I have spent years apologising for being me, so much so that it has been conditioned into my brain pattern that as soon as I affect someone in a different way to what I expected, my only reaction is to apologise. Before I know it, “i’m sorry, I shouldn’t have done that, I shouldn’t have said it that way, its me not you” is out of my mouth before my brain has a chance to kick in and actually bring a bit of sense to my world.
This behaviour of mine started long before the depression and the anxiety came about, in fact it started about fourteen years ago when Champagne Charlie came into my world. We met on a bench in South West London, we worked in stores that were next to each other and I often noticed that I may have caught his attention, I just wasn’t sure. We started talking and never looked back, well I think my friends did, to say they had some reservations was an understatement. But, I, at the time was not looking anywhere apart from the future. I was too busy dreaming of engagement rings and houses to think about the negatives, whilst the girls were looking towards the next relationship disaster.
Champagne Charlie was and is controlling and very manipulative, he had this way of ignoring me for days on end, driving me out of my mind, till I was a crumpled ball on the floor, crying like a banshee and begging him to come home. Invariably I would spend days staring at the phone praying he would contact me, lighting up his mobile with apology after apology, until he eventually bothered with me and came back like the proud peacock that he pretends to be.
There were so many instances where I had exactly the same behaviour, I would try so hard to try and raise the thoughts and feelings that I was experiencing, hoping that he would listen rather than call me horrible names and storm out the door. For the first few days I would be strong, “I don’t care, I’m not going to be treated like that, I deserve more than what he is offering me”. I would descend into bottle after bottle of wine before the girls were coaxing me through another “break up”.
I would continue to tell the girls that I was fine and getting over it, whilst all the while I was secretly sending the same range of text messages apologising for my behaviour and allowing him to continually dismiss my feelings. What I felt for him was almost unreal, I put him above everyone and everything because I was in this for life. So it never mattered how much he hurt me because I would always make sure that I could fix it and the best way I knew how to was “i need to change, I can be better for you”.
I spent nearly half of my life working on Champagne Charlie’s time, which didn’t matter how long he kept me waiting or if he “forgot”me, how he spoke to me, when he decided when he was going to pick me up or put me down again. He even went off on holiday for ten days without me and because I had the audacity to actually have an opinion on it, can we guess what he did?
This has been the normal pattern that we have gone through for so many years until this time. It was the straw that broke the camels back. Thinking back on it now I probably should have left a long time ago, I shouldn’t have settled for what he was offering, which really wasn’t that much. It was me cooking dinner for him after he had been to football, Friday night movie on the sofa and a Saturday night sleep over that consisted of me watching his open mouth as he snored after he had been fed. It was almost like having a child except I didn’t have the partner to share the responsibility of it with and I didn’t get the wonderful experience of becoming a mum, I just ended up with a fully grown child.
This time I vow that I will never apologise for who or what I am, because if I didn’t do things the way I do, it wouldn’t be me and for what the people who love me say, that is the person that they want to be around everyday. I will never again let someone dismiss my feelings or make me feel any less of the person that I am. I will not under any circumstances let someone destroy what little confidence that I have and turn me into a person who is scared of her own shadow. I now understand that I do not have time to play games unless they are in the bedroom, or apologise if I’m being too excited or too passionate about something because after all I am the girl who wants it all, and when I want something normally I get it!
If you didn’t do it your way, it wouldn’t be you