Eleven months have passed since I moved into this house and away from Tom, I don’t even want to think about where I was emotionally this time last year. Certainly not where I am now. Sat, on a sunny and warm Sunday afternoon, enjoying the peace that comes from all the kids being out for the day. I’m relaxed and feeling content, which got me to thinking about the men that have played a major part in my life.

This has all come about because of Craig. I can’t really describe him as a major man in my life at the moment but he certainly takes up an awful lot of my thinking time. Everything that I’m experiencing with Craig is new and strange and makes me feel uncomfortable, in the sense that, it’s so unknown and so uncertain and I’m craving the certainty of knowing that I am wanted and loved that you only gain when you’re in a committed relationship and yet I don’t know him enough yet to even know that I definitely want that with him.

With Danny and Tom, there was an instant and very passionate spark. It literally took over my life, with Tom I couldn’t sleep it was so bad. With both, I thought it was love within a matter of days. It wasn’t. Greg is the exception to this. He’s the man I spent the most years with, almost eleven, and yet I never loved him enough.

Then there’s Craig and no matter how hard I try I cannot put into words what this is, or what it might be but I do know this. I like him and that’s the first time I’ve ever been able to say that about a man. I like who he is – his character, his geekiness which makes me smile, his warmth, his energy, his honesty. He’s calm and relaxed and happy. I like him the way I like my friends. I want to spend time with him because I enjoy his company. I like how I feel when I’m with him. I’m relaxed and comfortable. I can be myself and not worry about him judging me. When he laughs at me, he’s not doing it in a nasty way and after years of Tom laughing at me and judging me negatively, it’s such a breath of fresh air. If I could let go of my fears of him turning out like Tom, I think I could share anything with him and become really intimate. I’m not talking sexual intimacy, I mean, in-depth, letting him really know who I am inside intimacy and yet alongside these feelings of friendship there’s more. There’s an attraction building that wasn’t there at the beginning. I hate saying that because we’re conditioned to believe that you should feel the spark with someone for it to mean anything but I didn’t with Craig. The first time we met I felt nothing but at ease and comfortable with him. I wasn’t sure whether to see him again because I thought that there being no spark meant there never would be but over the last eight months it’s been very slowly simmering away. I look at him and I can feel something that wasn’t there at the beginning. I want to spend more time with him, I want to get to know him more. I want to kiss him and cuddle up with him and do normal things with him, not just jump into bed with him.

I’m finding myself wanting to see him more and more, for lunch or a drink or anything that just means spending time with him, being next to him. I have denied how I feel about so many things for so many years and I just don’t think I can do it anymore.

I’ve found myself stepping out of my comfort zones more and more in recent weeks and I think this is the way to go. It’s the only way I’m going to really grow and get to know who I am and what I am capable of, ultimately, finding out if I’m capable of loving someone intimately and allowing them to love me intimately too. I think that will be my biggest test.

Yet despite all of the above, I just can’t help feeling that deep down, if I’m really honest with myself, the attraction is less about him and more about what he brings out in me. Since knowing him, a bit of the old me has come back. He’s made it okay for me to be silly, fun, dirty, sexual. Everything that Tom tried to suppress, Craig has awakened in me. He’s brought me back from the brink of emotional death to this life so full of feeling. In all honesty, I think it’s me I’m starting to love rather than him. Maybe that’s not a bad thing though.

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