I've dated various, unsuitable, characters in my past.
But I don't wish to personally dwell on them too much.
"You've got to find someone with the same values and upbringing," my mother used to tell me.
Oh she must have frequently felt exasperated by my choices, and concerned about my future. I expect I gave her many a sleepless night.
Until I met Mark and it all clicked into place.
And my mother was right. (They often are, aren't they.) It's so important to hold the same values, and (preferably in my case) experience similarities with upbringing.
Our pasts mold us, our aspirations motivate us. And if they clash, conflict and divide, well it can be game over. With a bunch of stress and heartache along the way.
I feel as if I've finally found my tribe.
Mark and his family are the mirror images of my own. And it's a breath of fresh air, as it hasn't always been this way.
Stories of mark's childhood often remind me of my own. His parents and brother I can totally relate to, and I love the fact he too is close to his cousins, aunts and uncles, not only in bonding but in distance.
Mark's cousin's daughter married her significant one a couple of weeks ago.
We had both looked forward to the occasion. Knowing it would be another momentous day, with family, champagne, cake, and a new outfit.
Mark and I even booked ourselves into a hotel to vacate to, after the fish and chips and chardonnay.
Plus a hairdresser's appointment on their wedding day, for a hair up and down. I have never done this before, sat in a salon whilst my hair was styled for a big day. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
Our room for the night.
Quintessential English church, the bride and her father. Otherwise known as Mark's cousin's daughter and husband.
Beautiful venue and grounds. Tommy made friends.
Secret doors. Well they weren't that secret but I told Tommy they were secret gardens with adventures to be discovered. Just look at him run.
Pondering about life.
The three of us.
Mark and I messing about in hotel room.
Cheesy, I know. But I'm glad I found him. Finally.