It was a bit of a whirlwind romance, so there was only one birthday when we were together but not married.
I had no plans for the day, so he suggested I should go out with his cousin for lunch and a film. Well, she’s nice enough and the film was ok, but it wasn’t what I would’ve chosen. Then again, what would I have chosen? And would I have enjoyed it any more? I didn’t really feel competent leading my own life, so I didn’t feel confident to say, “No thanks, I don’t fancy it.” There would’ve been an argument and I’d’ve looked foolish.
Then back to his. I was settled in the front room with a book as friends started arriving. They all went through to the kitchen, but I wasn’t allowed to join them. He was stressed and needed help. It was obvious what was going on; I have a feeling he even told me he was organising a surprise party for me. Where exactly the surprise was in that, I don’t know, but it did get boring waiting – and worse, I felt left out and rather superfluous.
Eventually, we decamped to someone else’s house for the actual party. Most people drifted out to join H-to-be in the garden; I got stuck in the kitchen with someone who talked endlessly. Then again, I could think of nothing to say myself, so what did I expect?
There must’ve been more to the party than that, but I can’t for the life of me remember what, only that his cousin had sharp words with him for treating me badly; and then later she spoke to me about how he’d been behaving, said I didn’t deserve it, reassured me and made me feel I was worth more. As I say, I don’t remember what had happened to prompt that conversation, but I have a vivid memory of feeling that if I left him, I’d miss his family more than I’d miss him.
Actually, it’s worse than that, if I’m honest.
I think I may have thought that it’d be worth marrying him just to be able to keep in touch with his family.
What a screw-up.