Sunday was a beautiful spring day here.  I opened all of the windows in my house to release some of the stagnant energy and to let the sunshine in.  My two cats were curled up on the sofa in a sunbeam that had entered through the front door.  Everyone that has cats know how they love lazing about in sunbeams!  Odin had been scrapping with a neighbourhood cat and had received a scratch to his nose, so after all of that excitement he had got himself comfy on the sofa for the rest of the afternoon.  Freya lay curled up next to him but she was on alert.  She could hear all of the birds twittering away and it held her interest for quite a while.  I sat for 10 minutes or so just watching these two,and every day I am reminded how they saved my life.

This year it will be 3 years since Pedro and Felixia (their rescue names!) came to live with my then husband and I.  My ex husband and I were due to move into our first house as opposed to a flat and he knew how much I wanted cats.  P never grew up with animals like I did, so he wasn’t really bothered.  He left the “cat hunting” to me, so I started checking out rescue centres for kitties.  P being the kind of pompous twat that he was, would have preferred pedigree cats.  He was all about showing off and status symbols, but I’ve never bought a cat in my life.  Every pet we had when I was a child was a rescued animal.  I chose to adopt my two from a Spanish rescue charity.  My reason for that is because my family have also adopted animals from foreign countries, mainly Spain due to the way that they are generally treated out there.  So I checked out my chosen charity’s website and fell in love with a grubby, skinny little half Russian Blue street cat.  The charity exclaimed that they could only rescue Pedro if someone paid a deposit to have him because they were short on space in the rehoming centre.  I got the money together, sent the payment and Pedro was safe from the cruel streets.  I then went on to another Spanish charity and asked who needed rescuing the most.  I wasn’t bothered about colour, sex, age etc.  I just wanted to home a cat that needed it the most.  So I was offered a little black and white cat called Josephine, who was struggling with life in the rehoming centre surrounded by so many other cats.  Unfortunately just 3 days before she was due to come to England, she became poorly with a virus so she wasn’t able to come over at that time.  The charity asked if I would consider taking another cat on in Josephine’s place.  Josephine not being well enough at the time meant that there was a space for a cat on the transport which the charity try so hard to fill all gaps before starting their journey to England, which meant no one was getting adopted in Josephine’s place.  I felt bad for little Jo, but they assured me that they had found another home for her once she was well enough to travel again.  So I was offered Felixia.  My ex husband said that she was “ugly”, but I didn’t care.  Of course, she wasn’t ugly at all. She just had a grouchy looking face, but that’s one of the things that I love about her!  She is the sweetest little thing I’ve ever known.

My cats arrived in the country on 15th July 2014.  I must’ve driven friends and family crazy in the lead up because I was that excited about getting them!  I remember picking them up from Portsmouth and bringing them home for the first time.  Odin was so, so timid.  Freya was an instant lap cat!  They’re both such different characters.  Another reason why I love them both so much.  Odin was straight from the streets and even the television and washing machine had him baffled.  He would sit and watch them nervously!  Slowly he came out of his shell and it’s taken a few years, but I think we’re there now.  Freya has always been full of affection but she used to hate being picked up.  She now knows that I’m not going to hurt her and she loves being held as I dance around the house with her.  Freya was rescued from a “killing shelter” with her 5 kittens.  Sadly 2 of them passed away due to a virus, but a lovely lady in Spain has kept her 3 remaining kittens and has given them their forever home.

When my marriage fell apart, I was a mess.  I felt like I wanted to die.  My ex husband had been caught having an affair and ended up in a psychiatric hospital.  I would visit him in hospital, (something that most people don’t understand, but I will perhaps explain my reasons in a future post) and it was so exhausting.  Mentally, I was shot.  But when I came home from a long day at work where I wore a false smile that hurt my face and then travelled to the hospital to watch my husband curl up in the fetal position and sob uncontrollably until visiting hours were over, Odin and Freya were there for me.  They brought me such comfort during those dark times.  I used to lay on the bed with them whilst they purred in my ear at the end of those long days, and I used to think “So this is what unconditional love feels like”.  And that’s why I generally prefer animals over people.  Odin and Freya have never intentionally hurt me, and they never will.  They are always there for me.  I know that they love me, and not just because I feed them! 🙂

On the really bad days where I wanted to take my own life, they were close to me.  They had already suffered abandonment once in their short lives, how could I do that to them again?  I know that no one would love them both like I do.  Odin has a lot of quirks that I don’t think people who had not owned cats before could handle.  Freya is very demanding of affection.  What if her next owner didn’t give her that?  And on the days where I just lay in my bed, festering in my pajamas and staring at a wall for 3 hours solid, Odin and Freya encouraged me to get up.  Someone had to feed them and clean out their litter tray.  No one else was there.  Honestly?  If I didn’t have Odin and Freya, then I really don’t think that I would still be here now.  I’m beginning to think that we rescued each other.

And now that the bad days are over, I have company.  The three of us depend on each other.

With love, Darling Soul x





Visiting the Outlaws.

Well, here I am kicking myself for not writing sooner because I have a whole tirade of stuff to bore you with!  But I’ll probably break it down into separate posts.

So the weekend before last, I went to visit my ex inlaws (I kind of want to call them my outlaws, that sounds more fun!) for the first time since P and I split up for good, which was around 14/15 months ago now.  It was before any of us knew about his affair and we still thought that he was just having a quarter life crisis of something.  We had still stayed in touch after the break up, despite my ex husband displaying his clear dislike for the continued relationship with my outlaws.  But the feeling was very much mutual.  Why would I break off the relationship with them if they wanted to stay in touch and were upset by their own son and brother’s actions?  In fact it was them who invited me to see them.  I kind of thought that the connection we had would tail off, but I guess I was wrong.  They don’t live too far away from me, a couple of hours drive is all.  So after my meditation class, I got in the car and started my journey.  I was fine, singing along to music and carrying on the peaceful feeling leftover from my meditation class.  Then as I got closer, my belly started to do flips.  When I could see their house from the road, I felt so sick that I thought I was going to have to pull over and wretch.  I felt ridiculous for feeling this way and I don’t believe it was nerves about seeing them, I just feel like there are so many memories of us wrapped around their house and where he grew up.  Memories of much happier and carefree times and of when I felt like I would never have to search for someone again because I have found my soulmate.  I pulled up to their house and parked my car where I always used to park when he and I visited.  I got out and walked to the front door, closing the front gate after me before ringing the doorbell and waiting for someone to answer whilst my stomach continued to flip upside down.  I knew who would answer the door before they even got there.  My ex mother in law.  She opened the door and was elated to see me.  She grabbed me, pulled me in close and gave me a big squeeze.  When she squeezed me, she must’ve squeezed some water out of me somewhere because I just cried and returned the squeeze.  Then my ex father in law appeared with a warm smile on his face.  He was always such a lovely gentle giant of a man.  He scooped me up with his big arms and gave me a squish.

“Lovely to see you again.” They both said.  My eyes continued to leak.

I walked through into the kitchen and my two ex sister in laws walked through and greeted me with sweet smiles and tender hugs.  It was clear that they had all missed me.  How could such lovely people have created the monster that was my ex husband?  Then my nephew came down the stairs (I don’t like to call him my ex nephew, it sounds odd).  Almost 18 years old.  I have known this boy since he was 11 and he has grown up dramatically both physically and mentally.  He gave me a big hug and I felt his teenage beard fluff scratch across my cheek and I laughed through my tears!

We didn’t speak about him.  Even when his brother came to visit with my other two nephews, his name went unmentioned.  There was no sign of him in the house either, and I don’t believe it was for my benefit.  Where there used to be a little shrine of photos of him, there only remained one photo and it hid right at the back behind two of his sister’s wedding photos.  The photos of him that used to be on the walls were gone.

We had a wonderful evening, laughing and chatting away.  They enjoyed the wine and chocolates that I had brought them and I equally enjoyed (if not more) the delicious lasagna that my ex mother in law had made.  Just how she always used to!  She even made mince pies (in January!) especially for me because I didn’t see them at Christmas and she knows how much I love her mince pies!  If that isn’t love, then I don’t know what is.  I went home with his sister that evening and stayed at her place.  We stayed up past midnight putting the world to rights, having a bit of a gossip and a catch up.  It was perfect.

The next morning, we got up and then headed back to the outlaws for a cooked breakfast. Before I went home, we went to see my ex sister in laws’ new house that she and her husband are hoping to move into in the next few months.  She said with hope that the next time I visit will be for their housewarming party once they’re settled in their new home.  Well, that made me feel good.  Another invite!  What would P say, I wonder.  And M, his new love interest and the woman he cheated on me for.  But you know what?  Who gives a shit what either of them think.

Some people think it’s weird that I still have ties with the outlaws.  They think that I can’t possibly move forward while I still have contact with them.  But how is it fair to cut them off?  They didn’t ask for the shit storm that their son and brother rained over all of us.  They were just as surprised, angry, hurt and disappointed as I was.  They didn’t raise him like this.  They are really good people with warm hearts.  It’s not like I will ever bump into him when I spend time with them as he lives on the other side of the world now.  The best way for him to escape his demons and the hell that he created.  And personally, I feel that it’s testimony to me and how I behaved following his affair that they want to stay in touch. And I’m actually quite proud of that.

With love, Darling Soul x

One year on.

This time last year, I signed for the keys to my house following the separation between my now ex husband and I.  In all of my adult life, I had never lived alone and I remember almost shaking with the anticipation of what was to come next.  I had no idea what to expect or if I could even do this.  I wanted to prove to him that I could do this without any of his help.  “Put your big girl pants on and just deal with it” he used to say to me, even throughout our relationship.  He was adamant that I was incapable of being on my own, when in fact the irony in this is that that actually mirrors his own feelings.  He has proven to the world that he is incapable of being alone by hopping from one woman to the next, never really understanding himself.

I remember walking down the mossy slate path to my new home and turning the keys in the lock for the first time.  My heart was thumping in my chest as I explored each room, picturing where my furniture and belongings would go.  After all, I had no one to tell me where I could and couldn’t put my things now.  I imagined my cats sleeping by the fireplace after a long day of playing in the garden.  I could see myself with my feet up on the sofa, cup of tea in one hand and a book in the other.  I could see myself in the garden laughing with my friends on a warm summer’s evening.  I was eager for the memories that I would create in my new home; alone.  Then when my furniture arrived and was put in place by the removal guys, I was given some paperwork to sign before they left.  I sat down on the sofa and it was so quiet, I could hear their truck’s engine start as they then drove off down the road.  I suddenly burst into tears and I don’t think I stopped crying for a good 20 minutes or so.  For the first time since my marriage fell apart, I was totally alone.

Seeing this photo of me holding my new keys for the first time has had me reminiscing about probably the hardest time in my life.  I am smiling in the photo yet I look beyond exhausted, following weeks of going back and forth emotionally as my ex husband played games with both my heart and the heart of the woman he cheated on me with.  Mentally I was exhausted too, after supporting my ex husband during his time in a psychiatric ward.  He had threatened to take his own life after his bubble was burst and he had simultaneously lost both his wife and girlfriend in the blink of an eye as we finally found out about each other following nearly 5 months of deception and lies.

I wish I could go back to this time a year ago, and tell myself that it’ll all be okay.  When times are hard, everyone tells you that things will work out eventually, but at that time you don’t believe it.  At that time, the pain I was suffering caused me to almost take my own life.  This is not something that I am proud of, but it is the truth.  To be honest, the only thing that stopped me from doing it was my cats.  That probably sounds stupid, but I had two little souls in fur coats that depended on me and loved me unconditionally.  I rescued them from a very bad start in life and it wasn’t fair of me to put them in another bad situation.  They saved my life.  And I am so grateful for them, and my incredible friends and family for being the constant in my life.

Over the past year, things have slowly fallen into place.  I am settled now into my solitary home life, which is something I have come to enjoy.  I take great solace in doing what I want and when I want, no one to question me or answer to.  My life had always revolved around my ex husband you see, his wants and needs and even his career took over my life. My next puzzle piece will be securing a position in a job of my choosing.  Because of my ex husband’s career in the military, mine always took a back seat.  We moved often and I was never able to fully settle into a role.  It’s my time now.

With love, Darling Soul x

PS. When you’re having a hard time and nothing seems to be going right, remember…this, too, will pass.



When the past rears her ugly head…

So I’ve been separated 1.5 years nearly and divorced for 4 months already.  So why has the past decided to show her face just as I’m really starting to move onward and upwards with my life?  The past has come in the form of my ex husband’s new fiancée.  The woman he left me for after living a double life for 4 months before getting busted.  You’d think she was happy, y’know.  What with rocking up and turning my life upside down and all.  But to me as someone who has spent some time reading interesting articles on narcissistic people (my ex husband was one), this smells of trouble in paradise.

I’d had a really lovely Christmas away with my family and had just got home from my break.  I’d decided to take an extra day off before going back to work so I had time to do some household chores before beginning the mundane life of the office again.  I set my alarm bright and early so I could gently ease my body into early mornings again after a few weeks of practically zero routine, and I woke up in a reasonably good mood…until I saw a message from my ex sister in law followed by an email from my ex husband’s beau.  I still have a really good relationship with my ex inlaws so it’s not unusual for us to stay in touch, plus I’m going to visit them at the end of the month.  So basically, M (the ex’s latest victim) has had some nasty things posted on the internet about her and she’s come to the conclusion that it simply has to be the disgruntled ex wife and/or her ex best friend, J, who fell out with her over M wrecking a marriage.  I can understand her thoughts however, if it were me in her shoes, I would be checking the evidence and doing a bit of digging before going in both barrels. At the end of the day, she works in law so you would think in her line of work, it would be important to check the facts first.  Apparently not.

The email from M read:

“If you or any of your friends, including J, post any additional comments/photos/images/thoughts about me publicly on the internet as of and after this date, I will be forced to file a defamation suit against you and J.  I have investigated the issue and I have an attorney involved.  This issue needs to stop immediately.  Time to move forward.”

“Time to move forward”.  No shit, M!  I already did, a long time ago.  It certainly sounds like M hasn’t moved forward, does it?  She’d gotten my contact details from my ex husband too and had decided that emailing to my personal account wasn’t enough.  She sent it to my work email too!  I waited a good 6 hours before sending a slightly heated but well worded reply, to which she replied back trying to justify her initial contact.

So I can honestly say it wasn’t me.  I did some digging online with a friend that only took me a few hours to do and I can now confirm that it isn’t me (I knew that anyway of course!) and it isn’t J either.  I know who it is and for some reason, they have a huge grudge against M.  I could tell her, but I’ll let her trip herself up first.

In other more exciting news, I went on a date for the first time at the weekend!  Might seem like a small feat for most, but I’ve been battling with my own head for a while about meeting someone else.  To go through everything and I have been through, the thought of giving someone else a bit of heart (as cringy as that sounds) makes my chest hurt.  I just don’t know if I have anything left to give.  But I gave online dating a shot and although I when I was on the train to meet my date I was shaking like a leaf, I needn’t have been worried at all!  He was lovely.  I didn’t intend on staying out as late as I did and we didn’t stop talking so that’s a good sign.  He put me at ease and we seem to have a lot in common.  Too early to say if it could go anywhere, but it was a nice confidence boost if nothing else.

With love, Darling Soul x

More than words.

So yesterday I was at the doctors surgery.  Once my appointment had finished, I left my doctor’s office and headed towards the front desk to schedule a follow up appointment.  They play music in reception and guess what song was playing whilst I waited in the queue?  My first dance song.  The song that my ex husband and I chose to dance to for the first time as husband and wife while our wedding guests watched us and took photos.  It’s such a beautiful song but the last time that I heard it was the morning of my ex husband’s flight to the USA, which was where he had the affair that ended our marriage.  We had stayed in a hotel the night before his flight when he found the song on YouTube and took my hands so that we could dance together before he went away.  I remember sobbing my heart out as we slow danced in our hotel room.  I didn’t want it to end.  I had no idea that the next time I heard that song, it wouldn’t fill me with romance or sweet thoughts but it would stuff me full of anger and painful memories.  Sometimes I’d just be out driving somewhere and my playlist would be on shuffle and the song would come on.  Those first few notes of the acoustic guitar were enough to make me seethe and stab furiously at the skip button.

But yesterday as I stood in the queue being forced to hear it, I no longer felt resentful.  Of course, I instantly recognised it and realised its connection to me and someone who was once one of the most important people in my life.  But I felt nothing.  I just appreciated the song as I once did before I met my ex husband.  And it was the BEST feeling!  I knew at this point that I had finally made some progress in my recovery since our very turbulent breakup.  I’ve had a lot of days lately where I’ve felt like I seem to be going no where fast and that I’m treading water, especially in regards to him and the damage that he has caused.  This is a small victory but I’m grasping it with both hands and enjoying it, along with the song itself!  I am beginning to heal, at long last.

No doubt, you’ll want to know which song it was.  Here it is. Enjoy, as I know I now will!

With love, Darling Soul x

8 months ago.

I made this blog 8 months ago and I’m only just beginning to write in it.  Which makes me wonder, where was I 8 months ago?  Physically, I had been my new home for about a month.  Mentally, I was in a bad place.  I was becoming more and more anxious and struggling to deal with the day to day stuff in my new life.  So here we go.

This time two years ago, I was very happily married.  My husband was a soldier and we were preparing to move home 200 miles away.  I was pretty happy with my lot.  Then in May 2015, I found out that my husband was due to be posted to the USA for 7 months.  It was an unaccompanied posting, so I would have to wait at home for his return.  Little did I know that I when I kissed him goodbye for his flight to the States, that would be my last.

Modern technology made being apart easier.  He used to call me on FaceTime twice a day, although with a 6 hour time difference, it could be difficult.  One weekend, he hadn’t been in touch at all.  I had tried various methods of getting in contact to no avail.  I started to worry about him.  The thought of him with someone else never once entered my head, but I was thinking he had gotten drunk and hurt himself, or something equally stupid.  After three days of no contact (bearing in mind we would speak every day), I contacted one of the wives of another soldier who was out there with him to see if he had been in touch with her husband.  Her husband hadn’t seen him for the whole weekend.  Cue panic from me and his colleagues.  Eventually he turns up and can’t understand the fuss.  Of course, he then blames me.  Says that he is now the focus of ridicule from his colleagues and that he can’t believe I went that far to get in touch.  Was he forgetting that I was his wife?  It was at that point, he went cold on me.  Stopped phoning me so often and kept a distance in his messages.  I couldn’t work out what was going on, but just figured that we’d not seen each other for a few months and that this was normal stress for couples spending so long apart.  He was due to come home the following week for RnR, so I was sure that things would get better and I would have my husband back in no time.

The day he came back, he was a completely different person.  I had not seen him in over 3 months and he was only home for a week before he went away for another 4 months.  He should have been all over me like he usually was, but he couldn’t be further away from me.  It was like he couldn’t stand the sight of me.  I put it down to jet lag and continued to make more excuses for him.  The following day we would travel up north for his sister’s wedding, so I was sure that things were going to get better but even his family noticed his odd behaviour.  The next day in the hotel room, he said he was leaving me.  I was utterly distraught.  Why??  I couldn’t understand.  His reasons?  None that made any sense but here’s just a few:

  • He could no longer deal with my self-esteem issues.
  • He never wanted the cats that we adopted together.
  • He felt that we got married too quickly.  Nevermind that he proposed after 3 years together and we were married in our fourth year together.
  • He found my “lack of ambition” frustrating, which by the way, is something I don’t have…ask my friends and family!

So yeah, take your pick.  And with that, he was gone.  Spent the rest of RnR at his parents house before he flew back to the States and left me in a cruel suspense as he would drop me and then reel me back in when he suited him.  It was at this point where I deteriorated rapidly.  I lost a huge amount of weight.  It just dropped off me.  Some people eat when they are stressed and unhappy, I however am the total opposite.  I wasn’t sleeping and I wasn’t eating.  There were points where I would just lay there, festering.  Unwashed and still in my pajamas, staring at a wall for hours.  Luckily I have some wonderful friends who helped me to get out of that state.

Before I knew it, December was upon us.  He had been speaking to me when it suited him, giving me that little bit of false hope whenever he felt like it.  We had been speaking more at that time and he had begun using words like “us” and “we” and “future”.  On the 9th December (I remember the day like it was yesterday), he called me to say he was going to kill himself.  I spent hours talking to him and comforting him.  Then I received a Facebook message from someone I didn’t know.  It came through as a filtered request. I opened it and it said:

“Hey, you should check out my profile and see what’s been going on for the last few months.  Would love to talk, here’s my number.”

I felt sick.  I clicked.  I was faced with a profile picture of this woman who I shall refer to a “M” and MY HUSBAND, “P”, kissing.  I didn’t cry, or scream.  I just felt sick and numb to the core.  P came back onto Facetime and I greeted him with, “So who is this M person?  She seems nice.”  His face just dropped.  Facetime doesn’t hide people’s facial expressions. Suddenly his urge to take his own life became that much more substantial.  He had been caught out.  He was grasping at straws, anything he could!  He was begging me to stay with him.  Apparently, she was a pill popping alcoholic and a really awful person.  He wanted me.  But to her, he had said I had cheated on him (oh, the irony!) and that he never wanted to get married in the first place.  He was enjoying playing us off one another.

So the Army sent him home.  He was assessed and sent to a psychiatric hospital where he stayed for about a month.  Right over Christmas and New Year.  I visited him on numerous occasions.  He couldn’t look me in the eye but I forgave him, because if I didn’t, it would continue to eat away at my soul.  I didn’t blame M.  She had fallen in love with the same illusion that I had.  P was actually was a narcissist and a very dangerous individual.  Whilst he was in hospital, we talked about making things work and starting again.  Then two weeks later, he stated he wanted to be with M before coming back to me in the New Year and begging me not to leave our marital home.  Then he went back to the States for “closure”.  That is where I was finally able to say NO MORE and I ended our marriage.

January 26th was the start of my new life.  That was the day that I moved into my new home where I would live on my own for the first time in my life.  Thankfully not totally alone as I have two wonderful rescue cats.  And it has been one hell of a journey so far.  I am very proud of how far I have come and I still have such a long way to go.  I’ve really only just touched on the hell that was the breakdown of my marriage.  He is now discharged from the military and he lives with M.  M & P are now engaged and we are divorced, but I won’t give it long before he shows his true colours.

So what do I want this blog to be?  I’m not sure, really.  I think I’d like to share this new independant journey that I’m on.  I’d also like to share how thrifty I’ve had to become, along with my spiritual journey since starting a meditation and spiritual class in September last year.  I don’t even know if anyone is going to read this, but hey, got to be worth a shot!

If you’re here, thanks for reading.

With love, Darling Soul x