Living life on the edge...
..on the edge of madness.
That's how I describe myself.
Man Wonderful describes me as quirky.
Either works for me!
I love being just outside what seems to be the norm in our society, having spent many years conforming to expectations.
I was a secondary school teacher, I was married to a Royal Marine, I took out finance for a new car every four years, I had a mortgage, I ironed almost everything, I did my big shop every week.. Yadda yadda.
But apart from teaching (which I loved) none of it felt like me.
When first husband took off (as first husbands are wont to do), I began feeling freer.
Although I was still working full-time and parenting - this time on my own which is harder in some ways - I felt far less tied to how I should be living my life.
I ditched the finance-laden car and bought an old Mini - a car I'd always fancied driving. I only ironed posh things! If I didn't want to cook a bloody roast every Sunday, I didn't bloody cook one! (Ahem!)
I decided the mortgage was too much for me, and put the house up for sale. I was going to move to a cheaper, smaller house for me and my chick.
Then I discovered the amount of debt first husband had tied into a second mortgage - with my name on it too...
So. The house had sold, he was living with someone else, I was laden with my 'half' of the debt and potentially no choice about where to live with little chick: who had just started at the local primary school.
That's when Man Wonderful stepped in.
We had worked together for two years. He had fancied me and I didn't know..and I thought he was - well - a wonderful chap.
I went into work and sat with my coffee at break time pouring my heart out to a couple of girly colleagues, and Man Wonderful. At the start of the lunch break he asked to talk to me. I assumed it was about a pupil, so I followed him and when we were clear of anyone else, he bent down and kissed me.
He immediately apologised, but I said, no; do it again! We kissed again, and it was amazing....
I was quite taken aback, though incredibly flattered!
He said he had wanted to kiss me before that but when he heard me saying I had all my things packed up and no house, that he wanted to put his arms around me and put four walls around me and little chick.
And so began the relationship with Man Wonderful that has - up to this point - been 21 years..
He is retired, I work part-time teaching the piano, we live in a tiny house by the sea and near Little Chick and her brood.
We've been through bereavements, illnesses, hardships - holidays, laughing, creating and living life.
Today we spent an hour walking on the local beach hand-in-hand. This evening he will cook while I sit in the same room reading things out of the newspaper or just chatting.
We live life differently, quirkily, on the edge..
but wonderfully, fully,
and very much in love.