Niall’s virtual diary archives – October 2000

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1st October 2000

Finally a beginning of some decent self-analysis

8th October 2000

More self-analysis

15th October 2000

First entry from Spain

17th October 2000

Re-realisation of Ruth's virtues

19th October 2000

Things are improving

22nd October 2000

Things get very intense, Niall thinks he's going to be a daddy at last

24th October 2000

Hopes dashed

25th October 2000

Pain turns to anger ...

26th October 2000

... Anger turns to finishing it ...

28th October 2000

... But rescued by Ruth

Sunday 1st October 2000: 12.38am. I've just got back from visiting friends in Leeds. It really feels like I'm leaving now in only ten days and people are beginning to behave differently towards me. It's nice - I'm seeing the best of people right now.

I have also been home now for around ten days. For the first few days I was busy packing and getting stuff shipped to Spain, but on Thursday night I found myself idle with nothing really pressing at all to do. And it was then that I realised that I hadn't even begun to think about what has happened in Spain. And it was then I decided to allocate whatever available time I have to getting myself sorted before I must leave in little over a week.

However, those two days and the train journeys to and from Leeds have been very beneficial. I realised whilst in Spain that since Easter I have not adequately tackled the issues which I have noticed since Easter. I have come since to a number of conclusions which feel pretty sound. Originally I thought most likely that my mental difficulties (eg; hearing voices, paranoia) were a result of excessive LSD usage around Easter combined with a lot of circumstantial events. I thought also that events such as that party where I was rejected; the death of the society (rejection); and the rejection of myself by Ruth had led to an irrational fear of being rejected which had led to feelings that friends were plotting against me & whispering about me. However, I now realise that since I did not have these symptoms before Easter, it was something over Easter which was the trigger. I now know that trigger was Ruth and what she said to me - not just her rejecting me because in reality she never ever excluded future romance. I don't think I could have had as clearly realised this previously because other causes could have been to blame but I have since eliminated all of them. Ruth is the only one left.

So now I know the trigger. This does not answer what happened, and why. Here's a stab - maybe the paranoic episodes, which are durations of time lasting a number of hours, are really panic attacks? I realised this this week. Previously I had always run scared and gone to ground when this happened, but this week a unique thing happened - I had a severe attack when solely with friends of many years good standing. I even heard voices. I realised at the time that this was impossible, these were all very good friends of many years. While the attack didn't end right there and then, I was able to ride it out and it was then that I noticed the similarities with the panic attacks I used to have during the Laura years. That got me thinking ...

Panic attacks are caused by repressed feelings of insecurity and confusion. If inside you are totally lost but you maintain the best you can outside, panic attacks may be the way your subconcious asserts the underlying problem onto your concious mind. I hadn't previously realised that these feelings of paranoia might actually be panic attacks, so as a result they were an unknown quantity. If they are, many many other pieces fall into place - I can use my experience and knowledge now, as I'm doing here.

Right, so far so good - something at Easter really opened a can of worms. As I have worked through the sources of the panic attacks, I have realised very painfully how little of my childhood I have really escaped. I now know that by coming to England (leaving home) I was in part attempting to cover up my past and forget about it. As realised recently, that party rejection thing and society ending hit raw nerves left since younger days. But before Easter I could happily repress these and my inner mind was happy with that (you can't after all come to terms with every difficult thing - some you must simply keep out of mind). So what did Ruth do which did worry my inner mind so much?

To answer this, one must cast one's mind back to the entries of the summer of 1999 in Canada (I don't have access to the diary right now - this is being typed onto a floppy disc on a friend's computer). At that time, I realised that a new-found inner peace had come over me and I realised then that it was caused by my visit to Spain the prior Easter. [Hang on, just let me build a "help me think" joint ...] But after Easter it wasn't so much the feeling of insecurity returned, it was something else. I remember saying to Ruth how for some reason I was being reminded at the time of my relationship with Kathryn - even to the extent that I dug out my old diaries of the time and reread them to try and see how. I now know how. Between Easter and now, I have felt a niggling background worry - there is something wrong. Repressing it and trying to say it doesn't exist leads to panic attacks, a la now. So what is the worry?

Well, I know it has something to do with Ruth. In the case of Kathryn, it was that I was in love with a mental image of her (which conveniently left out all the bad bits), and not the girl herself. But what about Ruth? It could be many things, but after much thought it comes down to two main candidates:

  1. Subconciously at Easter I realised that my mental image of Ruth is fundamentally different to that of reality. This raised subconcious alarm bells like when with Kathryn.
  2. Subconciously at Easter I was thrown by the real Ruth doing something that my mental image of her should not. This raised worries that my ability to form an accurate picture of my standing was compromised and hence there was fear of progressing when I did not have an accurate determination of where I was standing.

The latter item is of course the new previously-unencountered one. I am not discounting the validity of the first by any means, but the second needs some explaining. I have mentioned in here before (particularly in Niall's theory of women) how I build mental images of people I know and use them as a template for how I should interact with them. When in a group of people, I gauge the atmosphere and adapt my actions appropriately. Also when observing the actions or reactions of someone, I am predicting and measuring their performance against my mental template of them. We all of course do this subconciously to a large degree, but I often actively perform it too.

Now recently this whole process has been suffering attacks where the perceptional outcome becomes severely tainted. I think the people in a room are plotting against me for example - their words and actions seem malevolent, no matter their literal meaning. It's almost like my brain's perception 'organ' spazzes out on full negative "please activate the fear response" mode. But why is this form of panic attack different from the classical attack as felt during Laura? And why am I having panic attacks now with Ruth when I never did with Kathryn? I always knew something was wrong with Kathryn but I never panic attacked.

Clearly, these are serious questions. I could just say "panic attacks = something wrong GET OUT NOW!" but as I have mentioned in here before, this is very different. I think the girl is fantastic, nothing short of it. I feel like she is the soulmate I have always searched for, almost like it was with Aoife for that short time when I was fourteen. I genuinely think we will always be friends, no matter. I feel all these things about her.

Now given the severity of the panic attacks across all this time, there must be a very BIG problem which my subconcious is trying to reveal. As big as with Laura, much bigger than Kathryn. Ruth must mean serious things to me.

But note other differences. The Laura panic attacks were like every part of my brain spazzing out. These are only the perception bit. With Laura, my refusal to disbelief the lie caused me to deconstruct much of my self-conciousness which affected every part of me. With Ruth it is staying localised - despite the fact all this was happening, the rest of me has reacted well and coped with it, adapting where necessary. So it comes to my mind that the root is within the perception part.

Here's a hypothesis: Is it possible that when Ruth told me that she wanted to be alone at Easter, this was such a deviation from what my perception of her said she should be feeling that my self-confidence in its measurements was shattered? And refusing to trust it led to other doubts and questioning which has been vented through it spazzing out? Bear in mind that Ruth told me many other things then (and indeed did again just recently) which I can't mention here but suffice it to say that in some ways they confirmed what I had always thought privately but she had always previously denied and also vice versa. Needless to say, this introduces a lot of doubt into the quality of my perceptions.

For what I am about to enter into requires the very best of perceptual ability. Not least with a new country, language and people but most especially and importantly is my upcoming relationship with Ruth. I really don't want to fuck it up with her. If my perceptions of her are true, then she could well be my soulmate for at least a while until we grow apart. Or maybe it is that we are already apart, but I refuse to acknowledge and realise it - hence the problems.

These are all matters which will require a lot more thought before I go to Spain. It's 4.40am now, my friend is asleep even though I am still using the computer - bless him, I said I needed to get this down before I forgot it and he let me - it's been very good of him but I must let him get to sleep. I have the basics down at last - I have much more to write, but I will do this later.

Cool, I'm off to do more thinking. I'll be back when I've taken more decisions - I'll end by saying how happy I am to be finally making progress, here's hoping to being ready in time! Best of luck, be happy, see you again soon!

Sunday 8th October 2000: 1.10am. Wow, a whole week gone. And it's been a funny one. Well, I've bought the tickets - it'll be next Thursday, some four days away now. And everything's been sent, paid off or sold. It's done.

I was doing okay for a few days after the last update, but then I stopped making progress and I had two or so bad days which led me to believe that I was not yet internally happy with the new situation. I already had gone as far as possible before leaving with explanation no. 2 (in the last entry) and was kinda hoping that it would be enough (I hadn't any time to fully expand last time, but you get the general point from what I have written). A few nights ago, exasperated with a still-niggling lack of self-confidence and lack of solution, I was lying in bed when I thought I should really take explanation no. 1 as far as possible as well.

And it was an illumination. The list of points grew to be much longer than what I would have imagined. And that got me thinking, and many realisations came to me. And since then, it has been like those first few days after my last entry - a taste of what things used to be like. How long this lasts who knows, but if I keep making progress then I keep getting the "happiness" reward.

I now feel like I know where I stand much more than before. Ever since Easter, I have known that the ground had moved suddenly and in many ways I didn't want to deal with it. My great desire to end my loneliness has often blinded me in the past to obvious truths which threaten my dreams and I think it has happened again with Ruth. I need to stop clinging so strongly to dreams like these which prevent me from acknowledging changing circumstances. But I am very happy that I am now much more subconsciously sensitive to when I am ignoring important truths. It has put my feet on firm ground luckily before I have had enough time to fuck things up.

So am I ready for mi vida nueva? At this particular moment in time, yes, I am. I cannot say though with confidence that it will last, but to start a journey requires taking the first step, and I think I have done everything in my power to be ready before this Thursday. The one thing I knew when I came back from Spain only a few weeks ago is that all the answers lie in Spain. Now that I have a better understanding of where I am, what I want and where I want to go I hope that the next few weeks in Spain will place everything into clarity quickly and painlessly. We shall see.

The next entry will probably be from Spain. Until then, be happy!

Sunday 15th October 2000: 5.26pm (but of course we are on romance time now, so it's GMT+1!). Well, as predicted, here's the next entry from Spain. I can't believe how much has happened this week - I said goodbye to so many friends of many years standing, came to Spain (I finally have my own computer back and it's great!) which was just starting a holiday weekend, so since Thursday it's been pretty much non-stop going out. Today's been the first day with any time available during it. I'll apologise now to all those who have sent me emails, I have read some of them but I also have a 4000+ strong email backlog (mailing lists) and it took an hour to download only a thousand of them today. So in four days I should have all of them, assuming I get time which I doubt. Expect replies when you get them!

And so now I'm in Spain. I'm still mentally strong, although physically the strain has been showing with bad headaches and back pain. In many ways, everything has moved so quickly I haven't had much chance to think - although, this said, I am very much loathe to disturb the mental confidence that I have only just so recently reacquired.

But disturb it I must. Ruth has been thinking during the last three weeks and now has decided that she wants to be with me again (yeah, yeah, I know, but that's women for you). But also typically she wants to be with me in a way different to what it was before (less serious). I have reacted with what I think is a healthy amount of cynicism in that I am not just about to drop all the balls I have painstakingly regathered just cos she's being fickle. Indeed, as I told her last night, I have lost a considerable amount of trust in her, perhaps fatally. I now feel for her much as I do with say someone like Melanie in that they are a close friend which whilst attractive to me, they hold little more than that.

I am not sure that this can change. I know it sounds stupid, but I have spent months now very unhappy and even though it wasn't her fault, Ruth was the cause. I am tasting that confidence again and it's only been a week or so since I retrieved it. I really don't want to rock the boat.

But the issue will get forced, and it will be soon. Once I get somewhere of my own to live in, it will mean we are able to have sex whenever we want. And I unfortunately am now in possession of a non-drug-impaired sex drive which has laid dormant for perhaps nearly two years. It has already come close a number of times, and I expect there would be no stopping us given the privacy.

That said, it is very possible to keep it (on my side at least) as a sex only thing ie; I have sex and not make love. Which means potentially a repeat of when with Elli, in that I wasn't able to let her in emotionally (still recovering from Kathryn). I know that really hurt Elli, and she didn't deserve that, and it's something I would prefer to avoid doing again to Ruth. I'know, now that I actually think about it, there's altogether far more in common with my current situation with Ruth as there was when I met Elli. Not good.

Anyway, these things do not need thinking about quite just yet and I know from past experience that a lot can change between me and Ruth in merely days. I have noticed though that Ruth has been shirking any possibility of in-depth conversation, much as she did when I was in Spain previously. Then it worried me. Now, I honestly don't care and in some ways I am happy about it because it means I can get stuff done which has laid untouched for over a month (eg; v1.1 of Flow - BTW, finally fixed a really stupid bug which had been holding me up for weeks!). I think a lot has changed in my head. maybe this is for the better in the long run.

Ok, off I go - I'm going to get a lot of this archived off to reduce the main page size which must be well over 100Kb by now. See you again soon, until then be happy!

Tuesday 17th October 2000: 11.40pm. Well, as suggested in the last entry, lots has changed since the last entry. After considerable amounts of thought and reflection, I have come to re-realise how Ruth is still one of the most impressive people I have ever met, and it would be a great great mistake to reject an opportunity to enter into a relationship with her. This isn't a complete turn-around as one might think, but it does cast a new light on quite a few things. For one thing, I am not going to allow myself to become overly emotionally attached to her - she still wants a non-serious relationship, and I am not about to enter into anything where our mutual understandings differ (ie; straight back to where I was just over a month ago). I also still don't trust her, I don't trust her not to hurt me again - because at the moment, she would far rather hurt me than open herself up to me. I really hope that it is because she doesn't trust me enough yet rather than some other ulterior motive (which she claims), but ultimately with this status quo it doesn't matter too much. This situation can continue indefinitely, although I hope that in time she will learn to trust me and open herself to me.

Putting this into place has led to a number of sleepless nights. I am constantly tormented by visions of her hurting me, playing with me and backing out just when I begin to love her again. By opening myself to her, I place myself in her hands which last time led me to being really hurt by her. Deciding the above means putting myself back much more into her hands - now I am expressing an open interest as opposed to complete refusal.

The big question of course here is how long am I going to wait for her. For her to begin to trust me, the ideal answer is forever, but this being the time of focusing on relationships it means that isn't in my best interests. I know that for at least the next few months my Spanish will not be up to chatting women up so that places a natural space of time on the proceedings. But there will come a time when opportunity arises, and a decision has to be made. I guess I'll decide closer to that time.

So life goes on. Apart from not getting any sleep right now and having great difficulty in finding a flat to rent, things are okay. I still have my mental strength, despite these changes which was my greatest worry of losing by thinking about these issues. And I've already started looking into clubs and such so I can go out for a dance and meet lots of new people (although I think I need to improve my spanish a little first). So far, so good - it's gone much better than when I first moved to England and I have Ruth's parents and Ruth herself to thank almost entirely for that. I also would like to go to this year's Cannabis Cup in the Dam which I think is around three weeks away now (circa 11th November?). So there's plenty to do. I will say however that it is a bit lonely, and I am missing my friends (hi everyone!). Actually, it's very lonely indeed especially as Ruth doesn't get home until around 11pm and then has to be in bed by 12-1am and is totally knackered from fourteen plus hours of work and school. But loneliness is to be expected when moving home so radically, and I knew it would be the case before I moved. Actually, now I've just written that I am feeling a little homesick :(

Anyway, back to Flow v1.1, it keeps me sane! Until next entry, be happy and hope to see you again soon!

Thursday 19th October 2000: 1.14am. Wow, these last two days have been much better. Relations between me and Ruth have softened considerably, and we've spent a whole three or so hours talking in the last two days. Not necessarily about deep shit, but about the kinda stuff we used to talk about - general stuff. It's been good, and it's really nice to finally have the frostiness gone. It's how it should be right now, we're good friends. We've even been talking about some of the men she's interested in. Does that bother me? Never has done to be honest, oddly with her I've never been jealous despite being insanely jealous in previous relationships. Honest - she has slept with quite a few men whilst I've been in England, and it's never bothered me. Even if she slept with them here and now, I'm fairly sure it wouldn't bother me too much either. I've mentioned this before in this diary I think.

Now that we're back to being friendly again, it means it's much harder for me to keep up the defenses. I keep having to check myself from doing things and, especially, thinking things which would have been appropriate before but not now. I know I've undergone massive changes of thinking in relation to her in only weeks - and it has been only weeks - so my brain is probably still playing catch up (I really hope it is anyway!). But I know consciously that I am doing the right thing by repressing these emotions - by doing this I keep us feeling roughly the same about each other. Also, as I know only too well, she may well reject any form of relationship with me other than friendship and I must take every measure to protect myself against hurt from that. However, now we're getting on so well again, and especially as she's finally opened herself up at least partially to me, it's very easy to fall back into that trap of trusting her again. I must remember she will happily hurt me if I let her.

I'm also beginning to have difficulty in seeing her faults again. This is a real pernicious problem of mine, I feel guilty thinking bad things about people I hold in high esteem. I need to learn to be more objective with Ruth. She has many faults which are of great danger to me and I need to learn to be far more rational when I think about her. It's hard though when she's being so nice. Reminds me of that ol' magic :(

I think getting out of her house will help a lot. Being here with little to do and no one to talk to places her in an artificially higher position in that I look forward greatly to her coming home and feel really annoyed when she goes to bed - and this isn't helping things. Y'see, I ain't lonely when she's around, I have someone I can converse easily with (and it's really good conversation right now). News is good on this front, a friend of a friend of Ruth's knows of a flat which was trashed by its former occupants and its landlady wasn't going to rent it out again. But me being a friend of a friend of a friend and being fairly responsible (and I will have a professional job) means she will probably relent - and of course, I'm the only applicant so I won't get beaten to it (yet again). If all goes to plan (I visit it tomorrow night), I could be housed by the middle of next week. Which is important, because the really cheap introductory offer for ADSL expires at the end of this month. I need a flat before then or otherwise I fork out a fortune.

My selected company have asked me for my CV again and a covering letter plus references. If things go right here, I should be employed not far into November. Money's good, I've had virtually no outgoings since I came here plus my father has kindly provided enough money to cover flat deposit plus a month's rent ie; I should be fine until first pay packet. It's a major stress off my mind. Things have really picked up in the last two days, let's hope I don't fuck it all up for a bit (I can say with certainty that things will get much more complicated within three weeks. Feel free to place bets on this because you will get your money back. I already have a thousand pesetas on it ... ).

Ho hum. I think that's about it. I've been further improving my self-maintenance over regularly cleaning myself and shaving by doing press-ups, lifting weights and sit-ups plus lots of walking for a hour or so as fast as I can without looking too stupid (I don't have any jogging stuff here of course). I'm definitely improving in tone and health which had slipped a bit during those three weeks of fun in the UK, but it's definitely being aided by eating two square nutritious meals a day courtesy of Ruth's mother. Been a very long time since I regularly had home-cooked meals - I think only Melanie's occasional meal was all I got during uni time. I hope she's doing okay.

Oh, coding v1.1 of Flow is finished, now it enters the testing phase. Seeing as I've piss all to do tomorrow, I think I'll spend it testing the thing. There's quite a lot new code, and certainly lots of new features (many of which were really already in v1.0 but disabled). What's surprised me is how many bugs I've found in v1.0, despite a lot of testing. A lot of it is Windows being odd (esp. Win9x or DirectX being shite), but I've found silly things which have never surfaced like the old reliable "use a pointer before it's initialised". I don't program like that (always test its validity before use), so I always kick myself when I find code like that, even if there's never been a problem. Better robust than bleedingly quick, especially with Windows where at least 95% of Flow's execution time is spent in Windows code. Actually, I should really do a profile just to see for sure.

Okay, it's 2.22am, I'm off to ask people to send references plus upload this plus find out what the hell RTOS I used when I was in Canada. Important for CV's n' stuff. Cool, see you lot later and until then, be happy!

Sunday 22nd October 2000: 12.52am. Something really mad happened about half an hour ago: Ruth said that if I ever died without children, she would use my sperm to have a baby. In fact, she promised me. Just to make sure it wasn't a flippant statement, I questioned her as to the details of how she had arrived at this and well, I'm convinced she means it.

As some of you may already know, I feel that having children is one of the main reasons of existence (mainly as I'm an existentialist atheist and as one I get one go at getting things right). I also feel a great impatience about getting into a relationship, not least because I'm not very good at them and need practice if I am to provide a decent home for them. It's why I have come to Spain, this is the time to find a wife. You may think, well he's twenty-two, surely there is plenty of time? But I ask, is there? Half of all marriages end in divorce, and we know what that does to the children in most cases. Many of the remainder are unhappy homes, which also doesn't do much for the children. If people stopped being so selfish and putting themselves before their children, we may well have a far better world. Am I being a little over the top? I don't think so, much of adult behaviour relates to their childhood - it is something my father is a great expert in - and I feel we as western cultures greatly undervalue its importance.

Now by no means am I saying I'm going to have children tomorrow. I myself now am ready (or as much as I can ever be) after many years of preparation, but I am only too well aware of the importance of the other half of the arrangement. In many ways, whatever I do can only ever be half of the influence. I need a suitable partner.

And hence coming to Spain to find just such a partner. I expect it to take years, but it's something best started now rather than waiting - one can only get better with practice. For the last four years my stated focus was to meet people and improve myself. I've done this, I feel very very solid indeed (hence my feelings of readiness for raising children) in all but one thing - relationships with women. I have known since my mid-teens that this was a major issue, and I knew I wanted to go out and meet lots of people whilst at uni (hence my leaving Trinity in favour of Hull). I have to admit I didn't quite realise then how quickly the desire to have children would arrive, but it's been there for a long time - I always thought I wasn't ready. Now I feel I am. I guess that explains it.

Anyway, for a long time, I dreamed of children with Ruth, ignoring her repeated statements that she didn't want any ever. Then last Easter she told me she too had been dreaming of children with me. Tonight she told me that in fact this had been the case since a year prior to that again, that first Easter I came to Spain in 1999 which had such a profound effect upon me. And she promised me that if I ever died, she would have my child, even though she doesn't want them. She would do this because she knows it is that important to me.

Of course, as I was quick to realise (but I didn't mention), it isn't possible legally without at least my written consent, and if I'm dead then that kinda doesn't work. Indeed, I'm fairly sure it will require quite a lot of legal work while I'm still alive to allow it - never mind the additional constraints of Spanish law, whatever they may be. So it's probably a null promise - but I'm absolutely sure she means it when she says it.

I wasn't quite meaning to write as much as that - I guess that's the result of how it has affected me. I have never met anyone ever who was willing to have my child posthumously, with all the difficulties entailed (and she does realise the difficulties - I asked in detail). It has left me in a state of chuffedness which I could never put into words. As I have said before and will no doubt say again, she really is some girl - even if we are only just friends. She really blows me away. To take on a responsibility like this because of its importance to me, despite not wanting any herself ... well, I hope the word "wow" expresses what I feel about this. And without a doubt she has my unending gratitude. Thank you Ruth!

I think I have run out of words to say. Just thinking about it makes me wordless. No words can describe it. Hell, I'll stop wittering now and wasting your bandwidth, never mind boring you. In fact, I'll piss off to bed ... god, I'm such a sentimental old fool sometimes. Just look at yourself Niall, the girl presses the right button and Niall's now a splodgy mess. Just goes to show the kind of hold she has over you eh, look at the power she has? Hell, I know really that I need her. In the end, it's all a question of whether she needs me too ...

Okay, I'm off to bed. Tomorrow I think we visit more flats (just to be sure the one mentioned in the last entry is as good as we're getting) and if good (or rather not good) then we take aforementioned flat. Which will be my first permanent home for four years and four months. Now that really is a thought ... be happy!

Earlier today ... 2.51pm. We thinks we has a flat! Yeah, it was the one I spoke about last entry - the seeing of which was made much more complicated by me not understanding directions and everything got thrown back by nearly an hour - then we had the wrong address and wrong contact phone number! Just so you can all see where I'll be roughly, here's a map:

Anyway, just got back from there for the third time, this time making a list of things wrong with it so they can be fixed before I move in. It may take a while for some of it, so it looks like maybe a week yet to go. And then I get maybe another week before I'd start work. Then three weeks before Cannabis Cup 2000, which I must book soon actually. Hotel Hortus again I think, it was good there, assuming they have any rooms left at this late stage.

What else has been happening? Not a lot since the last entry, just more of the same. I keep having trouble keeping control, it's like I keep starting to fall in love with the girl and then have to check myself and pull myself out emotionally. Which makes me angry with myself for not having more self-control. I told her lots and lots of stuff last night, mainly cos I don't have anyone else to talk to, and suffered yet more nightmares last night, because the closer I get to her the worse the nightmares of her hurting me become. It's like when stuff builds up in my head and I have nowhere else to turn other than her, but by talking to her about issues relating to her it just makes the issues worse. Talk about a rock and a hard place :(

I also keep on over-emphasising her faults artificially to try and keep a certain amount of objectivity and besides, as I have mentioned before, she may well yet not choose me and I have to protect myself by not allowing myself to fall in love with her again. This in itself is not a bad thing in that it does the job, but I keep on saying things which reflect this kind of thinking and this is very very bad because some of things I think could be very hurtful. I need to keep this form of thinking internalised and not keep dumping it out. I know of course really it's artificial, but it's very hard to not go all the way emotionally when I know that she still wants me. If she would only take some bloody decisions one way or another then I could stop sitting on the fence. I tend to be a person who dislikes prevarication (unless I don't have enough information to make a certain decision), so I'm not very used to waiting around while someone makes up their mind. Again, when I'm in my own place all of this won't be anything like as important, but it's going to be a while yet so there's no escaping really.

Anyway, no matter, life must plod on and one thing I can say is that the girl handles my emotional swings very well. I have said some really nasty things to her as part of talking about the swirlings of my head over the last week and a bit but she has never held it against me. As she says, she's a friend first. She's a good girl is she.

Okay, must go to take a dump, it's like I haven't for two days now and have been in quite a lot of pain for this last twenty-four hours - maybe it's a certain kind of food? See you all soon, until then be happy!

Tuesday 24th October 2000: 3.39pm. I feel really gutted today. It's my own fault. I went on such a high yesterday from the news, I was finally going to be a daddy one way or another. At last. So I ignored common sense and drew up a will which would make it all legal, and somehow expected Ruth just to say "oh cool, now it's legal, that's done then". God I'm so stupid. How could I expect the girl to react favourably? Blatantly she didn't mean it literally, or if she did she certainly wouldn't have expected things to move so quickly.

Anyway, she had had a bad day yesterday, wanted to talk about it and instead I thrust a piece of paper in front of her and she totally span out. Who could blame her? I feel really guilty now, I was so selfish - I did what made me happy and didn't give a jot about her or how she'd react.

But this diary isn't about her, it's about me, so enough about her. I started crying this morning in the shower, only for a few seconds before I checked myself. I felt like I'd just lost something really precious - something so dear that one doesn't feel anger upon losing it, just numbness and loss. I suppose it's obvious - I was going to be a daddy yesterday, and today I'm not again. I've been numb all day. And as I type this I feel the tears well up again. I guess this touches a raw nerve.

Will this emotional roller coaster ride ever end? I'm coming close to wondering if it's worth it. One minute I'm so happy I could explode, next minute the world is falling apart again. I still have my mental strength, my confidence, but this is pushing every faculty I have to the limit. I remember breaking down in front of Ruth on saturday night and saying I wondered how much further I could go before I broke. Last night she said exactly the same to me - she feels so lost. Here am I with a wealth of experience and self-insight, but this is really really pushing me as far as I've ever gone before. And in such a short time! Previously I have maybe had a week of intensity, but this is a week and a half now. It'll be at least another week before I can move out. Wooosh ...

We need to take a break from each other, and we need to do it badly. And yeah, thanks to all those who have sent emails suggesting the same, yes I know and she knows too - but we have no choice, we are limited by circumstance. We get maybe half an hour together every night and the whole day to think about that half hour, and it sure can make that half hour intense.

Anyway, Ruth told me on the telephone today she wants to talk to me tonight, so I guess the roller coaster is about to go a bit faster again. Whether it goes up or down, who knows? I'll know in about eight or nine hours.

One thing's for sure, when I said that Spain would test me to the limit, I sure did hit that bull's eye accurately. And I can tell you now that this is only the start. Guess that'll make for interesting diary entries eh - good for all you lot!

One last thing: I can't give details, because it has to be kept secret, but I'd like to say thank you to a certain someone who very graciously helped me out today. The kindness of Spanish people is above and beyond what I expect every time. This person barely knows me, but has trusted me and helped me regarding getting my flat set up, and I will certainly remember the kindness later. Cool, I'm off to speak at an english school, they want to listen to my accent :) - until soon, be happy!

Wednesday 25th October 2000: 7.24pm. I'm still reeling a bit from yesterday. Last night she told me that no, I had it wrong, she was merely tired and hadn't meant to give any wrong impressions - she hadn't changed her mind. Not that she apologised or anything, no, she just set the record straight and went to bed.

Now I'm angry. I'm really really angry. I've been trying to reign myself in today, because at the factual level she has done nothing wrong - she was really knackered, she went to bed Monday night. Indeed, it's my fault mostly, because I read things into it which weren't there. So really, you see, yesterday was totally self-inflicted.

Why don't I believe myself? I am angry at myself for having run away with mad notions in my head, and it was indeed me who led myself up the garden path. But there's something else, and it's been niggling me at the back of my mind. I think I can put it into words now: she put her own interests in front of mine again. When things became too much for her (after reading the will), she protected herself by running off and didn't think about how my interpretations of her actions would affect me.

And concerning children, this is one of the most deeply emotive areas I have. I broke down in tears yesterday morning for god's sake, I haven't done that in a very very very long time. I never do that. Yesterday was one of the most painful days I have had the misfortune of experiencing probably in the last year at least, if not longer. She really really hurt me yesterday. And the thing is, she didn't do it deliberately, she didn't even know she had hurt me until last night when I told her.

But that's exactly my point. She didn't think once about how her actions would affect me. She didn't have one bloody clue. What kind of person am I supposed to be entering into a relationship with? One whom doesn't think ahead, doesn't think of me? Christ, even friends think about how their actions affect one another, but she didn't.

And it is for this reason that I am so angry. I'm angry with myself for having laid myself yet again so bare to her so she could trample all over me. Last Easter, when she told me she wanted to be alone, she didn't give any forethought to how this decision would affect me - it led me into three months of misery, voices in my head and plenty more besides. As with two nights ago, she didn't think ahead. She didn't think of the consequences of her actions.

I don't want to be with someone who doesn't think ahead. I really really don't want to be with someone who doesn't think about how her actions will affect me. You could argue that I'm blowing this out of proportion, but this isn't the first time she's done this. She's done it before, and again, and again, and again. And every time she keeps hurting me more and more and more.

So what am I going to do? I had started trusting her again, but this has shattered it once more. This girl keeps causing me pain without knowing she has caused it. How does someone deal with a person who gives them so much happiness and so much pain? I wouldn't mind if she caused the pain deliberately, because then the answer would be easy - get her out of your life. But she isn't doing it deliberately. So what do I do?

Well, logically, it would seem that I have a responsibility to try and make her aware of this, and hope she changes and improves herself. If she doesn't, then I must make the break for my own well-being. I can not and will not subject myself to continuing mental torture like this.

Anyway, I'm off to try and get her printer working, she fucked up my CV and stuff when printing at work and so I need to do it again. Except it doesn't have any ink, and my attempt to refill it doesn't seem to have worked. Arse. Cool, see you all later, until then be happy!

Thursday 26th October 2000: 3.28pm. I did as I said I would do last night, but it went further than I wanted. Fair enough, she could see how what had happened had. What do we do to fix things? was next. I pointed out that more effort needs to be put in. Relationships with the opposite sex are one of the hardest things I have ever tried to master, and I still haven't done it yet. It requires work, lots of work, and I felt she wasn't putting it in. For one thing, I always told her when she hurt me, but she has never once told me when I've hurt her - and how can I know if I have and hence prevent it happening again if I don't know? Also, she's had problems at work, again how can I help or even know if she never tells me? I know she doesn't want to let me in, but this feels so one-sided - I'm doing all the work - and I ain't getting zip in return.

Now I would stay with it if I thought there was likelihood of things improving in the future. But there isn't you see - whilst I know that we have something which so few others ever even know about, she doesn't really know how truly lucky she is. She doesn't know how few people even realise what we have is possible - she doesn't know how special we are, how unique this is. And it is because of that that she won't ever commit until she does. She won't put her full 100% into this until she knows just how hard it is to find this. And until she puts all her efforts in, she will continue to hurt me with no likelihood of things improving.

It's for this reason - that she'll keep hurting me - that the casual relationship I had previously agreed to is no longer possible. Which is why I ended it last night - I said no more - if you aren't in this 100%, I am not going to stand around while you hurt me, even if it's unintentional. It'll keep happening, because you aren't trying hard enough to make it not happen in the future.

I was hoping when I woke up this morning that I'd come to my senses and change my mind, but it hasn't happened yet. I am totally sure this is the right thing to do, and the more I look at it the more it seems that way. She's not ready for a relationship with me, and maybe she never will be. Moreover, I'm totally prepared to help her become ready, but she in the end doesn't want to - she lets fear rule over her, and this combined with a lack of will to change things ie; she doesn't want to be with me enough, means that that won't change. If I'm going to be selfish, like she's being, then this is best.

Damn, I feel so sad now. I really want her, I think she's fantastic - she has so much potential. But that's exactly it - it's potential - not realised yet, and she fears realising it - and until she changes her mind we cannot be together because I won't allow it. I am fairly sure though that she will, as always, choose the safe road - stay lonely, stay unrealised, stay unchanged. Fear is a terrible thing when it takes over your life.

Well, it's been some week. I expect no changes tonight from the current situation unfortunately. I guess it's about time I started looking elsewhere :(. Damn it, why can't I just be happy for once? Why do I always have to keep missing the boat?

Fuck it, I'm off. See you all later. And try to be happy.

Saturday 28th October 2000: 4.13pm. The last two days have flown away, mainly as my apartment's details were being finalised. I got the keys yesterday, and can move in today although I'm not going to quite just yet as we have some modifications we'd like to make - decor and stuff. Well, I'm not arsed, I'll live anywhere, but Ruth wants new colour schemes etc. and it'll make her happy if she can muck around with interior design and etc. - that said, it's going to be my home for the next three years at least, so I'd like it to look nice - but why bother working out interior design for myself when I have have someone else do it and I get veto power? ;)

As for me and her, yet again things have changed. Thursday night we spoke for hours, and she did tell me a lot which I had hoped for but she hadn't shown any evidence for. She wasn't going to back down, and neither was I (she wouldn't see things my way, despite providing no evidence that she's right and I'm wrong - she's stubborn she is), so when it finally came to a head she suggested we place these issues on the table for now. I want to give us every possible opportunity for success, so I agreed.

And since then it's been wonderful. One of my main complaints was that I felt she wasn't putting enough effort into our relationship, that if she put half as much effort into us as she does her job then we'd be flying. I'm not asking even for that, just that she reminds me from time to time that I am special to her and she puts in a conscious effort to rectify mistakes and try to improve things between us - and that I see she does this. If she's trying, I'm happy even if progress is slow - and I totally understand she needs time to adjust to the new circumstances. So long as I see movement towards somewhere, I can wait.

Anyway, yesterday she really surprised me because (it seemed to me at least) she really went out of her way to make me feel I was special to her. Not in big things at all, little things - she would pop over and ask if I was okay, or sometimes she would give my hand a squeeze, or ... well, it's hard to describe exactly, but I felt I was really special to her yesterday. And today I gave her a back-massage, and we whispered to each other, and again I felt really special. I know she wouldn't give in Thursday night, but it really seems like she listened anyway.

I too listened. She said she was afraid of me sometimes because every time she came home from work she didn't know what to expect - would I be angry, sad, lonely or what? And she had never seen me when I was properly angry before (we still have spent only around nine weeks together in four and a bit years), and it really put the fear of god into her. How can she be open to me or trust me or even be comfortable around me when she feared me? Good point methinks, and I've done my best in these last two days to help her feel comfortable around me.

A lot will change this week - I finally get my own pad - which means at last I can smoke when I want to again - and this will make a huge difference to interactions with her. And I'll at last be mostly independent which will prevent a lot of the feelings of being imprisoned I've had whilst here - which will remove a lot of the anger. I'm looking forward to all this a lot - it should be great!

Anyway, mass email will go out as soon as my web server starts doing email again - it's been broken recently. I'll pass along my address and etc. with it then. Cool, cheers for reading, things are looking up, until next time be happy!

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