I was half awake at 6.45am this morning, enjoying the thought of another twenty minutes of snooze time before having to get up and make some sort of forced smiley contact with my boys over Shreddies and tepid coffee.
Anyway, my phone lit up silently for a few seconds, heralding an announcement from the boyf. This is what it said (stet throughout):
I can't do this Lottie - I'll talk later if you want but I can't do this on am own you can't help me and I can't help you / you need to find seone better. Sorry
This man is usually articulate and grammatical. He frequently moans but this seemed like...something else.
I didn't know what to do. I felt like I wanted to go to him but I live over 100 miles away, have two children to look after and work to go to. Also, his text said (I think) that he didn't want to see me. And we all know that he doesn't want to see my kids.
A bit of background: the boyf had a retinal detachment a few weeks ago, had it sewn back on, then went to Paris with his daughter this week. While he was there, it became dis-attached again. He spent £700 getting back to the UK to go to Moorfields Eye Hospital, arriving there at 11pm. They looked at him and said they couldn't operate until the following day, so, instead of spending another £200 on a room at the local Premier Inn (half term price hike), he wandered the streets all night with his massive backpack and one working eye. He turned up as instructed at 6.30am at Moorfields, waited all day for his op, but was sent away at 6pm. No dice.
When he got home he had an 'episode' or, as we used to say in the Midlands, he went mental. He texted me yesterday and used the 'C' word 7 times. He said he had punched holes through doors and walls, smashed things, pull shelves down.
He has depression. He has been on a wrecking crusade before, but the text this morning made me worried.
So worried that - dramatic pause - I texted his ex wife.
This is the first time I've ever made contact with her. She has made plenty of contact with me (see previous posts) but I'd never texted back. But I know that she loves him, would do anything for him, and I wondered if either she or his daughter would phone him to check he was ok.
She came back to me within minutes, simply saying:
I too am deeply concerned. He's not good around people when he's in a crisis but we'll go over now and do what we can.
And that's exactly what she did. She and her daughter went round, got him out of bed, made him a cup of tea and tidied up as best they could. She sent me two more texts, telling me that she was there, and that he was well rested, and that they would go to hospital with him if necessary.
I've spoken to boyf since and she did go with him to the hospital today and waited with him for hours - until he was sent away again.
She is a good woman and loves her husband, despite everything he has done to her, without any sort of edge. He is a very, very lucky man to have her.
On the phone tonight, the boyf has said that he doesn't want to be the sort of person who needs help, and that I should look for someone else. (Obviously, I have been looking for someone else. For quite a while. But no one seems to be popping up.) The irony is that I would actually delight in helping him. If only I didn't live so far away, with two little beings to look after.
He may have his op tomorrow and his wife may be back, holding his hand. This is weirding me out somewhat but he needs someone and I am not prepared to chuck everything up in the air and run to his aid.
Tomorrow I'm half expecting a text saying he's back with his wife. It'd the best thing for him. And I will shrug and move along, searching for the next unsuitable man in my life.