”

“Oh, technically, I suppose, sweetie. But the end justified the means. He made me a cheater because he told me lies about the mother of his children. But that’s okay. Her heart didn’t matter. Only mine.”

Never again! I won’t ever think like that about a man. Love of my life bullshit.

But yeah, we have slowly, gently, beautifully – cautiously – fallen in love.

I haven’t ever had a spontaneous ILY from BG. He has said it, but not often – he’s not Rog, doesn’t spout it every day – and not just from nowhere. When it comes, it is precious. But not in an I’m-hanging-onto-this-pearl-desperately sad kind of way,

He says it to his sisters and mother regularly. I know he has a fully functional emotional range.

Until yesterday. When I got two. Just RANDOM ILY messages.

Out of nowhere.

Funny guy. He forgot a phone charger, so his mate, Andrew, sent me morning messages because BG couldn’t. How high maintenance do these guys think I am? Is this what their wives expect? Lol. I wasn’t stressed. But “he’s alive,” along with a photo of him pouring tea…”And drinking tea. Like a nana.”

I sent back a laughing emoji, wishing the guys all a good day’s golfing.

Oh, and Nana, too.

He bought a charger and charged his phone later and sent through loads of pics of their accommodation, wines by the fire, as they watched rugby. The last pics coming through at 4.50am.

Lads. The are a wonderful crew of boarding school mates.

And I feel so honoured to have been welcomed into the inner circle.

He’s never done that with anyone before, apparently.

I have been told he was considered the ultimate single guy. A bit of a Lothario maybe?

Andrew’s wife Imogen smiled widely at me one night, And said, “(my last name) was sent here to satisfy many women. He’s respectful, but just never found The One. We all love him to bits. And are so glad he has found you at last.”

No pressure!


Um, what?

Well, ah, so this happened.

I was driving home late from work and I got a message from Rog. Asked me to dinner with our daughter and her friend. In my town.

My first instinct was to ignore it. But we have an accountant’s meeting tomorrow, so I was kind of, almost, in the right head space to see him.

It’s been four and a half months.

So, I drove my little dog home, she comes to work with me most days, and let the big one out for a run. Fed them both and jumped back in the car. 15 minutes later, I was in a restaurant with them!

It was honestly so bizarre. He shuffled over on the bench seat he was seated at, smiled and we had a nice dinner. He rubbed and patted my thigh at one stage (???) and still constantly calls me darling (chortle, I don’t think I am your darling, my bear 😉) I think all just habit for him.

Play nice, Paula. No choke hold happening here tonight!

I then ensured a bit of physical distance and we chatted about friends, light conversation about how he is doing, etc. (Note, no mention of me, my health, etc, lol, all good 😉) After all, he is not to know there has now been a brief discussion about the possiblity of looking to see if family members are a bone marrow match. Just in case.

Our daughter and her friend left, and I thought it best to exit not long afterwards, too. Quick kiss goodbye, pay the bill, outta there, chick!

He looked … tired. And puffy. He has gained a little weight, not lots, but no longer walking around our hills after stock, and shaved off his light beard. He grew one a couple of years ago, I quite liked his beard. On older men it can help disguise a softening jawline, etc. His bald head needed the clippers over it, a bit longer than his usual almost shaved head that I think looks crisper.

I came home and felt okay. Just very, very deeply sad that he gave up everything, our special bond and long, long love story, for this. We still seem to like each other. Had Trinket not existed, who knows?

Of course, it is not her fault. He had been looking online for over a year before he found her.

There is always that.

I asked him if he was staying with his elderly, recently widowed Dad in our home town, nearby.

Nope. Friends. Who he saw just a week ago.

Bloody hell. I am sure his father would have enjoyed having him 🤔.

Oh well. This is who he is now. I know.

So. Tomorrow I am prepared for the accountant.



You know, you would think after twenty-six years – the first twenty-one of which seemed to be pretty smooth, like we could communicate – and two and a half years of different types of therapy, that two people would be much better at communicating and avoiding conflict.

Wouldn’t you?

Well. Apparently not. Apparently you get worse.

Our middle child, our son, finished high school this week. He still has exams to go, but it is another milestone passed. We had his leavers’ dinner on Thursday. I actually really enjoyed it. When our eldest finished, I endured that dinner. He has a bunch of great kids, talented kids, as classmates. They are a tight-knit group, as my final year at high school was, also. Interestingly, I felt a little more emotional about this one than I did his older sister, four years ago. I think it is about the fact that this means my full-on parenting years are drawing to a close. Next year I will have just one child left at home. And for half of the year, she will be on foreign exchange. The four head students all performed, the head girl, a self composed song, the other three a lovely little musical number – all awesome kids, academic, sporting and cultural stars. And damn nice humans with it. My boy’s year lost a delightful girl this year, just a couple of months ago, to a terrible car crash. The deputy head girl – a talented speaker and actress – made mention of her in her very eloquent, very entertaining, very hilarious speech. Our lips all wobbled badly. Then she recovered well and we all carried on. The speaker after her was the Dean of their year, a truly lovely woman, dedicated teacher and total mother hen – the kids have loved her. She delivered some motivational words, words for the kids to take forward with them. I loved them, and I recalled my own leavers’ dinner, and thought how there may well have been similar words delivered, but I can’t recall them. Youth, not only is it wasted on the young, but inspirational words often are, also! Amongst her beautiful words was a moment about how to treat others, with respect, and to respect yourself. Always. At least, that was the part that resonated most with me.

Of course.

Rog knew I had heard them, had no doubt reacted emotionally to them. I didn’t show anything on the outside, but inside I was dying. Did he acknowledge this when we got home? The next day?

Nope. Just bury your head in the sand and forget you heard/saw any of that. I know why. He is sick of my emotions after five and a half years of them. I don’t really blame him for that. But I brought it up this morning. We had no kids home, and I thought we could talk. I just said I was disappointed he didn’t acknowledge some great words, that he must have known would affect me, trigger me. He replied that he felt awful when hearing them, yes, he is an arsehole, but he can’t change what he did. I replied that I wasn’t asking him to do anything but say, “wow, Mrs W’s words were pretty great, they really affected me, I know they must have affected you.” He got a bit angry, saying that he hates bringing any of it up, because I am still so upset. I said I was mostly upset because after all this time, I am frustrated that it still hurts so much, but I can no longer talk about it often, as it is yesterday’s news, and I have made little progress, and he seems to ignore my feelings, hoping they don’t exist. He agreed, and said that he knows that I am constantly triggered and upset at “life” and that he knows that I have been far more damaged than he ever imagined I ever could be when he lost his mind and felt an affair would solve the problems he wouldn’t share with me. And he can’t fix it. He is a fixer. He then asked, “should we separate now?” I answered that I still don’t believe that will make my life better, and I feel we can mostly do a good job of getting on well enough to launch these teens. But that I always feel like my feelings are ignored. And I talked about lying, both to your face, and by omission, and how the whole of our time together I thought he was 100% honest, but he has lied throughout. He looked at me and said, “I don’t think I lied to your face, until the affair, when I discovered, to both my relief, and horror, that I am a damn good liar.” I didn’t go there, but I know he has lied to my face. Not often, not well, usually. But he lied about fucking a prostitute when I asked him, he talked it down to a drunken hand job. That was an outright lie. He lied by omission a whole lot more. I feel like I don’t know how to take anyone at their word anymore, and I can’t seem to take that much needed leap of faith, to start to trust humans again.

Staying together the way we have lately, as flatmates would be fine, but he still wants to be able to cuddle, to be close to me physically. I can’t. I can’t do that without some emotional support. I told him this. I can’t stay here, and be his “teddy bear” for the physical comfort he so desperately needs, without him providing emotional support for me.

He understood. Apologised.

We are just both so damn frustrated with this non-recovery.