The only time that I actually was afraid that me and Mark would split up was before New Year’s last year. For loads of reasons, I had gotten into my mind that my parents were displeased with my progress, and that they were coming to England to basically bring me back to Sweden.

Me being… well, me… I connected loose dots into a highly complex disaster scenario, and I pushed Mark away. That is the only time that Mark has been really, really furious with me. Maybe even furious enough, had I pushed on, to break up with me.

It was the perfect storm where Mark thought he was reliving his time with his ex, where I thought that my parents were coming to split us up, and where everything I had doggedly pursued since I was fifteen or so would suddenly unravel.

One thing that I count as both a flaw and a positive, depending, with me is that I’m a persistent bugger when I want to be. I can have these blind-folds that let me focus on a goal, and doggedly pursue the goal until I reach it or until I fail completely.

When I got into my head that I wanted to go to England and finish school there, I basically became a study worm. I needed excellent grades, and I got them. Eyes on the ball, and all that. Prioritise this, downgrade that. I don’t know where I get this stubbornness. I pretty much nagged my parents into letting me go by setting up a system that I knew they could accept. It was a highly manipulative operation, and I’m not proud of it, but there you go.

This stubbornness is a boon when I want to achieve something, but it is a flaw when I paint myself into a corner. Like with New Year’s and the events around it. And this stubbornness made me connect all the faint, brief, and scarce dots into this complicated disaster, and nearly turned my life into a true avalanche of misery because losing Mark would have been the worst thing that has ever happened to me.

I’m starting to think that I’ve painted myself into another corner with this cottage. Don’t doubt it, I’ll stick it out, but I don’t actually have anything to do during the day and have become entirely dependent on the car. And since Mark is working every day, I don’t have a car.

I tried to work more, but this cottage is sort of antithetical to working. I keep thinking about how isolated it is, and I was doubly reminded of this when Ola, the next door teenager, came over to present his girlfriend to us. I had the sense that the presentation was more along the lines of, “I’ll show you my girlfriend so you don’t think anything funny about me”.

Instead of working, I went out and ran for ten kilometres, and that just added to the sense of isolation I’m feeling. Maybe we should have taken a flat in town. Now that we’ve paid for this cottage, I can’t really change anything, but maybe… maybe I should have taken something in town.

This is not something I’m going to bother Mark with though. He needs to get on with things at his job, and not worry about me having a fit of cabin fever here. That was the purpose of this trip, after all, for him to do that job. Mark is so happy and eager. I’m not going to spoil this for him. I just need to get my shit together.

An illustration about how things are, I made Chicken Chimanga today. It took me two hours. Just to have something to do, since I couldn’t get into my novel or my film for the second day running.