I completed the London Marathon!

I really can’t put Sunday into words. I finally did it! I completed a marathon for the first time in my life. And not just that but the London Marathon! After about a decade of watching the full coverage on TV and always saying “I could never do that!” I fucking did it! Yes, I was slow, but I didn’t stop running once. And I’m proud of that.

The crowd support was like nothing I have every experienced. Strangers shouting my name, cheering me on, telling me I’m “magnificent” or “a legend”. It almost brought me to tears at one point.

High point – overtaking a rhino
Low point – being overtaken by a submarine

The Mind cheering stations were the best, I just felt a connection to the cause and it felt amazing.

Little kids smiling and shouting your name. Strangers actually smiling at you and holding eye contact for a brief second whilst cheering you on. It made it all worth it.

And seeing my sister (the last time I will see her before she leaves to start her new life abroad – I sobbed into my girlfriend’s shoulder when I finally said goodbye), my girlfriend, my best friend and my Mum at the finish line ♥ AND I didn’t feel like I was going to collapse after I’d finished. I had my beer and chocolate and felt fucking triumphant!

The pain the next day – it was agony, but it felt like a trophy, like I’d truly earnt it. And I bloody had. I couldn’t be happier with myself ♥

I FUCKING DID IT!

not a poem, just love – day one

I’ll pick you up at the station, 12:18
We’ve been sending each other nervous selfies
I’ll have our playlist on in the car, and when we finally see each other
serendipitously,
our song comes on.
The one that’s been spinning round our heads for weeks.

You’re in my car now and I can’t quite believe it,
and I don’t know what confidence possesses me
but I say “come here” and lean over the parking brake
and kiss you for the first time.

I don’t think it’s even been 30 seconds since setting eyes on you,
but already something feels like it’s clicking into place.
A huge sigh of relief.
Or coming up for air.

I’ll drive you to the lake,
and even though I’m a nervous driver
with you in the car I feel safe.
You’ll laugh at my terrible maneuvers,
and tell me I’m doing great
(even though we both know I bumped the curb).

We’ll walk around the lake,
hand in hand, like we’ve spent the last month dreaming of,
stopping to kiss each other on the forehead or the cheek
and to finally say “I love you” out loud.

We’ll get back in the car,
and you’ll laugh and cheer me on as I rap the entirety of perfect gentleman to you on the journey back
to my place
to my bedroom.

My landlady isn’t home.
Thank god.
And we’re finally alone.
No screens and earphones,
real life and in person
and neither of us can barely contain ourselves.

We’ll punctuate our kisses with muffled “I love you”s
we’ll tentatively edge closer to each other,
we’re both giddy-drunk, swimming through a teenage-dream-like haze of
clothes and then not clothes
lips frantically covering every inch of skin possible
making up for lost time
until we’re both spent
but still wanting more.

And still wanting more is how we have to leave it,
as I drive you to the station at 6pm,
as we reluctantly kiss goodbye one more time, just one more time…

and that, that was the first date ♥

closure

Today I found an old letter from you.
A letter from you.
Wishing me well.
“I hope this finds you well”
Sending me my stuff from Thailand that I’d left.
That it’d only taken you more than 6 months to get around to doing.
But you’ve “been busy”.

God.
It was almost like one of those round robin Christmas cards.
“I’m doing so well”
“I’ve been so busy socialising”
“I’m truly living my best life”

You even had the audacity to sign off
“love from”.

Well, fuck you.

scared

How can I possibly be scared?

I’ve run out of “scared”.
I’ve done all of the scariest things already.
Saying goodbye to you at the airport.
Leaving you for good.
Even though every fibre of my being didn’t want to let go of you.
Didn’t want to turn around and see you for the final time.
Boarding that plane.
And leaving Thailand, alone.
That was terrifying.

Leaving behind all I knew.
All that I loved.
Everything that I was sure about.
Knowing in that split second that our hands let go of each other, that I’d never hold your hand again.
Never have you to turn to again.
Never share our bed again.
That was terrifying.

That felt like having the earth pulled from beneath me, and realising I didn’t have a parachute anymore.
That was scary.

I came home alone.
Never the way it was meant to be.
But I had to.
There was no other way forward.
And it felt like having my heart broken twice.
That was truly scary.

Surely I’ve ran out of things to be scared of? Surely there’s nothing more to be afraid of, when you already feel like you’ve had it all taken from you?

4. Hold up.

I wrote this a few months back

Tomorrow should be our 4 year anniversary.
Four years since that night we lay on my bed,
hands barely touching,
baring all.

Hold up.

Maybe I should reframe this. That’s what a therapist would do.

Four years since you cheated on your girlfriend of the time.
Four years since you were weak.
That kiss was you being weak.
Not owning up to how you truly felt about your then relationship, and instead letting it blow up.

Four years since you broke someone else’s heart.
I really hope she’s moved on now and has found someone who will show her more respect than you did.
I hope she’s happier now.
I hope tomorrow passes without her even thinking of you, because she’s managed to put it all behind her.

You were a coward. You still are.
You shy away from all emotions until it reaches breaking point and then you let it all blow up.
Without any warning.
I bet she didn’t see it coming either.
The way I didn’t.

You did exactly the same to me as you did to her.
You didn’t speak about your feelings, you actively lied about them, and then you threw a curveball out of nowhere.
Poor her. Poor me. Who’s next?

Was I always just a getaway car for you?
Was the magic exactly that – just an illusion?
A trick of the light,
sleight of hand.

I always look back on 13th January 2017 with such fondness – because I thought it was the start of something really special.

Maybe it’s time to take off the rose-tinted glasses?

little life update

Things got very dark for me in the six months since I returned from living abroad.

I’m coming out the other side now.

I read back through the poems/pieces I wrote back then, and I feel like I’ve put some distance between how I was then, and how I feel now.

I’m healing. Slowly. But slow progress is still progress.

And I don’t want to delete those poems either. Because my feelings were valid at the time. And still are valid now.

But I’m doing better.

Touch wood. Because I still have OCD, don’t I?

(And for any of you wondering, love exists after heart break. And it’s even sweeter for it.)

where are you?

i’m anxious about my new job.
and where are you?

i’m crying because my anxiety has become so overwhelming that i don’t think i can go on anymore.
and where are you?

i’m questioning all the life choices that led me here, wondering at which turn it all went south.
and where are you?

i’m looking for a hand to hold beneath the sheets at night, when terrors wake me.
and where are you?

i’m searching a sea of strange faces for your familiar gaze that feels like coming home.
and where are you?

i’m looking for reassurance that i’ll be okay on monday; i’m looking for your support.
but where are you?

where are you now?
seven hours ahead.
almost 6000 miles away.
i left you.
on a different continent.

but how i wish things were different.
how i wish i’d never had to leave.

i’m so resistant to the idea of monday because it means that i’m definitely moving on with my life. it’s the next big hurdle.

and you won’t be there.
beside me. telling me everything’s going to be okay and
squeezing my hand.

it’ll just be me.
by myself.

and who am i?

chapters

i thumb through the pages of our old life.
stopping
on the pages
where i’ve folded over the top corner.
to revisit those memories again.

nepal.
towersey.
ten y fan.
non-descript evenings spent listening to music, drinking red wine and putting the world to rights.

but i can’t keep doing it.
romanticising the past.
religiously reading back over the pages of the life we once shared.
once loved.
those chapters are closed now. i know.
and i need to move on. i know.

the more i thumb through the old passages
the more
blurry
the words become;
i’m misremembering them.

it’s like rubbing salt into a wound
that i was tending to
and slowly
healing.
it’s like ripping it at the careful,
methodical,
heart-broken
stitches
and leaving it
open again.
ugly and gaping.

i know, i should pick up the pen and start writing
new chapters,
for my new life now,
without him.
not defined by him.
or anyone else.
but defined by me.
i choose the narrative.

i should grab that pen and start writing immediately.
but my hands drift back to the old chapters.
the familiarity.
the warmth of an old flame.

I feel like,
what’s the point in continuing writing,
when your best work is already written?

when you’ve already peaked?

the silence & the sound

Empty.
Clean.
White.
Silence never sounds like it’s supposed to.

Silence is an echo chamber
of words unspoken,
and anxieties welling up to the surface.
Bubbling, bursting through the millpond of the mind.

Silence is an empty dancefloor
once the music has been turned off
and everyone has left
except you.
You’re left with the ringing in your ears, and a scratching in your throat
from screaming to be heard over that
deafening
silence.

Silence is an empty railway tunnel.
Gaping and anticipating
the next train of thought, coming along
bulldozing it’s way through the temporary vacancy between your ears.

Silence is a forest,
full of moss-covered rocks just waiting to be overturned.
Patches of fog hang despondently between the listless branches
Don’t peer too close, you might scare yourself
with the weight of all the things you do not know
that lie in the gloaming.

Silence is the gap between the thunderclaps.
That is all.
The rain it still pours.
And the echo of the last distance rumble
tumbles around your hollow head.

Silence is the torchlight of the interrogation.
Why weren’t you good enough?
When did it all go wrong?
Why are you like this?
Why can’t you just move on?

The silence
it never stops.

creativity #4

aching, the
body can feel it, the
crushing weight of your absence.
drought for the soul.
everything is
fine, i’ll say, i’m doing
good
how have you been?
i‘ll ask you
just to start a conversation. it’s more than
kind of sad, that we’ve gone from
lovers, to
messed up, to almost
nothing.
only we knew what we had, a
patient love, that grew
quietly, over time, like the confluence of two
rivers coalescing. they
say
time changes people, but i didn’t think it would change the course of
us, and now here i sit, staring
vacantly at the blank
wall, i’ll still finish my messages with an
x
you don’t. you’ve already
zoned out.