A letter to AVB

Dear Andre,

I'm sorry I didn't get in touch over Christmas, everything was just still so raw and I needed space to work out how I really felt.

You left so abruptly that we never really had any closure, I hope you don't mind my writing, I know it's the coward's way but I don't think I'm ready to hear your voice again.

I still miss you. I wanted you from the first time I saw you, jealously watching as you stepped out with Chelsea. Some people thought your reputation was tarnished when you didn't fit in with the West London crowd but that seemed inevitable to me - they're so rich and superficial, no relationship lasts more than a year over there. I looked on with a mix of sympathy and desire as you were stabbed in the back and cast to the curb. Of course those were bad times for me too, I'd grudgingly come to accept my life with an older man but even he was treating me badly, thought he could do better and didn't care who he told. You were so stylish, so intelligent, everything that he wasn't. It upset me when people referred to you as sloppy seconds, it was never that, we had a chance to build something together, something solid and long term. You were my future.

I keep going over things in my head, again and again, trying to figure where things first started to go wrong. It's easy to blame your stubbornness but there must be more to it than that. Maybe there should have been more patience from my side, it's just the good times had begun to feel fleeting and the lows had never been lower - that time those Cockneys robbed us, or our visit to the city of Manchester. It became embarrassing, I spent my life defending you - pointing out the signs of progress, blaming our issues on growing pains. By the time Brendon and his boys came to visit I guess I wasn't even surprised to find you gone, a roller coaster has to have ups as well as downs.

I know we could have been successful, I keep telling myself this. I believed in you Andre and I felt like you wanted it to work as much as I did, I know there were at least a couple of attractive foreigners chasing you in the summer and you stayed faithful, but were we both just living a lie? Our first year together felt great at the time but we were regularly bailed out when we found ourselves in trouble. This year we've not had that safety net and I'll admit I had begun to question if maybe that was the only difference. Perhaps things were always a little stale but I deliberately turned a blind eye - seeking success and stability instead of excitement or adventure. Perhaps that was the right thing to do too, perhaps we could have had it all eventually, but life can't be lived on hopes and hypotheticals.

I know you're ambitious and I bought into your plans, I'm sure in time others will too and you'll find the success you deserve. I've come to accept it's over between us though, like it or not, and so that's what I'm really writing to say:

I've met someone else.

It's Tim, you know, that you used to work with. I'd rather you heard it from me than on the grapevine, I know how small this world is. He's always been lurking in the background and I'm finally giving him a chance.

At first I thought it was just a rebound thing, someone to tide me over until something more serious came along. I'm still not convinced it will last more than six months but he is winning me over bit by bit. Life is exciting again, even dangerous at times, he doesn't have your style of course but he can make me laugh, and best of all he's great with the kids.

I'll always keep a space for you in my heart Andre but not everything in life works out the way we want. Maybe one day we'll meet again, on some warm European evening, and we'll be able to look back and accept the change was best for both of us.

I do hope so, until then try to stay strong,


PS - I'm keeping Steffen, I always felt he was more my friend than yours anyway. Hope that's ok.

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