My break from blogging has lasted longer than I'd hoped, but the event for which I'd been waiting has finally passed so I wanted to post an update and an explanation of why I stopped when I did.
My last posted internet dating tale took place in early 2004. Shortly after that I began a relationship with a woman with whom I'd been friends in real life for several months. A very brief summary of my view of our relationship would be: the first year was wonderful; the second year was good; the third year was pretty good; the fourth year was tougher; the fifth year was a struggle; the sixth year was a much harder struggle. In late 2009 and early 2010 our relationship teetered on the edge. Just when it needed some luck it instead received several body blows and it fell apart. We spent a lot of time talking about whether it could be saved but my feeling was that too much had been said which could not be reversed; our communication was still heavily hampered; our life priorities were diverging and adding to the strain. I ended our relationship in May 2010.
Once I'd ended the relationship I wanted to go our separate ways as soon as possible to begin recovering and moving on but there was an obstacle to this: we had bought a house together in 2008 and still lived in it together. We talked about various options but it seemed that the only solution was to sell it. Additionally, there was no practical way for either of us to leave until it had been sold. I wanted to sell it as soon as possible. She was hoping to switch jobs first because she was working part-time and needed more income to cover living on her own.
Over the summer we found a buyer but the sale proceeded gradually. I felt in limbo in that situation, living with an ex-partner, but was also trying to give her more time to find a job. My big fear was that she might decide to try to block the sale of the house, which might drive away the buyer, and my time in limbo would be hugely extended. As part of my efforts to stay on good terms with her I decided not to mention any of this on my blog for fear of her finding it and taking offence somehow. Hence when I ran out of material concerning the distant past I stopped writing rather than progressing to writing about the present.
In late October the house sale was ready to be finalised but no job had been procured. I pushed for completion of the sale anyway and the final sale date was set for mid-November. We both hurriedly found flats to rent and it looked like my new life was about to begin. I envisaged writing a post like this straight after completion of the sale.
My new life didn't start quite as I'd imagined. Eight days before the sale I began to feel unwell. I had expected the stress to take its toll, but previously in my adult life this had involved a two-day cold and a quick return to health. This time after two days I felt much worse. After discovering that I had a scarily high temperature I was taken into hospital and I was diagnosed with pneumonia and some related complications. For the first few days my mental health suffered too - I was delirious and delusional and even ended up refusing my own medication at times. Thankfully after a few days my normal mental state returned and I tried to be a positive influence in my own treatment program.
The house sale went through during my hospital stay, so my freedom had arrived but I was in no fit state to start to make much use of it. My ex-girlfriend did very kindly carry out the final sale-related tasks which I'd been planning to take care of. She moved to her rented flat and her job search continues as far as I've heard. I sincerely wish her well with both of those endeavours and everything else.
After eleven days in hospital I was released into the care of my parents, who have been wonderful throughout this whole ordeal. I've been staying with them now for eight days, soaking up their hospitality/food/old clothes/spare painkillers/attention and gradually learning to breathe more deeply again. I think I'm on the mend but it may still be some time before I get back to my rental flat (which I haven't seen since the day I collected the keys three weeks ago) and my job. This wasn't my plan for my new start, but I'm lucky to be hopefully making a good recovery from a serious illness, and hopefully at some point in the not-too-distant future I'll get the chance to make the kind of new start which I'd originally had in mind.