Thought for the Week

"A hug is a perfect gift - one size fits all and nobody minds if you give it back."

My Better Half - pt2

Following on from last Mondays part 1 which can be read here... and ended:

..... That was the first time I really saw his softer side. He liked to keep this personality trait well under cover. He didn’t like people to realise that it existed and rarely displayed it in public.....

At some time in the next couple of months, whilst we were at a small, village located disco, a friend of mine, M, took a shine to G. My boyfriend and I gave them a little encouragement, shall we say, and they started dating. For me it was great, I figured that if he was dating M, I might get to interact with him more often. Strangely, I don’t remember ever feeling jealous, although I was fully aware of my own feelings for him, I had a boyfriend, and a son to consider, and I knew that nothing would ever happen between G and I. I also knew that I would never do anything to orchestrate a situation, or allow him to guess that I had any kind of feelings for him whilst I was committed to another relationship.

Theirs was not a not a match made in heaven. I remember hearing G comment on the fact that the beer goggles he was wearing the night of the disco were the worst he had ever worn. He didn’t fancy her in the cold, sober, light of day. They did continue to see each other for a short while however, and during this time M house sat for a neighbour of ours on the estate we both lived on.

One empty house, two young couples, a couple of the group of friends from the pub, plenty of beer and a bit of whacky baccy!!! (Give me a break, we were all young and foolish at some point!) We layed on the floor drinking, smoking and playing some silly board game. I can’t remember which one, I just remember that at some point G’s feet and mine were occupying the exact same area of carpet. My gut reaction was to move mine. He didn’t even seem to be aware of the contact. I immediately kicked myself and gradually engineered them back to where they had been. Just that smallest amount of contact had made my heart flutter and I remember telling myself that I was just being a stupid, flighty, teenager who should know better. The beer continued to flow and the joints continued to do the rounds. I had rarely drunk so much lager, I wasn’t really all that keen on it, and I had never mixed alcohol with the occasional smoke I had tried in the past. I began to feel slightly unwell. Then the doorbell went. M answered the door and came back to report that my sister was on the doorstep and needed to speak to me.

My journey from the living room floor to the front door is possibly one of the longest, most difficult journeys I have ever endured. I crawled to the living room door and then willed my legs to work before I was visible from the front door. I felt sea sick. The room was spinning. I was having a hot flush. My legs wouldn’t support me. Somehow, I made it to the front door and spoke to my sister. The moment I closed the door, I stumbled back to the others, declared I felt extremely unwell and collapsed in a heap, how very sophisticated!! My boyfriend just laughed at me. G told him to be serious, as best you could after smoking that stuff anyway. He got me to the window for fresh air, and gave me lots of water to drink and offered words of comfort. His care only served to further the feelings I was already harbouring and how I wished he would always be there. I always felt safe with him around.

Eight months later, I was single again. My boyfriend was not cut out for family life, had no wish to be a father, then or since in my mind. He had treated our son badly, but details are not necessary, this post is not about him. He had come back and given it a try, but at the end of the day, he was just too selfish for it ever to succeed. He announced it was over again, after which I discovered that he had been seeing someone else for the past month. Second time around, I wasn’t devastated like I had been the first time. He had done me a favour really, and the more of life I saw, the more I realised I’d had a lucky escape.

My thoughts though, kept turning to G. The pub we all used to frequent was across the road from where I worked and many times I wanted to ring G and ask if he would meet me for a chat and a drink. Given that I was just the ex-girlfriend of one of his mate’s I wasn’t sure that he would, so I hesitated to make the call. Eventually I plucked up enough courage to call him, and was very surprised when he agreed. He turned up on his motorbike, in his leathers, a Kawasaki 400 I believe it was then. Just to see him again made my heart turn cartwheels, but I had to remind myself this was not a date, it was just 2 friends meeting for a lunch drink.

Over the next few weeks, our meetings became more regular, and our friendship began to turn into something more. I would daydream about spending my life with him; I knew I was already falling in love with him.

We would meet at lunch breaks and share time together, just the two of us. This for me was precious time that I always looked forward to. Inevitably, the time away from the others in the group allowed us each to see the real person underneath the exterior that teenagers wear as part of a group. Not that either of us had ever tried to portray ourselves as something we weren't, or tried to hide anything about ourselves, but in groups at that age, there is a lot of bravado and scarcely little on the emotional front. I would sit and look straight into his eyes as he spoke to me, listening to everything yet hearing nothing. My mind was in another world, a world where we were not surrounded by other people, a world I knew I would never taste. Then I would go back to work with my head in the clouds. I consoled myself with the idea that even if I couldn’t have him as a partner I could have him as a friend, and that would be enough.

We would see each other sometimes in the evenings when I went to the pub with another of my girl friends and we would sit with G, my ex and others in a group, and hear those songs time and time again. Sometimes I would catch G looking at me, and wonder what he was thinking, there were never any clues in his expression. Maybe in hindsight there were and I was just to naive to notice them. He often used to buy me a drink because he knew how short of money I was, what little I had was spent on nappies and baby food, and day by day, I fell head over heels in love with him.

A couple of weeks later, he asked me if I would go out with him, I was on top of the world. I’m sure the word ‘yes’ flew out of my mouth far more quickly than it should have done, I just wanted to get in there in case he changed his mind!! In case he suddenly realised what he had asked me and apologised saying it wasn't what he meant. That was 3 weeks before my 18th birthday.

Our relationship, when it started, took off very quickly. I always knew that he was the one, always. In the early days of our dating, G was taxi driving for a living. He would often do a 12 hour day shift driving followed by 6 hours on the control desk. When he was driving, the controller would sometimes give him an 'urgent' job, and he would flatly refuse to do it because he insisted he had to pick me up in the morning and drop me at work. Free taxi, great. Even better than that though, I got to say good morning to him every day from Monday to Friday. I loved that 10 minute drive each day. I would float for the rest of the morning.

I remember one occasion when he had stayed over at mine. I was still living at home at the time, and my Dad's job meant he was up at 4am most mornings and out of the door by half past. G's taxi driving meant he would be up just before 6 and invariably I would be up with my son early too. G, back then, was quite shy around my family. My Mum always used to say he wouldn't say boo too a goose. (A few of you will see that there's a joke in their too!!) Just before 6am, the phone rang out at home. There were no mobiles then, only landlines, but it was most unusual to hear the shrill ringing at that hour of the day. Without a second thought, G picked up the phone, but he didn't say 'hello' like most people, he said, 'War Office ... who wants a fight'?

Within 14 months we had our first, beautiful daughter, and 3 months later we were living together. Later that same year we were married. Life was tough, very tough, but what got me through then was having G by my side, he made me whole and he made life worth living.

And today?

* He still has gorgeous eyes
* His smile still melts my heart.
* When he arrives home at the end of the day, I feel complete.
* When I look at him sleeping, I still think to myself, ‘How did I get to be this lucky in life’?
* Most of all, he still makes my life worth living.

Reason why I still love my husband No. 1

If you enjoyed this memory, check out my other Memory Monday posts from the link list in the right hand tool bar. I am attempting to add to this list more regularly, if you would like to join in, go ahead and put the button on your own site, then have a dig around your memories, you might surprise yourself with what comes out!


Akelamalu said...

What a lovely memory - I adore a love story! Thanks for sharing. x

Ali said...

Akelamalu ~ Thanks for reading.. are you sure you didn't doze off it was rather long wasn't it. x

Miss Understood said...

I like your long ones!

Yeah, I'm a sucker for a love story too, and that was a great one.

Go on Ali...get me the sick bucket and tell me you both still end your calls with "Love you!" "Love you too! Kiss kiss kiss." LoL.

You know I'm just jealous, don't you?

May you have many, many more happy years together. xx

Pauline said...

I really enjoyed reading that Ali, you are both lucky to have found each other.

Ali said...

Laney ~ PMSL @ your comment x 9999999999.

Here's the bucket.

Yes we do still end them like that, and if you weren't earwigging down the landline while he was calling me on the mobile... you would still be wondering....lolol

Ali said...

Pauline ~ I know that we have something a lot of people can only dream of achieving, and I'm grateful every single day.

Glad you enjoyed it. x

RUTH said...

That's so beautiful. I admit that I'm crying...with joy for you and joy for me that I too had the chance to experience this REAL love with my wonderful husband....sadly fate snatched him away....but the love will never die.
Hold on tight to each other

Ali said...

Ruth ~ I'm so glad you got the chance to experience it, and so sad that your soul mate was taken from you. Love like that can never be taken, the memories live forever.

Thanks for your comment. x

david mcmahon said...

Nothing better than a happy ending. I read all the way through and enjoyed it.....

Michael said...

OK ~sniff~ you got me with that one. ~wipes tear from eye~

Cherrie said...

That's a beautiful tale, and it's great that for you it really did end happily ever after.

Ali said...

David ~ Thank you. I try to steer away from very long posts, but sometimes, nothing else will do!!

Michael ~ No complaints abuot it being too soppy this time?? lol

Cherrie ~ End????? I'm not dead yet Cherrie, I hope I have not even reached the middle yet!!! lol

Mike said...

A lovely story Ali if somewhat slushy. I shall just stick my fingers down my throat. lol

Your beautiful daughter must have got her looks from her father :P...... Well come on you asked for that one It's called payback time lol.

mrsnesbitt said...

Awwwwwwwww! Tears brimming here!
Will have a look at the memory monday thingy!

Ali said...

Mike ~ she did get her looks from him, but she got her brains from me :p

Denise ~ Tissue? It would be lovely if you joined the great Memory scavenger hunt. Start digging dear

Akelamalu said...

That definiely wasn't me you heard zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz, I read it all and loved it!

david mcmahon said...

Hi Ali,

As a xareer journalist, I can tell you, if your writing goes with the flow, never cut down the length of a post, or an essay, or any piece of creative writing.



Ali said...

David ~ Thx so much for that advice, I will endeavour to remember that next time I wonder if I wrote too much! It's always helpful to have tips from people in the know.x