Empowered. That’s me right now. I’m surprised with how clear and empowered I’m currently feeling. I don’t think I’ve actually felt like this before and am wondering why I didn’t do this sooner.

I’ve been feeling at peace since the end of February and having my time on the beach. I still want children and it is taking a lot of self control to not steal every child or baby I see – seriously, the kids here are so freaking cute – but I’m no longer sad or in pain.

Gary has reached out to me a few times and we’ve had some nice enough messages going back and forth, he had said he was sad around 23 February, but I’m not sure if that was genuine or not. I really can’t believe anything he says anymore. I told a few people my ‘sob story’ during my tour. My roomie was the first to find out and she really questioned why I was still in contact with him – she kept asking if I’d unfriended him yet. I was able to finally send her a message this morning and tell her that I’d blocked him and unfriended him. I feel so much better for it.

I’ve been in Hanoi for about two weeks now and have been enjoying some down time, aimlessly wandering and making new friends. Just enjoying the thrill of being away but not being tied down to anything, or being pressured into rushing into something.

Well, a few days ago, Gary once again asked me if I still loved him. I didn’t respond – why should I? Then I went out and had a few drinks, so jokingly sent him the same question. And I’m not sure exactly what happened, but things turned. He was an absolute arsehole. I’m trying to forget everything that he said, but it really came from out of nowhere.

He claimed that he was in pain, and I was insulting him by telling him that he needed to speak with someone about his time in the army and his anxiety. He claimed we was speaking with someone – he was speaking with me. I refuted this, as when I had tried to call him to physically speak, he wouldn’t answer or wouldn’t elaborate and would completely bypass the issue.

Then suddenly, he told me that I was effectively too fat, that I didn’t dress well or care about myself enough. That I didn’t have any pride in myself and it was a turn off. He was scared that if we got married I’d gain five stone and therefore be even fatter. He then proceeded to give me ‘advice’ about looking after myself so that I would be desirable to others in the future, that I’d one day look in the mirror and thank him for giving me this advice.

He told me that I needed to be a princess, that I needed to improve my clothes and do my hair and nails and wear more make up. He then proceeded to insult my sister and think that it was all okay – he was doing this to help me. Apparently when I was trying to lose weight last year, I was doing it wrong. I shouldn’t have been listening to my doctor, nutritionist or exercise physiologist, but rather should have been going to the gym four days a week for an hour each session. I should have listened to him – an uneducated male.

I did point out that we did go to the gym a few times and enjoyed it, however we stopped going together and he in fact stopped going himself. I didn’t point out that at the time we were doing this, I was unknowingly pregnant so anything in regards to my weight would have been difficult to control. I also didn’t point out that I then dropped 10 kilos without even trying.

There was a lot more in relation to that, but it turns out it was quite an issue for him as he had to ‘stick his dick inside me’ and our sex life suffered. Curiously, when I had tried to discuss our sex life, not much was said and he certainly never told me that he found me unattractive or didn’t like sticking his dick inside me. Obviously it wasn’t that much of an issue as he did manage to get me pregnant.

What I am surprised further by is that he was quite nasty, but seemed to genuinely think he was doing me a favour. Had this happened a few months ago, I’d likely be a mess. He chose my biggest insecurity and attacked it, truly attacked it unprovoked. It was also early in the morning for him in his time, so I can’t even blame this on him having a few drinks, like when he’s asked me if I loved him. This all came from nowhere.

I was determined not to get upset and I tried so hard not to stoop and bite back and attack him, but when he insulted my sister, I couldn’t hold back. I went back at him and said he wasn’t top shit, not the best looking and his fashion of tracksuit pants was not suitable for everyday wear. He needed to work on his appearance as well. I did hold myself back from commenting on the sex – from our time together, he did only satisfy me about three times. Sex was all about and for him – shame he had to do it with a fat unfashionable non-princess. Anyway, he simply responded that I raised valid points. He didn’t bite.

Eventually he turns it into a joke and brings up getting married – that he thinks we should go to Vegas and get married. Seriously? After insulting me and my family, he thinks I’d marry him? I told him if he wanted a princess, he’d need to treat a girl like one and make her feel as though he’d stop the earth for her. I said he needed to be happy within himself before he could ever consider making someone else happy.

This did ruin my evening, and I spent the night in the hostel moping around a bit and shed a few tears on my bed. But it wasn’t the insults – I know I’m attractive and what I wear suits me and I look good. I’m comfortable in my own skin – it’s taken me time, but I am who I am and look how I look. But the nastiness – the idea that I was actually in love with someone capable of that and had committed myself to spending my life with him – that made me angry, it upset me immensely. I was and still am deeply confused by this. Where the hell did it all come from?

He then took it further by sending me a couple of my past Facebook profile pictures. One was taken in Kuala Lumpur about eight years ago – he told me that he loved that Laura. I told him he’d never met that Laura, and unsurprisingly in eight years I have aged (also curiously, I was incredibly unfashionable at that time, hadn’t done my hair and wasn’t wearing an ounce of make up). Another picture was of me at my cousin’s wedding, so of course dressed up. I told him that no girl was going to dress up for a wedding every day of her life.

He had said that he was over me and had moved on, had dated a couple of girls and puts them on a test. He gets them a few drinks, and if they flirt with other guys, they aren’t for him. I have no idea where he gets all this from – why test a girl on a first date? Why test her at all? How the hell did I get involved with this?

I did tell him that I would look back and thank him. That I would be thankful that I didn’t marry him, didn’t commit to spending the rest of my life with him and am extremely thankful that he won’t be the father of my children. He simply responded that he’d make a good husband and father one day. I asked him to prove it – and he simply said he would to the right girl – clearly forgetting we were engaged last year. I mean come on, what an absolute dick. How did I fall for this guy???

Then yesterday morning I wake up to another message from him: ‘Good Night Laura x’.

What. The Hell.

He then messages later on to say that we need to move on, he can’t go on like this it’s not healthy. I then remind him he told me had moved on and he had also said he found it easy to let go. I said I had moved on and that I was confused by his contradictions and I wished him well.

I then get a further message saying that he can only get married in Vegas. I chose not to bite and am proud of myself for not. Instead, 24 hours later I decide that my time is better spent than trying to help or understand him. He is not worthy of any more of my time and has already taken up far too much of it. So at breakfast this morning, I blocked him on messenger and unfriended him on Facebook. I feel so much better. No longer will I wait or get anxious about a message coming through from him. I am clear of him. He cannot contact me.

I was chatting to a new friend the other day, after the insulting messages and I said I didn’t know why I was still in contact with him, why I felt that need. What troubled me was that he could turn so nasty. It simply comes down to guys wanting to play games to make themselves feel better. I truly believe that for Gary. He is a lost soul and can only make himself better by blaming his bad choices and circumstances on someone else. He refuses to accept or take any responsibility for what he does to himself and others. And I no longer need to deal with that.

A while ago Fiona mentioned to me that it was an ego thing, me wanting to stay in touch. I didn’t think much about it, but now, yes I see it. It felt nice to think that I was needed and he was reaching out to me. It was nice to know that he hadn’t moved on and was watching my moves. But remove the ego, and I have no responsibility for him. I have no obligation to help him. He needs to help himself. I do not. I have to help myself and only myself. He can go get fucked for all I care now. If he is happy and proud of his actions, then good for him. That is purely a reflection on him and nothing on me. I am better than that and I have so many better things to be doing with my time and much more worthy people to spend my time on and with.

I am travelling at the moment and I am looking after myself. I am making new friends and seeing and experiencing so much more than I could have hoped for. I am a good person and dicks that won’t help themselves will no longer hold me back.

I am an empowered woman and I am strong. I am woman, hear me roar.


Overwhelmed at making me

Overwhelmed. That’s my emotional state at the moment. I have a million questions running through my mind and it seems there are very few answers.

I’ve provided notice at work; I’ve got a moving truck booked and a storage unit confirmed; I’ve arranged for my electricity to be cut off and I’ve made the public announcement that I’m off travelling. My car and contents insurance have changed and internet is cut off. My apartment is about half packed and I’ve got lots of stuff ready to be given to charity. Yet I feel as though I’ve achieved nothing.

The majority of people have been supportive and encouraging of my travelling; only a few haven’t been. I’m trying hard to focus on the positivity and encouragement, but there is still the little – though quite loud – voice inside my head that wants to focus on the naysayers, the doubters, and the ones who question what I’m doing.

Dad asked me last week if I was doing the right thing; I said I simply didn’t know. Lili from work said she didn’t think she could do it, and asked why I was. I said I need to get away, I’ve had a rough year and I need a change. She asked if I was travelling to find love – by travelling I’m just making the geographic space larger and therefore making it harder to find. I’m not travelling to find love.

Why am I travelling? I’ve just had a call with Gary and these questions came up. He still thinks I should get my British passport so I can go to Europe, work and travel so as to not spend my money and come home with funds available. He then asked why I’d given notice at work, especially since I don’t have anything booked yet, don’t have set plans or know what I want to do.

I told him that I can’t be here in February. He asked why and I said that was/is the due date. It took him a few seconds, but he cottoned on that the timeline is due to the miscarriage. Our call got disconnected shortly after and he’s just messaged me to say that I need to be around family at a difficult time and that if I’m travelling because of the miscarriage then I’m travelling for the wrong reasons.

This has all crossed my mind and is of course adding to me being overwhelmed. Why am I travelling? Will this help me in any way? What am I hoping to achieve? Am I travelling for the right reasons?

I’ve just responded and told him that the timeline for February is because of the miscarriage, but that isn’t the reason for me travelling. I don’t feel I have the support I need from my family to get me through this, no one understands how this has and is affecting me. Mum told me a while ago to just stop thinking about the timeline, simply forget about it. Dad just wants to hurt Gary for hurting me, Donna and I don’t have that sort of relationship, and when we saw each other for Christmas, she gave me a hug – for her, not for me. I said I couldn’t do it, and she said she needed to do it. Emma has been great; she’s said the right things, let me go on and listened, hasn’t dismissed what I’m feeling or judged me for it. But she’s going through her own stuff and needs to deal with that.

I finished off telling Gary that I am sad, lonely and depressed. I can’t keep doing the same thing and expect a different result. During our call I told him that I wasn’t me right now, I hated who I am currently and I hate feeling depressed, crying at the drop of a hat and simply not being ‘me’.

I’ve never been one to ask for help. I do things on my own and don’t want to be a burden on anyone. I guess I feel like I have to prove to myself that I can do things alone, that I don’t need anyone else. But deep down, I don’t want to be alone; I don’t want to have to do things by myself. I want someone to share my life with, someone to do things with and someone who will be there to help – without me having to ask them.

When saying bye to my Aunty Elaine at our family Christmas party, I told her I was off travelling this year. She said that she thought this year was for making a baby. I responded that this year was for making me. I’ve clung to that since, waiting for the words to come so I can write about ‘making me’. When I retold this to Megan and Alison, Megan immediately started a cheers and we chinked our sangrias. That was the impact I was hoping for from a simple ‘making me’. It’s fallen short since.

There are times when I feel a big twinge of excitement at travelling, the thought of seeing and experiencing somewhere new. There is so much to see of this world and I’ve seen so little of it lately. I need to hold on to these moments, make them last and remember them. I can do this; I will do this.

The next few weeks won’t be easy, but it will get easier. I will tick off a few items on my to do list and I’ll know that I’ve achieved something. Things will happen. I may still cry at the drop of a hat, and you know what, that’s fine. It means I’m alive and feeling.

If making me involves getting overwhelmed at times, then so be it. I’ll get overwhelmed. I’ll feel nervous and scared. But that will pass and with each achievement, I’ll feel accomplished, happy and excited. That’s how I’ll make me. I’ll turn my overwhelming negativity and uncertainty into overwhelming positivity and opportunity.

In 2017, I will make me.