An update on my newly found singledom

So, here I am.

I have been officially single for roughly 25 days now and it’s starting to feel like it might all be OK after all.

The brain is a funny thing isn’t it? A few weeks ago, lying on my sister’s spare bed, sobbing into a snotty sleeve, I genuinely couldn’t imagine a time when I would ever feel excited or happy or even vaguely content ever again, about anything, ever. I’m generally a very positive person, and so any sort of intense emotion tends to catch me off guard and I panic – I literally did not know what to do with the sadness.


Me looking positive to prove it

And by panic I do actually mean panic.

It was only a couple of weeks ago that I woke up in a hotel in Manchester, (knowingly, not because of some weird anxiety induced adventure), and could barely catch my breath, let alone imagine how I would be able to give a keynote speech at a conference that morning.* I made myself get out of bed and into the shower, but couldn’t seem to stop the tightness in my chest or the tears escaping. It felt so all encompassing that it was almost impossible to be anything other than totally consumed in the moment, unable to imagine any time other than right then, in my head. Now I appreciate that a lot of people live with far more serious anxiety and depression every single day but for me, who really doesn’t, it was terrifying to feel so out of control of my own emotions.

Managing to get dressed, one item carefully at a time, but unable even to eat breakfast, (usually my best bit in a hotel so a clear sign that something was up), I started to panic about the future – if I couldn’t stop crying to eat some toast how would I ever be able to hold down a job? Would I have to just stay in bed forever? Who would look after Belle?

I was in a bit of a sorry state.

I carried on though, slowly, just thinking about one little thing at a time and lo and behold, no letters of resignation were required. For the last few days I have woken up and felt briefly fed up, but only because it is 6.40am and I would rather be asleep. I have stopped scrutinising my feelings every minute of the day, picking at every negative thought just in case it means something.

In some ways I feel guilty, like I should have felt much worse for much longer, but then who’s to say that I won’t feel bad again? Right now though, things feel OK. I’m not about to start shaving my legs or anything crazy – I shan’t be signing up to any time soon – but things feel OK.

It seems I really am a positive person – apparently I can’t help but bounce back.

*Apologies to anyone at Blog On if I seemed a little distracted or blotchy of face during the day. 


  1. It’s such a strange feeling to be out there on your own. I know our circumstances are different, but I just wanted to say that you’re brilliant and you’re right – you’ll be more than okay and your positivity will always shine through. I think a day’s wasted without at least one smile. There’s got to be something to smile about. And I’m glad you’re feeling okay again. xx
    Charlotte – Write Like No One’s Watching recently posted…New Video: What’s Being a Single Mum Really Like?My Profile

    • Jo Middleton 16 May, 2014 / 9:01 am

      Thank you Charlotte! That comment made me smile so that’s at least one today :-)

    • Jo Middleton 16 May, 2014 / 9:02 am

      I do hear a lot of good stories about it but can’t even think about anyone else at the moment – that would be way too weird! How many bad dates did you have to go on before you met your husband?

  2. Georgie Harrow 14 May, 2014 / 2:29 pm

    So glad you’re feeling better (which you definitely shouldn’t feel guilty about by the way!) Its always odd being single after such a long time in a relationship. I’m sure it will all work out for the best :-) xx

  3. Lianne 14 May, 2014 / 6:53 pm

    Lots of respect for writing this post hun, I posted a blogpost only today about my own anxiety – anxiety in pregnancy in fact.
    Lots of love and luck that things start feeling much better for you soon!
    Fab post – well done!
    Lianne | TheBrunetteSays…

  4. Purplemum
    14 May, 2014 / 8:05 pm

    Well done on getting through the last few weeks. Losing a relationship and all the plans for the future that came with it must be very tough, hopefully your now seeing the new possibilities that are opening in this new route for you.
    Purplemum recently posted…A perfect picnicMy Profile

  5. Fin Williams 14 May, 2014 / 8:42 pm

    Hey Jo,

    I feel an overwhelming urge to tell you everything will be all right, and metaphorically nudge you on the shoulder and suggest you focus your attention elsewhere, but reading your blog reminds me that actually, rather than have anyone pull you out of the slurry, actually having someone wade in and sit alongside you until it no longer makes you feel gut-wrenchingly sick, is a whole lot more powerful. Sometimes we struggle to sit with the rubbish feelings long enough for us to recognise they are just that: feelings. And that you will get through it, and there will be a day you look back and realise that if that door hadn’t closed, the other couldn’t have opened. It’s easy to say from the outside but stick with it *shifts position in the slurry, just to get a but more cozy* x

    • Jo Middleton 16 May, 2014 / 9:06 am

      Than you – it’s a really good point about just sitting with sadness sometimes. As a society I think we are over focussed on ‘being happy’ and then when we aren’t we feel terrible about it and like we have to rush to cheer up as soon as possible. Sometimes you are just sad.

  6. Elaine Livingstone
    15 May, 2014 / 12:32 pm

    glad things are slowly improving. Sometimes it is just the sense of “I have failed” as much as anything else. It seems the most important thing in your life has changed, but then you think you still have a daughter and a job and life goes on. Maybe minute by minute, hour by long slow hour, then day by day, till week by week comes along followed by month by month.
    He was important to you, Im sure Belle misses him too, but you are getting there.
    Remember, you made it once before.
    This about sums it up…..

  7. Sophie Saint 16 May, 2014 / 9:54 am

    Good on you, Jo! You can get through this. I can tell you’re a strong woman – one step at a time, one day at a time, and you’ll get through it :) xx

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