I think I’m single again. The boyfriend has packed his stuff and gone. To be more precise, I packed his stuff, and now he’s gone.
Why? It will sound like nothing to you. Last night, he said he’d be home by 7pm, and by 11pm, I hadn’t heard from him. Deep inside me I felt a kind of seeping dread, like I was watching an old movie that I already knew the ending to, and it’s not happy.
My ex husband used to say to me: ‘just popping out, back in ten minutes’, and then he wouldn’t come home til the next day. The boyfriend knows this. How reliability matters to me. How my ex husband called it ‘mickey mouse’ values, but to me, it just meant knowing how things stood. So when the boyfriend didn’t send me a text last night to say ‘out with friends, back much later, night’ or something similar, which would have made everything completely fine, I decided to pack up his stuff. By midnight it was all assembled and sitting in the pantry so my children didn’t see it in the morning.
It’s not the first thing that’s happened, of course. There have been a few of these things, perhaps more than a few; when he’d say he’d do something and didn’t; that he would pay a bill, and then didn’t. And it was like these things had accumulated into a tottering pile making him more and more like my ex-husband, and last night, that was just one thing too much on the pile and everything just collapsed.
The pain is bad. Because I love the boyfriend. It really hurts. It makes work hard, the day too long, the future something I daren’t contemplate. All the hallmarks of divorce, then.
My mother used to say, ‘the only person you can rely on is yourself’, and I’m starting to agree with her.
For the first time in a long time, I feel really defeated by this love stuff.