Monday, 11 November 2013

Dinner at the New Place

Three days ago I visited P's new home for the first time. I was picking up baby I after seeing my counsellor. It is a lovely older style unit with high tin pressed ceilings, wooden floorboards and flooded in natural light. But furnished like someone who had just moved out of home for the first time - some loaned furniture from a friend that had seen better days, a blow up mattress for a bed, a coffee table made out of a cardboard box. Our boys love the novelty of it all.

Just over a week ago, the thought of seeing him settling in somewhere else would have upset me too much. But, that day at least, I felt fine and calm. I'm sure I won't always feel that way, but something about the lovely afternoon sun on a Friday afternoon, the boys playing happily, and me gradually accepting that I would be strong some days and to enjoy those and get inspired from them, to help me see through the low days.

P invited me to stay for dinner, and we all ate sausages, mash and salad, with plates cradled in laps on the couch, or on the make shift coffee table. And it was sort of like a normal pre-seperation dinner, but not. P didn't make eye contact much that night because he was so tired with the stress of moving and working his usual long days.

There was something liberating about leaving with baby I, knowing I would not be woken up at 5am the next morning by A. And even more liberating when P informed me he would drop the boys off at 10 after tennis so he could go back into work, when I told him I was going to a 10.30 gym class, and could it actually be noon? He paused for a moment, unused to me setting boundaries around my own needs, and quickly agreed.

That night, after I was asleep in bed I opened a beer for the first time in goodness knows how long and allowed myself to just watch some TV without also doing housework at the same time or catching up on emails or working on another task on my separation to do list. And it was kind of nice. And it's the nice moments in painful journeys you need to hold on to, to remind you it will all be ok and that things will head in the right direction.

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