Mix Match Day! (long post)

No, this isn’t a new holiday I have made up.

It been a pick’a’mix bag of emotions and events today for both of us.


The day pretty much started off pretty uggish. I had yet another episode of insomnia this week (waking up at 4/5am after not getting home from work from at least 11:30pm). So giving up the fight with my body to try to get to sleep, I dragged myself downstairs and lay on the sofa; an hour later my parents joining me. On Tuesday I did something to sprain my wrist at work and  it was in pain this morning. Ibuprofen didn’t seem to be helping much either.

I also wasn’t sure how today was going to go so I was probably a teeny bit apprehensive.

I met Dale at 9am to pick him up from his house to go on an outing with my parents. The day before I had messaged him to ask if there was anything I should remember to bring to make today more relaxing for him; Anti-Bac Gel and Hand Wipes. I had previously asked whether he would come with us, and he said yes as long as he was able to wash his hands thoroughly afterwards. Why?

We were going Fruit and Vegetable picking today. 

It’s sort of a family thing we do every year and there’s a farm about an hour away from us that grows a range of fruit and vegetable which during the end of spring throughout summer lets the public come and pick their own groceries. It is great fun and even at 20 years old, I still love it. My parents (in an effort to better the relationship between themselves and Dale) invited Dale to join us.

So, after some tea, coffee, cake and bacon sandwiches, we got our punnets and went a’picking for some yummy stuff. To start with Dale was a little withdrawn (he was having a moment unrelated to the activity) but after talking and a little encouragement he started to engage and, gladly, started to enjoy himself. Originally he was a little reserved on picking fruit himself, because of not knowing what to look for. However, when we got round to the raspberries, I think he felt more confident in finding the ripe fruit.

My parents acknowledged that how I show Dale things are okay and nothing to worry about, is by doing it myself. I think and hope they’ll do the same. (Just to clarify, I don’t think Dale needs babying, but sometimes telling someone jumping of the diving board is safe isn’t enough and so you have to do it yourself to show it’s safe… it’s a bit of a over-compensating analogy, but it works). 

Dale really perked up when we went rhubarb picking and offered to pay for the rhubarb in exchange for a rhubarb and raspberry crumble made by my wonderful mum (she’s a killer cook/baker).

When we had finished all of our picking, we had a collection of Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Raspberries, Plumbs, Rhubarb, Butternut Squash, Courgettes and some Sweet Corn. I did ask Dale whether he enjoyed himself, and he did reply with “Yep, but please don’t ask me to do it next week.” He was quite relieved when I told him we only do it once a year, which he then said he’d be fine to do it next year.

In the car on the way home Dale suggested to my parents about having a BBQ which they were quite happy to do (I can’t remember how the subject of BBQ’s came about. I think someone was talking about the significant number of burgers my parents were hoarding in their freezer which then lead to BBQ talk).

Boy, did I wish we either got home either a little earlier, or a little later…

When we arrived home, me and Dale got ready to go to the shop to get a few things for the BBQ.

Que my next door neighbour who we have been having a few problems with lately. She starts yelling at my dad about what-not, which Dale and I quickly walk to our car. I realise I had forgotten my purse after getting into the car, so needed to go back into the house. Next door neighbour then proceeds to stop me in the middle of the street and rather angrily prevents me from walking, to the point where I need to call my Dad to help me get round her.

Before today, I had only heard about what my neighbour was saying and doing. I couldn’t quite believe how bad it was until today. This lady, who when I was younger had taught me how to draw and essentially gave me my passion for art; had let me borrow my first ever guitar from her so I could learn; who me and my sister used to go round baking cookies, who’s nieces and nephews used to come round to come play with us when they stayed with her; this lady was not someone I recognised. She was so angry. She was also accusing my parents of stuff which they hadn’t done.

I was incredibly shocked when she pinned me in the street, not letting me past her, shouting angrily at me, almost pleading that I take her side in things. After getting my purse and walking back to my car, I saw Dale standing outside the Car. When I was inside the safety of my car, Dale asked if I was okay, which I told him I was ‘fine’, and proceeded to pull off.

I didn’t get half-way round the corner until I had to pull over because I was hyper-ventilating. I couldn’t breathe and I was crying so hard. What had just happened shocked me so much, my body couldn’t process it. I used to look up to my next door neighbour. When I got into college for an art course, or when I had done another painting, or when I got into art college I couldn’t wait to let her know. She was one of my go-to-persons for arty stuff. She was really interested in the stuff I was doing too. But when I saw her like this; angry, bitter and more importantly, she didn’t look at all well, I was shaken to my deepest core.  It had just come out of no-where.

If Dale wasn’t with me, I don’t know what would have happened next. I probably would have been able to calm myself down, but not as quickly as what Dale was able to do. Dale, having experience with his own Anxiety, jumped into ‘protective, comforting, strong, amazing boyfriend’ mode. The only other people in my life who can do what Dale did are my parents.

I think what’s funny, is that Dale admitted he could tell I wasn’t ‘fine’ when he had asked originally, and he even said he knew he shouldn’t have let me drive off (I think next time he’ll be taking my keys off me so I can’t pull away), but I think he also knew we had to get away from the situation. Dale. Is. Amazing. He seemed to be ten steps in front of the present at that moment which helped because I had less ‘other’ stuff to worry about.

I don’t even remember turning the engine off or putting the hand brake on, so I’m glad Dale was there to make sure everything was safe with the car. 

The only one other time I remember feeling the way I did in the car, was when I was dealing with a spider, wasp or Needle (cannula).

After calming down and getting my wits back, we went back to Dale’s to chill out some more; babying me even more than what he had been with my sprained wrist. The day carried on quite nicely afterwards with no more drama, apart from the occasional banter between Dale and my parents.


Dale also likes fresh fresh Sweetcorn, to the point of [joking] telling me that we need to go back next week for some more corn.

Yeah. Not happening boy.

Thanks for reading guys.

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Author: Alli

Howdy! Artist | Illustrator | Designer |Photographer | Waitress What do ya know... I'm a round-house aspie lover!

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