40 year old goes out and Christmas adventures.

So it has been a while since my last blog and I have been thinking about 3 different blogs to write over the festive period. So here I am trying to combine everything that has happened in the last few weeks into one probably immensely boring blog.

So a few weeks ago  I started going out and trying to be more sociable and get my confidence up. I have made some mates and been going out with them, I will change their names to protect their identity (not that anyone read this). Leon is a good mate to hang round and wants to be a fuck buddy but I have put him in the friends camp so that is off the table. Dayle is also a nice bloke and I won’t have a word said about him and we have hung out but he is a bit more of a scene queen that I am comfortable with. I have met their friends and its has been great to hang out and laugh. I have a mild social anxiety so it has been nice to go out and actually relax and chill.

Until the other week! Met up with Dayle and his mates and chilled but he was very flirty  and handsy which I was not overly comfortable with. Also met up with Leon and we all know each other. Got the feeling the Leon likes Dayle but Dayle likes me for some reason. There were glances around and looks that said ‘why are you talking to him, you should be with me and talking to me’. I might have been imagining this but it was feeding into my anxiety and I suddenly felt restless and worried. The hard work I had put in to relaxing myself undone in minutes. It was backed up later in the week when Dayle asked me a few times if me and Leon were seeing each other.

Why can’t people understand that it is OK to be single and I am happy as I am for now? Why is there some unwritten rule that a single gay man must be instantly taken out by the next man that flashes him the smallest hint of a smile.

So fast forward to this Saturday just gone, I decided I want a night out to celebrate the end of working for the Christmas break and I really didn’t want to be sat at home alone at the start of an 11 day period that I was worried about. I don’t do loneliness very well and it’s the first Christmas since me and the ex split up, after 10 years of huge joint family xmas’s this was going to be very different. The ex was with his new fella and his family so I was literally on my own on the run up and after. I seriously wished I could have cancelled my leave but it was too late.

I booked a hotel room and was determined to have a good night and not have to cut it short with last trains and all. Earlier in the day I glanced on Grindr and was chatting to someone in my past, Tony, had a bit of a conversation, mentioned I would be out and he said he would be as well. Another friend Matt said he would be out, I was hesitant with Matt as he I knew liked me and had previously had asked me out but at the time I was really not in the right frame of mind.

So there I was poised and ready to meet up with Leon and his mates and catch up with some of the people above. I was a bit too early so was sitting in a bar at the back and people watching when my pocket vibrated and Tony had messaged me through Grindr and we were only a few yards away from each other. He came over, we chatted, flirted and long story short, snogged each others face off. I don’t know what came over me, I have been so hesitant to be with anyone but this was something so different.

I had to leave to meet up with my other mates and Tony was out with his friend so we swapped numbers and told him to give me a shout before he went home. I hung out with Leon, had a bit of a giggle, had a drink with Matt and that was nice considering he is a biker as well. Saw Dayle but he was’t as warm as usual, Leon had told me he had asked if we were dating because we had been to the cinema together. Of course 2 gay men can’t just hangout, they obviously have to be sleeping together.

So the night was going well, then again a rumble in my pocket, Tony. Asking where I am, he comes to the bar I’m in. In-between I notice I had a missed call and a voicemail from Matt, telling me how much he likes me and wants to be mates and more but mates is ok. I am flattered but really not worthy of all this attention.

Then I see Tony, by the bar at the other side of the room, something inside me takes over. All I want to do is get over to him and as I stand before him I am intoxicated by him, intoxicated by his everything and before I know it I am millimetres away from him, saying hello, rubbing noses and move in for a fully reciprocated passionate kiss. I will spare you the details, he stayed with me and had a lovely night talking, sleeping in each others arms and remembering the past.

We now move on to Christmas Day, the day I was dreading, I was staying with my parents from Christmas Eve to Christmas Day but I knew I wouldn’t be in the best frame of minds. So there was I was lying in bed wishing I was alone and not having to go down the stairs where I knew my parents would be happy and jolly and trying to cheer me up. The worst thing in the world when you just want to disappear for the day. Downstairs I went passed some pleasantries and took up residence in my comfy recliner chair and started reading the news. There I saw that Sarah Millican had start a Twitter campaign for all those spending Christmas alone with the hashtag #joinin. The hardest thing for me is feeling alone in a room full of people, it is a hard one to explain but it is a killer to deal with. Maybe this could help, so I had a look.

I spent hours and hours on #joinin talking to people, reading their stories and trying to help them feel better about themselves. I shared my story and received some lovely messages from others in the same boat or worse. It really put things into perspective for me, others were in a far worse place and managing, what do I have to complain about. It was a humbling experience for me, I hope that my words might have helped others, I received a lot of positive responses. For me if I helped one person feel less alone then the whole day was worth it. This is social media at its best, this is also when the best of humanity can be seen and it is amazing. I will be joining in again next year.

The rest of the day was spent with my family having a different Christmas Day, it was subdued as my brother is struggling at the moment. The idea was had to play board games, something we haven’t done for a long time and it was brilliant. An old school Christmas Day with my family. Where were tears from us all as it has been a challenging year for us a family and the one thing we took away from the day was that we need to be around each other much more often. I love them all very deeply.

And finally….Boxing Day. This was a day I always spend doing nothing but eating and sleeping and watching films but I broke some many traditions…

  1. I wore outdoor clothes
  2. I showered
  3. I went outside
  4. I spoke to other people

…and it was all Tony’s fault. We had texted and we wanted to spend sometime before he went home to the deepest darkest ‘That There London’. So we spent the day talking, films, laughing, snogging and relaxing. Had a second Christmas lunch at the local pub and it was just so nice.

That brings us up to date.

So in summary, when did me, at the of 40 become a dick magnet? I am flattered but seriously I’m not all that. I must me maturing well into my looks. I haven’t even mentioned the hot South African bloke that tracked me down after a one night stand in a hotel room or the Dutch bloke from London. Xmas was expected to be hard going but it wasn’t and I am so pleased it wasn’t. Maybe there is a fella I want to spend some time with that can make me feel comfortable?

Who knows but I wasn’t expecting to be here, I was expecting to be at a Dr’s surgery begging for Anti-depressants and more Valium to get me through it.

I hope you all had a great xmas!

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Go….stop….pause…and go again.

So it has been a very long time since I blogged and I just don’t know why that is to be fair. Let me fill you in…

So the last time we spoke I had been a 2 dates and they weren’t going to be taken further, if I didn’t tell you that before well that’s some news for you, sorry to leave you hanging all this time. Dating took a back seat to be fair and I think that was a good choice as I decided to embark on a new adventure.

Go….So I have been at the mercy of public transport all my life near enough, never really learning to drive and to be fair that was mostly coming from a complete lack in interest in cars, driving and the whole costs and expense of it all. I have a free trains pass so that get to the places I need or want t get to so it’s always been fine. Add to that I have always had a fella that has had a car and driven me around to the places I have need to get to. As we know now this is at an end (I’ll come back to this).

So research time, what can I do, learn to drive a car, or something else. Is there a way I can be mobile at a much cheaper cost to my purse. Introducing Biker Si!

So I took my CBT within weeks of deciding this would be my course of actions. My reasoning being that bikes are cheaper, cost less to run, less to fuel and less to tax. The CBT I took over 2 days but this was not because of me, this was more to do with the person on the course with me lost the plot when we were out on the roads so we had to keep stopping. Trust me dear reader I made many mistakes, many a time I came to a stop on a cross junction and repeatedly stalled the bike. I even almost killed myself doing practice laps.

Needless to say having never driven in my life and it was all a lot to take in and get used to in such a short time frame. So next was the safety equipment. I researched and read all I could about the best and right gear that I could afford and plumped for leathers.

I think I look pretty good to be fair but fair more importantly I would be safe, well as safe and you can be. Fully lined with all the relevant protections. The helmet, boots and gloves followed. The next thing was to just go and buy the bike. I could only have a 125cc bike because I was on a provisional with only my CBT so far achieved. I decided to wait for the warmer weather of spring to take it further and gain my full licence and more powerful bike.

So with the bike bought (Yamaha YBR125) it came to the fateful day I had to pick it up. I was hoping for some clear skies and decent roads, I knew it would be cold but I couldn’t do much about that. The ex had offered to take me over and come back with me and keep behind me to stop any arsehole drivers killing me. So it began with a trip to the petrol station, £12 filled the tank. Woo Hoo! Of course the heavens open, rain, wind, hail, brimstone, it was like the apocalypse. Maybe I am exaggerating a little but trust me only a little. Apart from being in the outside lane of a dual carriageway doing 30 in a 60mph area and getting in the wrong lane on a few islands I survived the trip. I don’t think I have ever been so nervous about anything.

I was only more nervous about telling my Mum and Dad, my plan was just to ride over and surprise them and a couple of Thursdays ago that is just what I did. I battled through the rush hour traffic and pulled up on their drive in full gear. Knocked on the door and Dad opened, looking at me in full leathers deftly removing my helmet. I moved so he cold see the bike and he just laughed an called out “Marg” and the next thing mother is coming down the stairs saying that ‘it looked like Simon on that bike on the drive’. She saw me and for a second my heart stopped until a massively warm and proud smile crept across her face as she embraced me warmly and told me how proud she was of me. It was a great day.

So now I need to engage the flux capacitor.

Stop….pause….While all this was going on the ex had had a little bit of an episode and his head was pretty fucked. I am going to condense a huge amount of time into a short paragraph because I don’t want to dwell on it anymore. He basically was in turmoil and asked if I would consider trying again, to put back together our relationship. I told him, the new fella had to go, he need therapy and then we needed marriage guidance but I made it clear that I was 50/50 on the outcome and I don’t know if this was the right thing to do. So over the next 6 weeks I stopped and paused my life while we talked, spent time with each other and started to like each other again.

In the end it just wasn’t to be, we are 2 very different people from who we were 10 years earlier and we want very different things out of life. We vowed to stay very good friends, after all we still need to live together until I am in a position to be able to afford to move. Something I have been actively looking at for a few days now.

Go…again. So now I have my bike and freedom, I can live wherever I like now and I am not bound my location or trains etc. I am very proud of seeing if we can get together again, there was a lot of pain and we discussed it over and over again and maybe resolved somethings between us. He is still a good mate but he is no longer the man I will spend my life with. It is a tough thing to deal with but is very helpful with the closure and end that I need to start moving on.

And as if by magic this weekend just gone the universe placed someone on my path that made me feel good about myself. I may only have spent one night in a hotel room and I will never see the person again but I felt good, I felt attractive, I felt wanted and needed. I could lie on someone else’s chest and it didn’t feel like I was betraying anyone, I could be intimate with someone else in every way and not feel bad or awkward. It did me the world of good and felt the universe’s hand guiding me to that encounter. Right place and right time.

Now I start dating when the right opportunity arises. I make it all sound plain sailing and it is easy and I am happy. Far from it. I am making the best life I can with what I have. Do I get down, yes. Do I get lonely, painfully. Do I wish it was different, maybe but not as much. Life is scary and moving in to my own place as a single man is going to be really tough but I will do it and I will thrive.

See you all soon.

Si

Destructive behaviour

I am in a bit of a….I don’t want to say bad place….but I am not happy. A lot has happened this last few days in some respects and yet nothing has happened in others and I am left drained, tired and feeling low.

Lets start at the beginning, so a friend had a breakdown in their relationship and I have been trying to help him as they literally have no one else to turn to. Considering it’s only been about 7-8 weeks since my own ended I must seem as someone that knows what they are doing….I don’t, I just doing the best I can. So me being me I have tried to do all I can to help them through it but it has been a struggle and a drain for me and it took a very serious turn for the worse the other night. Long story short we caught it just in time and I spent hours on the phone getting them to a stable place. It has had a cost on me, I’m shattered, not sleeping and restless thinking about my friend and if they are safe.

Now flip it over to me, it’s my long weekend away from work and I have tried to make plans to keep myself busy but I have struggled. I had one plan but it fell through as my friend wasn’t well. So I have spent 3 days so far with nothing to do, wandering around the shops, watching telly and eating. I have been on some of the gay dating apps, not for hook ups to be clear but to try and meet some new friends and find people to hang out with and go on cycles with etc. Some initial conversations have been had but nothing really set in stone. There was a bloke the other day that said he would go cycling and why don’t we met for a coffee and see where it goes. Well, he kept me waiting and waiting despite saying he wouldn’t be long and I, like a lemon just sat there waiting, well I thought I shouldn’t be holding my life up for others and I should just get on with it. In the end I never heard back from him and he never showed up, what’s with that?

So the destructive behaviour starts, I am so scared of being alone and lonely that I will do anything to avoid it, meeting people and end up letting them come over late in the night to have awful sex and feel crap about myself. I am worth more than this and I am just clinging on to the ego boost I am getting from someone that is showing some form of attraction to me.

I wake up in the morning and think to myself shall I take my self out for the day and do something, which fills me with dread as I will be on my own. I try and make a plan with friends but it’s usually too late so end up eating being miserable and look on the apps for some form of contact, friends or something else I know I will regret.

I know this is in contrast to my post of the other day about choices but that still stands and I still stand by it, I am just making bad choices at times and I am sure we all do that. I am still trying to be positive about everything but this, loneliness, it’s something I find so very hard. I want to be busy and keep my self going. Maybe this weekend I just felt drained emotionally and physically due to concern and worry about my friend. Maybe I am giving too much of myself to others and neglecting myself.

Any advice as ever is gratefully received.

Si