Happy as….

Standard

A sparrow with a French fry?

A pig in shit?

Errrrr….

I am so very, very happy. And excited!

I love London. Just love it. All the little doubts and worries in my mind abour running the marathon have been diluted by spending a couple of  days here.

I cannot help but contrast it with my last trip to Europe. I had an upgrade to business class,but I cried all the way to heathrow. Grieving the end of a marriage. Feeling insecure in a rebound relationship with a guy who was not that into me (and, in retrospect, he was not really worth my time).

I was unsure of myself. At odds with myself. Feeling angry and guilty and confused. It was all just an ill defined feeling of shit, which threatened to tip me into another bout of depression.

I got back from Europe, got the douchebag to show his intentions. I went into a tailspin, and could not really see the point of anything. Dark, dark days.

Then I thought “this is bullshit”.

I looked up from the bottom of the hole.

I got myself a new therapist (I suspected the previous one had her own issues).

I took a breather from dating. I decided that I had to tackle my loneliness head on. I joined a social group, and went out. Did normal things like going to see movies, with other people.

I started in- earnest training for the marathon. IN this, I had to show consistency and focus that I had not yet shown before in athletic pursuits. I could not afford to go feral, as is the temptation when when one finds oneself newly single.

(however, for the record, there has been  good measure of debauchery, and very freaking fabulous it was too)

At the beginning of the training, I felt slow and fat. I felt like I didn’t belong there, especially on the long runs where there were all these fit, lithe gazelles. I felt like a fraud. And, to a degree, I still do.

Then, I thought “No! I have a right to be here!”

Sure enough, the inner bully shrank, and in her place came …… Well, not quite Xena warrior princess…….but somebody with a burgeoning sense of self belief and worth.

The whole- body ache I had when I started was replaced with strength and endurance. At the end of some of my latter long runs, I felt damn near invincible.

I did end up getting back on the dating scene, but with a new approach. Less end- game focussed, more about getting to know myself, others and the world. It is amazing how much I learned about my own behavior through watching others. I had fun (mostly), and enjoyed a rip-roaring social life. My company needed to be booked in advance. Did it affect my training? Probably. Would I have done it differently? Hell no!

Underlyingthirds great social life was some anxiety about being home alone and idle…. As though I would fall in a screaming heap if I stood still.

Fatigue set in, and I learned that I would not self- combust if I slowed down a bit. I spent the odd Friday or Saturday night at home alone, in front of the Telly, resplendent in my trackie daks.

I started owning my life. My choices. Saying “this is me, and I am loving it”. Accepting my flaws and learning how best to work them in. The latter was learned via a few disappointments. And a fuckload of therapy.

I worked out what I needed- not the material things, but things like affection, physical contact, things like that. I worked out how I could best obtain them, without compromising myself.

Recently, I found myself irritated with people commiserating my single status on Facebook. I thought ” I don’t have a problem, my life is fucking fabulous”…. For sure, I wanted a partner, and occasionally struggled with lack of cuddles, but it was at the back of my mind, not the forefront.

But somebody came out of the woodwork…….early days, but lovely. So lovely.

And here I am, in London. Excited about the 42.2. A bit trepidatious about the pain….. Yet, writing this, I realize how far I have come, and the pain I have already endured. I have triumphed. 42.2 does not seem like that far now.

I look in the shops, but want for nothing. I enjoy the sights,sounds. I have patted dogs, smiled at people. I went to Jo Malone, and purchased some nice smelly things I had promised myself, and got a hand massage there. I bought a pair of jeans at 70% off at Anthropologie. I bumped into Melissa George! She was gracious enough to let me have a photograph with her! I have met some lovely cabbies and met up with friends.

I am so happy.

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