Hello. Did you wonder where I'd gone, or maybe you didn't even know I'd been missing but that's such a dispiriting thought I've dismissed it from my mind without even really considering it.
The truth is that I've been poorly. Not proper poorly, just ears that couldn't hear and a feeling of being so far underwater that my brain refused to function. Am back in the land of the living now and almost feeling normal so here I am with my thoughts once again.
I was going to post yesterday. I had a lovely morning tramping over, and through, the Lincolnshire Wolds with a friend where we covered numerous topics and agreed on almost all of them which is always satisfying, then I came home, had lunch and was feeling ready to share my world with you again. That feeling lasted right up until Ash and I went out wood collecting. I'd asked him to come and push the full barrow home and he'd agreed so what on earth could go wrong?
We got into the churchyard to find friends adding to a huge pile of recently cut logs and were told we could have what we wanted from the heap. This was brilliant. Not quite so far to push home and they cut some of it into shorter lengths for me which made it easier to pile them into the barrow.
I'll say at this point that they also offered to saw any I wanted and deliver them to the house but then I'd have missed the fun of wielding the chainsaw so I declined that kind offer and took lengths I knew were the right size for me to work with.
We loaded the barrow and, when it was full, I said to Ash 'your turn now', indicating the hill and the handles, and that's when it all went horribly wrong. It went wrong you see because, instead of taking hold of the barrow and beginning to push the heavy load, he laughed at me and told me to do it myself. It wasn't a friendly laugh either, in fact it was the laugh of a stranger who really didn't care whether or not I could manage that barrow on my own.
The thing is that I could, and I did, manage but I got home with tears in my eyes because that wasn't Ash and I know that he'll never be Ash ever again. 'My' Ash wouldn't have waited to be asked and would never, ever, have stood by and watched me struggle but that Ash has well and truly disappeared to be replaced with someone I don't recognise.
It's odd because, most of the time, I accept this life and what's happening to us; I face reality on a daily basis and I can distance myself from everything in a way that helps me deal with it. Sometimes however, just sometimes, I realise all over again that I'm living with a complete stranger and one who really isn't very pleasant.
I'm going to be honest here and I just hope you understand when I say that there are moments when I dislike this man who shares my life more than I would ever have thought possible. I know he can't help it, I know it's not him, but there are times when knowing all of that doesn't help one little bit and yesterday was one of them.
On a positive note however, the wood collecting combined with my morning hike, notched up over 20,000 steps yesterday which made me a very happy bunny and gave me something good to focus on.
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I know that Ash, too, would be horrified at the person he's become and mostly that helps me accept it all but every so often I'm attacked by memories of the person he used to be and then I'm very sad indeed.