I’ve been blogging too much, so I’m going to treat this post like a TMI to keep it short…
- First off who qualifies as an ex in my book?
Anyone with whom I’ve had a live in relationship.
Anyone with whom I’ve had a non-live-in intimate sexual relationship of more than four months.
- Who doesn’t qualify as an ex?
One night stands, dates, brief sexual affairs, swinging partners, romantic involvements and affairs of the heart and mind.
In total 7 men qualify as my exes by my calculation. My first boyfriend, Warren, lasted about a year. We both lived with our parents and engaged in kissing, petting and just once, sex (after I was legal). My first and last partners, Bob and Ric, were my intimates for 13+ years. I met Bob on the rebound from Warren. Bradley and I were together about four months when I was in my first year of uni. The remaining exes were Gary (2 years), Ryan (4 years) and Paolo (7 years).
I still see Bob several times a year as he is the father of our daughter and grandfather to the little guys. There’s been some contact via Facebook and email with Paolo, and I spent a cordial half hour with him a few years ago. I (briefly) saw Ryan from a distance last year and I could contact him there was a reason to. But there isn’t.
I have no idea where the others are now, although I wish them well wherever they are.
My interactions with Bob are shallow (what’s new) and of necessity. For years we avoided each other except when it came to matters of child rearing. We had very different ideas about that too. I tolerate him now because I want to make my daughter happy. We sank our mutual animosity at my daughter’s wedding, where he and Ric my last partner, got on disturbingly well.
Watching them exchange jokes and remarks about me scared the crap out of me. It told me something about myself and about that last relationship I really didn’t want to know. I’m still processing the sudden end of my relationship with Ric, though I’m grateful that the break-up occurred when it did, as it meant I was able to be there for Mum in the final years of her life.
The men in the second category outlined above all appeared in my life during or just after my relationship with Bob, (including Russell). They were an outcome of our youth and immaturity, differences in sexual desire, my growing feminism and desire for education and Bob’s ongoing emotional manipulation and abuse. Bob and I broke up twice, and I’m glad we got back together the second time – otherwise I would not have had my darling daughter and my grandchildren.
If I was able to get together with any of my exes it would of course be Ryan – although since he was the one who left that is extremely unlikely, and we’d probably have little in common nowadays. The ex I am most likely get back together with is Paolo. He contacted me some time ago, and we still have a soft spot for each other – or more accurately for our memories of each other. Both our lives have moved on substantially now, and although I’m sometimes tempted by the thought, I suspect it would be a very bad move for us both. You may get to meet Paolo one day, but I am very protective of him, he was a tender and gentle man, and I treated him badly, so maybe not. Time will tell.
What do I miss?
What do I miss about my exes? Intimacy and daily interaction obviously – especially where Ryan and Paolo are concerned. Being cooked for: Ryan, Paolo and Ric were fine cooks and often took on that role. Shared interests, especially a love of music and art (Bradley, Ryan and Ric). Touch. Sex…
…Wearing significant jewellery, symbols of relationship – my finger still itches if I take my rings off for any length of time.
Indigo and Isobel
Because of this feeling of loss I bought the rings you see in the photo above for myself. I refer to them as Isobel and Indigo. These two rings replace others which have been lost, discarded or returned to my exes.
- I bought Indigo after I started this blog, just prior to my visit to John Oh. Her dark blue stone symbolises both my mourning for mum and my new beginnings.
- The gold band, Isobel, was purchased second hand just after Mum and I moved in together, when I came to the realisation I would be living on my own for the rest of my life, once she eventually died. As I walked out of the door of my favorite antique jewellery store the ring on my finger, the chorus from a Bjork song (written by poet Sjorn) came into my head, and the name Isobel was born:
My name Isobel
Married to myself
My love Isobel
Living by herself
What I didn’t realise until I copied these words across to this post were the verses either side of the chorus:
In a forest pitch dark
Glowed the tiniest spark
It burst into flame
In a heart full of dust
Lives a creature called lust
It surprises and scares
Source: Bjork (1995) Post.
Lyrics: Google Play
Details and an Mp3 file on Wikipedia
To see who else is thinking about their ex this week, put a wicked ring on your finger: