So, what if I told you this blog, fresh from the interweb's womb, is in fact the result of me quitting another well-established blog?
Yeah that's what's up.
I quit another blog, this travel blog to be exact, one I helped build, and wrote on diligently for three years. The last two years saw it grow, becoming a place where people came together over shared life experiences and hopes for the future. I really never envisioned it becoming a space where people engaged regularly, but maybe that's part of it's success; expectations were low, creativity and honesty were high, way back in 2014.
Some of my writing on one topic, minimalism, gained quite a lot of attention, which lead to me publishing an eBook on the topic, something I readily play down and am always reminded to let myself feel a little bit good about. Its the biggest project I've undertaken since my no-big-deal 10,000 word dissertation, 5 years ago! It certainly won't be my only literary contribution; gonna go for something a little less niche next time.
Why am I starting over?
Because that brilliant little blog was not simply owned by me, it was a joint venture, also run my partner in crime/boyfriend/best-friend.
Sadly said person of many labels remains best-friend, but has been stripped of the other titles...
We have decided to separate and I am giving him full custody of the blog.
It wasn't actually a tough decision, not really. I don't think something we've created together should be destroyed in the process of our unravelling. Yes, I gave a lot of time and writing energy to that blog over the years, so of course I am sad, but my partner really is the creative and technical glue that holds it together, he always was.
He was always a little more committed to it than I was, especially toward the end where the blog felt like a weight around my neck. I just couldn't give it my all when other things in my life were not going to plan. I no longer wanted to write from the perspective of a happy couple travelling the world, because everything was in a state of flux and I didn't know what I wanted any more; travel-wise, career-wise, everything-wise.
Yeah yeah, our two years travelling was a bonding experience, something we will never forget and are glad we shared, yada yada yada. But man it had its moments where if I could have wrote a blog post about the truth behind our Insta's...
My last posting on the blog certainly put it out there that we were having problems, as we had chosen to travel separately for a few weeks. But things transpired differently, in a manner that is still ongoing. We are still travelling together for example, and have done so for several weeks since I arrived in Thailand. But the end is very nigh, in a few days actually.
I doubt that we will ever detail the reasons why our mini-break is turning into the real deal, being that they are personal to both of us as individuals.
I truthfully lost interest in our blog months ago, whilst he steadfastly added posts, was a Pinterest machine and always engaged with our readers. So, he gets my first blog in the 'divorce' and its one more thing in the long list of things that are about to radically change for me.
Our blog together isn't more important than who we are as people, what we need and want going forward; sometimes you just have to let go and start over in all aspects of a partnership.
We have both been through the mill the last few weeks, with more milling yet to come. Meanwhile we have enjoyed our time in Thailand and you will have seen this online if you happen to be a previous reader of mine.
I am surprised that I haven't completely crumbled yet, save a few tearful days and moments of teetering on the edge. And if some crumbling is still to come, I know I can deal with it.
I have definitely reached a place of trying to approach this stuff with strength and positivity as a reaction to my past.
For many years now, I have suffered with mental illness. Whether its waking up with a sense of insurmountable dread that eventually subsides with a little self-care, to complete loss of emotional control for days, to persistent over-thinking and nasty inner-dialogue, I have always had ‘issues’, something that when admitting I internally eye-roll at myself. I eye-roll because I don't like these feelings that besiege my daily life, believe it or not.
I eye-roll because the emotional shit and the frequency at which it comes tires me out. A person is after all more than their emotional problems or trauma, and most of us would like to get back to who we are and what we care about, but are too sick to do so.
None of us seek to be incapable of doing basic things, things society expects of us, and I certainly didn’t choose a mind that doesn’t work as well as I need it to, as well as I would prefer it to in-line with my perfectionist attitude. But I am learning to cut myself a little slack and be a friend to myself, because I am not all to blame, none of us are.
I believe I need time alone to attempt to finally kick my head-cold so to speak. I also think my best-friend needs time alone to just do whatever he wants or needs, and to get back to who he is.
I do think what we had together was and will remain special. Despite my issues I stuck at things, enjoyed it, embraced it and felt the happiest I have ever felt. And then the lightness dulled a little, the bubble receded and the old demons re-entered the room. They never actually left, I just temporarily had them on mute because the love was pretty and refreshing, an addictive high and a fervent distraction.
It doesn't always take two to make a thing go right.
I don’t think it takes two perfect (pah, why does that unattainable concept even exist in my vocab) actualized individuals to form a happy union, in fact I know people who believe their other half completes them, and knows how to love them regardless of their problems.
This isn’t the way it goes for everyone who has emotional baggage however, because it isn’t really the responsibility of any individual to come and fix us. They have their own stuff to deal with, or if not, they might not want the tougher stuff you bring to the table.
Often we end up resenting this completely fair truth because that would mean we have to confront our issues ourselves, possibly alone and possibly in a more extreme manner than we ever have before.
I'm just making this shit up as I go along.
I haven’t the vaguest clue how the next few months will go. I have no idea if I will make head-way in my goals or if I will find myself more content with my past and my future, but I know that I will have plenty of time in which to contemplate everything.
There won't be the distraction of caring for someone else each day more than I care for myself, nor will there be the complication of juggling two people’s needs, wants and schedules. Of course these are the staples of a committed relationship and they aren't bad things, they are often a mutually beneficial balancing act, but one capable of becoming unbalanced at the same time.
I gave so much of myself away these past four years, I need to regain a little of me back and make something healthier from the pieces.
I don’t know what my future holds but I like to think I have the tools to make it a good one.
I don’t have iron-clad mental health, but my body works, something I intend to appreciate and improve further.
I won’t have my person of 4 years, but I have a loving family and the most special of friends, support I am very lucky to have.
I might not have the world at my finger-tips for the first time in years, but I will have my home.
I am starting fresh and losing some big things, but I have a lot to be thankful for.
Took a few paragraphs but I have a tissue in-hand now and it sucks. But it won’t always suck.