young woman sits on a thrown and she looks at the camera, white text on a black banner reads "She"

“I saw a bird in a hedge and I was like ‘birb’ and then I was like… Kitten!” he says. I laugh deeply, mischieviously.

“Birb” is my way way of noting the presence of a bird – don’t ask me how it came about, just know that it just did. I’d watch the birds on the bird bath by the pond and each time a house sparrow landed on the rim, I’d casually say “birb”. I like house sparrows, they’re chatty, friendly, dumpy little things. Oddly familiar, really.

Not too soon after ny grocery delivery on Monday I had another knock at the door: the pest control officer. I wasn’t ready for him at all, I still had piles of fresh meat and frozen produce stacked in the hallway and waiting to be put away. All I could do is push it backwards for a moment and apologise to him.

“Don’t worry about it!” he tells me, “the sun will come up tomorrow” he says. I sigh a heavy sigh and smile weakly.

“That’s exactly the sort of thing my father used to say” I say. I miss that. I miss his groundedness, his wisdom, his calmness. Him.

He checks both bait traps then tells me that neither trap has been touched. It’s reassuring in a way, and saddening in another. I don’t want anything to die that shouldn’t be in my home, I’d have much preferred a catch and release.

We talk for a while, and before he leaves he does something that feels oh so familiar to me. He calls me “my dear”.

It’s not familiar as in how my father would call me, sure, but it’s familiar in how a lot of older men call me. I treat them with kindness and respect, as is to be expected. I’m ladylike, even if I’m no lady.

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Yesterday I did a little more work on the garden, installing eight more gravel grids and laying down two more buckets of gravel. Before I headed out, though, I had a plan.

You could just say that I have been, ah, trained by Will to know my worth now. I don’t believe that I am better than anyone else for sure, but I do believe that I am deserving of kindness as well as help and support sometimes and I’m not afraid to use dirty tactics on the right people in order to get it. Look, if you’ve got someone who mistreats you, manipulates you and lies to you who, for want of a better word, can actually be “useful” to your immediate ambitions, what are you going to do? It’s not “nice” I know, but then sometimes the moral high ground sucks anyway and it can even leave you worse off. I’m not always nice, sometimes I’m strategic.

So I took two rhinestone-covered bobby bins out of the box and I used them to pin my fringe to the side. Cute.

“You’re a bad girl, you know what you’re doing” my inner critic says as I fix my hair in front of the mirror.

“Yup, I do” I reply with a smile.

I tell Bill about my plan, because these are the kind of conversations we have sometimes. Often in fact.

There’s a phrase fo that, flaunting your feminine wiles, he says. I smile.

Jealous much? I shoot back.

Not at all. Should I be? I mean you’re the one whose supposed to serve me pet 😉

Supposed to be, yes, I reply with a giggle. I think there’s a phrase for that too Sir – throwing down the gauntlet 😉

There’s a song that I’ve been really into recently, and I blame Eurovision – Alessandra Mele’s Queen Of Kings. For me personally, and this is nothing against the other countries entering, but it was just… it was power, it was strength, it was good. It felt good. Queen of Kings. That’s me, that’s who I am. I am a Queen of Kings, even if Matt didn’t seem to agree.

“My good Sir, did you not once name me QuEGOTSS?” I challenge. He agrees.

“And what, pray tell, does QuEGOTSS stand for?”

“Queen Elena, Goddess Of The Stripey Sockies” he says with a laugh. It’s true I love my stripey socks, I may or may not have even slipped a few stripey pairs into Matt’s wardrobe over the years. Beware, she works in subtle, insidious ways 😉

“And so there you have it, a Queen and a Goddess no less. You should worship the ground I walk on” I say with a wink. He laughs.

Even Bill empowers me, but then, I suppose that it goes both ways. This is how I am with my “Kings”, how we are – we empower one another. I don’t actually want to be top dog and they know that really, I just test and tease them occasionally. Call it exercising their sadistic muscles, if you will 😉

I didn’t get any help in the end, but I think my neighbour was too preoccupied arguing with other people to notice my plight anyway. Once he’s off the phone though, suddenly we have a deep connection. Suddenly I know more about his private life than anyone else does because he “know(s) you won’t say anything”. Suddenly we’re “friends”.

Thanks, but really no thanks – I’m not one for fair-weather friends.

I know I had a “wobble” over Will yesterday, I was sad and annoyed at having been given up on. I didn’t give up on me the day I was born, and I’m in relationshps with two men now who have fought for me – not against one another but against life – and I for them, in Matt’s case. We’ve never given up on one another because we don’t, we won’t.

So when I love someone and I fight for them, and then they just give up on me? That hurts.

When they point out my worth and then quit on me like I’m worthless? That stings most of all.

I know now that we rushed in and I’m not too proud to admit that. We both wanted it but neither of us really knew the other and as a result, things fell apart fast. I know Will has also decided now that polyamory is not for him now and I respect that, I myself have long writen off monogamy as being not right for me because I believe it’s human nature to love more than one person at once, and I believe that I am capable of it too. I’ve also promised myself that I will only date people in existing open relationships (to help to reduce the jealousy) from now on, so that pretty much cools that whole thing off by mutual decision anyway. That still doesn’t mean that I can’t miss my friend, though.

I won’t reach out, by the way, I was the last to make contact and that’s my limit. If Will doesn’t want to talk to me anymore, I respect his decision and I will heal in time. I don’t chase people because it lowers my worth and it goes against my values. If someone wants in on my life, they’ll make themselves known.

Know, though, that I’m no easy feat. I have a man in my life who has given me endless help during some of the hardest times and a man who has supported me and surprised me (in a good way) time and time again, I can’t just be wooed with just words. It’s as Ronie Kendig once said, nothing worth having is easy or free.

Quite by chance, I saw a Youtube Short last night that sort of prompted the idea behind today’s post. The video was really about what kind of date you’d like (romantic dinner, Netflix and chill or have your partner plan everything) but it got me thinking: how often, when we read one another, do we feel like we really know that person? How often do you feel like you really know me? That’s what I wanted to share today, some of the things that have happened lately outside of my blog and that make me, me. The little things that help to tell you who I really am.

As it stands then I am 100% a Netflix and chill kinda gal. I will do restaurants, sure, but I do much prefer my home comforts. I saw a clip of Simon Pegg’s Absolutely Everything on Youtube and suggested it to Matt shortly afterwards (we’ve never seen it before) and just like that, that was date night tomorrow planned. I’ve got the Butterkist “cinema sweet” popcorn in (the best flavour) and breadsticks to go with a pot of my homemade Baileys chocolate ganache. I’ll make up some kind of pasta bake, get the lights down low and some candles on the go, and after that? We let the weekend roll 😉

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You may recall that I mentioned my indecision between liquid lipstick colours for our anniversary dinner last Saturday. Well, naturally I did treat myself to the “Royal” as well – because I had to know – and it arrived this morning. What can I say but that I was right? “Royal” is totally fit for a Queen 😉

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