This piece is being posted anonymously, on behalf of one of the women Make Waves writers. Thank you for sharing your story and trusting us with you nine roost thoughts. xx
I’m writing this to you on the eve of my 10th wedding anniversary, when instead of cherishing my marriage I’m reflecting on missed opportunities, our inability to get our ‘act’ together, the fact that for years now, I’ve been thinking that I married the wrong man.
We met in a sleazy Spanish nightclub in the summer of 1997. I was loving life; great friends, university on the horizon and to add to the mix, I think I’d drank my body weight in cocktails! I don’t remember who spoke to who, what was said but I know that whatever happened, it left an imprint on my life that I’m still cherishing now.
It was never going to be a conventional romance. You spent most of the year away and I was off to University. It was by sheer chance that you’d ended up in that nightclub; you were heading off to sea the following day.
I wrote to you first, I wonder if you’ve still got those letters? It was before the days of texting and social media and I remember pouring my heart out to you, telling the story of my life. Feeling that it was ok to trust you, despite only ever sharing the briefest of moments in your company.
As the letters flowed between us, I started to dream of a life together. It’d be like Top Gun: Resplendent in your uniform, you’d surprise me in a bar, sing dodgy karaoke to me and we’d end up between the sheets, Take My Breath Away playing in the background. Everyone told me that it wouldn’t work out, despite a fortune teller promising me otherwise! Did I ever tell you that I had my palms read that summer and was told that a “man overseas” was in love with me?
I went off to university and had my head turned by the star football player. I told myself that you and I would never happen and got on with life. I always thought about you, hoped you were safe. Any stories of ships going down or treacherous weather and I started to panic. I saw The Perfect Storm at the cinema and nearly had a nervous breakdown!
We reconnected a few years later. My star football player had become Mr Wrong. Selfishly I wanted my ego boosting. I’m sorry for doing that to you. I remember speaking to you on the phone and thinking of how much I wanted you in my life but I wasn’t brave enough. I told myself it’d never work and I messed you around.
The years went by and I settled down. My husband is a kind, funny man. We’ve had good times. Why then did I search for you on Facebook? Honestly? I wanted to see that you’d married or at least settled down. I could then convince myself that we were never meant to be.
It turns out that at one point, you were studying close to where I lived. What if we’d have bumped into each other? Would I be here now with you or would we have exchanged pleasantries, promised to keep in touch, only to both decide that it was best to leave things be?
Over the last few years we’ve “liked” each other’s Facebook photos, exchanged comments and I messaged when your sister was taken from you. Now, I dread seeing a picture of you next to a beautiful woman. I think a little bit of me will die inside when the day comes that you share a photo of an engagement ring, a blushing bride, honeymoon adventures.
I wonder if you ever think of me. If you see the photos of my life and wonder how it would be if we were together. Who knows, you might see me as a holiday romance, someone that is firmly in your past. In a way, I hope that is how you think of me. That you feel no pain. No regrets.
I know I’ve no right to feel like this. I let you go when I could have had you. I wasn’t brave enough to try. I listened to the wrong advice. I took the easy option and didn’t fight for you.
As the saying goes, I’ve made my bed and I’ll have to lie in it. I wish you love and happiness and genuinely hope that if it ever comes to the point that I disappear off your list of Facebook friends that you don’t notice, as I’m just a long-forgotten friend.