#bloganuary #bestdayofmylife #happymemories #bloganuary2023
I’m super blessed writing an answer to this prompt, because I didn’t just have the one day – I had almost a year of the happiest days I’ve ever had in my life.
The year was 2009 and I gathered up my courage in a sexless 7-year marriage to “a nice, polite man” and told him to either find a way to have sex with me (marriage counselling, experimenting to see what we each liked, role play – whatever – I just wanted to be held!) or I would leave him. He drew his line in the sand “NOPE” so I did the bravest thing I’ve ever done in my life and I packed a pink suitcase and left. With just that.
Jon got the car, the house…he got everything.
I got my life back and to me, that was priceless.
When I landed in Australia, that was probably one of the best days of my life. I was coming home. I was going to be in the same country as my family and more importantly – all my mates. I stepped off the plane and when I came out of the “arrivals” area, about 10 of my friends – from all different friend groups – cheered and surrounded me in a massive group hug. A few of the guys from the friend groups I belonged to gave me ‘that look’ – the “oh…you’re suddenly quite attractive” look – because I’d lost 30kgs in the divorce. Stress, anxiety and coming under constant fire can do that to a person. Go figure.
That day – I felt like a rock star. My friends had a big “we love Janet” sign up, balloons and flowers. Even though they were from different friend groups, they’d all worked together to come and get me and we all ended up at Sonya’s house. Gracie cooked lasagne, Caris and Jess made salad, Dean and Shiryan drove off and came back with cakes and chocolates and we all sat around a table talking and laughing. I remember looking around at each beloved face of a friend and thinking I’d gone to Heaven. I love being around my friends sooo much. I took them in, passing plates to each other, nodding and smiling and I thought to myself “life can’t be any better than this, surely”
But then it DID.
Because 2 weeks later, I was lining up to take a flight to Darwin to see the boy I had been in love with since I was 14 years old. I’d dreampt of seeing Matt again for 12 years. Now was my time! After everything I’d been through in that 12 years…now the thing I wanted most was a 5-hour journey away. I remember on that day, severe storms delayed the flight. I texted Matt: “Severe storm, Matt – I don’t even know if I’ll be flying in today to see you” and burst into frustrated tears when I hit send. Matt texted back right away – something like “No no. It has to be today. I’ve waited so long to see you. I need to see you today, Jan. I can’t wait any longer” and reading that text made me feel like I’d won a million dollars because I could see that Matt was invested in this, too. I wasn’t alone in this incredible romantic adventure – he was waiting for me.
I flew out, lost my virginity that fateful weekend to the boy I’d held a candle for – over decades – and flew back, again to be collected at ‘arrivals’ by my best friends. Just 4 of them this time, but they were the 4 who knew my whole story about Matt and when I saw their kind faces all waiting for me, I burst into tears because I knew Matt didn’t love me…and simultaneously knew that these girls did. I am loved. I was going to be okay. My heart was broken, but when Gracie, Sonya, Jess and Caris put their arms around me, it held me together when my insides were crumbling apart.
2009 was year my year of YES.
Yes to going to the beach with Justin, Aubrey (I was forming a crush on him) and Vikki. It was fun swimming in the ocean on hot days, laying out on towels and talking about fashion and house-styling with Vicki while Justin and Aubs surfed the waves. The glimpse of Aubrey’s washboard stomach…oh my Gosh…it melted me and I almost forgot about Matt that day. Almost.
Yes to rounding up cows with Aubs weeks later by singing to them. We stood in a field on a gorgeous evening with the sun setting behind us, harmonising easily together to our favourite Church songs. Aubs has an awesome voice and it was an afternoon I’ll never forget…just him, me and the cows.
Yes to going on a boat trip with my bonus parents and Troy. I used to date Troy but after we’d broken up, we’d become best friends and I’d adopted Pete and Lyn as my “bonus set” of parents. They have loved me through the hardest moments of my life and cheered me on in the best times. I loved sitting on the bow of the boat and trailing my hand through the water of the Swan River. We stopped out boat when Troy spotted an icecream van on the side of a bank. We all got an icecream and I remember how incredible I felt sitting next to Pete, licking my icecream before it melted on my hands and again thinking “life can’t get any better than this, surely?”
But it kept getting better.
I was single, so I signed up to dating site “Oasis” and was surprised at how many good looking, sweet, talented, hard-working, charming guys sent me messages asking me to take me on a date. To save money (and this is very cheeky indeed), I accepted dates for every meal of the day – breakfast with Tim, lunch with Gary and dinner with Mike…and so on. It was hard keeping up with names, to be honest. I had A LOT of fun and went on so many dates. Every date was a good laugh and although a lot of guys seemed to want to take it to the next level and sleep with me/date me seriously as a girlfriend rather than a one-off, I was happier going home alone and stretching out in my own Queen sized bed.
I spent a year saying “yes” to EVERYTHING.
“Want to be friends with benefits?” Yes Patrick, I will 🙂 (that was a VERY GOOD decision, by the way)
“Janet – want to come clubbing with us?” YES.
“Want to come out for drinks?” Yes. (Even though I don’t drink).
“Want to try yoga/skydiving/surfing/mini golf?” Yes. Yes to it all.
Hands down, the BEST. YEAR. OF. MY. LIFE.
When I get to Heaven, I imagine God lets you choose how old you’d like to be while you’re there. I’m going to choose 32 🙂