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.”