You will know I recently lost my partner to cancer; it was mercifully quick but of course that left shock and distress for those left behind.
I have been asked about how we met, so here is the story and I hope it helps any of you who have loved and lost and maybe, like me kissed many frogs!
In 2003, Peter, my then-partner, was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, we got married so I could care for him better and he died in December 2010. He was in care for the last couple of years, so I had been getting used to living alone, but there were occasions when I found it quite difficult. We had been together for 26 years and he was the love of my life.
But Peter had always told me to get on with life and find somebody to love, he understood me very well. So eventually I decided to take steps to meet men, other than through my work, and see where it would take me. I started tentatively with a local free dating online group and took all the right precautions and just met up for a coffee and a chat to get started.
There were a few people who I wrote off almost immediately, some took a second look and over the following year or so I made two friends. None would be my long-term ideal, so I changed the dating site and went a bit upmarket…I had to pay!
My first encounter was with an Indian doctor based in London, we conversed over a week or so but never met. I considered the cultural issues may be a bit much for my family. Why did that worry me?
This all led me to meet a man who had been recently widowed, had lived in France for many years and had a twinkle in his eye…..he called himself Jonny Foreigner. We grieved together but he made me smile, near in age and our past had similarities; we found that we had identical CDs in our cars, we both loved the natural world, and we couldn’t stop talking!
He also lived by the sea, and I was yearning to get back to the coast, mainly for my health, but I love the open vista and during my time with Peter had been sailing, with some trips as far as Holland and France.
It didn’t take long to realise that I was falling in love with this man, and he was with me. We decided to build a life together for whatever time we had left, so we moved to live in our apartment by the sea.
John went on to teach me how to watch birds, we had holidays in Kenya, and in Europe. I taught him about the mind, body and spirit connection, dowsing, mindfulness, meditation and the love that holds us all together.
Our love was special, and I feel blessed to have had another ten years of deep affection and friendship after I thought it had ended.
If you are in that place right now, coping with loneliness and living alone, then think about looking for a partner and yes it takes application, but I can testify to the joy it can bring.
All this effort, putting yourself out there, how do you know that your love will be reciprocated, can you trust another person again, if you find somebody who seems right, can you deal with the stress of meetings and give yourself permission to have fun again…. could you?
Those questions are understandable, but life is short and sometimes we need to take the smallest of risks to keep on living the good life that we deserve.
Taking into consideration all I have learned on the later-life dating scene, and my skills as a relationship coach, I am able to walk with you through the emotional minefield that is finding a new person to share your life with!
It’s not always easy and may have to search for a while, if you want to try this path, contact me and I will support you.
Diane – blessed with love and happy to share (The photo is John and I on holiday in Kenya….so special but oh, I miss him so much)