Part 3: I Won’t Say I’m In Love!

It has been a hectic couple of months with work, the holidays, and visiting loved ones in California (shout out!) that writing the blog was put on the shelf for a while, but I wrote this part 3 and never posted it. I thought I might as well since it has no purpose but for this silly blog. So now without further adieu I bring to you all part three of the Chris and Michelle love story saga. I know, I know, you are all too excited.

It was a rainy weekday evening (not unlike most evenings in England) in May 2016. Chris and I were about two months into our relationship and just finished dinner. We decided to watch a movie and cuddle before he took me back to my very small yet loud (from half-term late night parties) University accommodation. I don’t recall the film we watched exactly because the next few moments greatly overshadowed whatever it was. I do remember at a laughing point in the movie Chris just spew from nowhere, “Michelle, I love you”. I quickly looked up at him in disbelief like a deer in headlights. My heart started to race. Thoughts were racing in my head.

He said what? Omg what do I say? He keeps staring at me. Oh my god what do I do?  He lo-oves me? Ah he is still staring! Do I love him? I don’t know. Why is there so much staring? Where did this come from? We have just been doing the usual “I really REALLY like you”, but never the big L word (the love word not the lesbian word). Oh shit. He is still staring! I bet he is waiting for an answer. What do I say? What do I say?!

“Thank you?” I responded with a hint of uncertainty. A big slap to the face, “thank you”.

Still trapped in the aftermath of the moment I panicked. Thinking ways on how to save myself. Maybe I should force start making out or should I not look at him for the rest of the night? Oh boy, this was not going to end well.

I could not believe I fell into one of the most played out scenarios in films and sitcoms of what not to do when someone says the words, I love you. I knew by uttering those words I blew it. In almost every sitcom scenario it ended up with someone getting offended, not talking to other person for days, or possibly even leading to a break up! Heck! If I dropped the L bomb on him and he responded with a thank you I would be definitely offended.

Chris probably could tell I was almost hyperventilating and decided to just laughed and say something along the lines as this, “Don’t panic. You don’t have to say it back. I don’t want to rush or push you to say anything you don’t feel. I just wanted to say it because I felt it.” In my head there was a huge sigh of relief and also guilt, guilt that I could not say I love you back.

What he said kept going through my head over and over again for the rest of the night. He did not want to rush me? He just wanted to say it because he felt it? After years and years of telling myself that no guy could love me because of this insecurity or because of that insecurity, I couldn’t believe some guy would say it to me as plain as day. How brave, and some might say dumb of him, to leave his heart on the table like that. It made me admire him even more, but was it exactly love?

The next morning I remember waking up thinking of him and my heart felt all squishy (not sure if that is the correct way to describe it…) and frantic inside. Oh shit, I thought, I think I do love him. I started to get angry at myself. I turned into the cliche of all cliches!

It took me over a month to admit that I loved him back, luckily for me he stuck around. I felt like Megara from the Disney film Hercules going back and forth in my head singing “I Won’t Say I’m In Love” (video provided just for those who did not have a good childhood) Disney’s Won’t Say I’m In Love. I wished that little tiny women muses would sing in the background “who’d you think you’re kidding” and tell me it was okay I was in love, but I didn’t I just had my good ol’ friends, Ms. Anxiety and Mr. Panic, to torture my mind constantly. Do you actually love him? You gotta figure this out before he leaves you!

When I finally did say the L word it was the most anti climatic I love you ever. Again we were watching TV because you know TV is so romantic. “I love you, Chris.” I blurted out.

“Sure. I love you too.” Chris kissed me and we continued watching TV.

That was it. We both loved each other. Done. Time to now cue the uplifting romantic comedy music to this overly cheesy bit of the blog. THIS WILL BE AN EVERLASTING LOOOOVEEE FOR MEEE!!

This was similar to how we discussed any new step of our relationship. Moving in? He suggested it and after a month with good ol’ Ms. Anxiety and Mr. Panic questioning how much I loved him I say yes. Marriage? Even up to the very moment I was walking down the aisle I still was asking myself, Do I really love him enough to do this? It is just love can be so scary. To trust someone enough to give them your love is scary. There is no other way to describe it besides scary that is why you put a lot of thought and consideration and tons of panic into it.

Part 4: The Wedding, but before that a little blog about our trip to California.


Burlesque Freshers Show Pictures (WARNING: Lingerie and me crying)

So last post I mentioned I may post photos from the last UEA Burlesque show that happened Tuesday, the 3rd of October depending on how they turned out. They turned out really good except my face just turned into wonderful weirdness in some photos…my face is not a model’s face and it does not function like one. For people who don’t know me so well pulling off sexy is not usually my thing. So I tend to go for the funny or the ridiculous.

Madame Rouge (my stage persona) did two performances that night, one smashing a cake in her face and the other as Frank N Furter. Both routines I have done in the past, but because of good reviews (and because they are just fun) I decided to do them again for the UEA Freshers Show. So without further adieu here is the two performances with a little narration included by yours truly with them. Also, don’t go any further if you get offended by lingerie or chubby ladies (aka me).

  1. “Hungry Eyes” by Eric Carmen (Google it if you are unfortunate not to have ever heard of it).  I am lip singing to a cheap chocolate cake because I’ve got Hungry Eeeeyyyees.
I am imagining what the Chocolate Cake taste like that is next to me.
The face you make when someone gives you a “F”ing carrot instead! Thanks, but no thanks Ms. Bobbie Derriere!


“I need you to see! This love was meant to be!”

The scene of the crime and regret.


2. “Sweet Transvestite” by Tim Curry aka Frank N Furter (Definitely google). One of my favourite characters of all time. Although, I forgot at home his pearl necklace and the darn Ebay temporary tattoos I bought of the tattoo he has on his arm failed to stay on. I assume they knew I was an imposter.

“How do you do, I see you’ve met
My faithful handyman”
“Why don’t you stay for the night? Or maybe a bite?”
“I’ve been making a man, with blonde hair and a tan. And he good for relieving my…..tension.”
“So I’ll remove the cause, but not the symptom!”

THE END of the photos. That’s it. It is done. A big thank you to Lady Cleo and Bobbie Derriere and the whole UEA Burlesque Society. You guys are truly amazing!


NorCon Pictures

So a little break from Chris’s and mine love story nonsense due to this week being fairly busy. Besides prepping for two performances at a UEA Burlesque show, which happened on Tuesday, (I may post pictures of that depending on how weird I look gorging myself with a chocolate cake. Long story) I also visited Nor Con, a tv and comic convention in Norfolk. Both the show and convention required mental preparation and pushed my body and anxiety issues to the max so no writing got done. In a future blog I plan to discuss such problems but now is not the time. Now is the time for a few pictures from the convention and relishing in the fact that I cosplayed and exposed myself in tights and a leotard as Elastic Girl from the Pixar movie The Incredibles on a very windy and cold English afternoon. Also I wanted to show how happy I am with the art I bought from Carolyn Edwards Art and Little Images. Internet I present to you Michelle as Elastic Girl.

Tinder · Uncategorized

Crazy Little Thing Called Love: Part 2 He Came From Nowhere!

There is a trademark cartoon skit in which a cartoon character reaches a highway or train crossing and needs to cross it. The character takes a look one way, it is quiet, clear for miles and miles. They look in the other direction, it is clear, no one in sight. It has been made apparent for the viewer that it is safe for the cartoon to proceed. The character takes one step forward and then BAM! A train or truck slams and flattens them like a rolling pin does to dough. It was unexpected, it came from nowhere! That was what meeting Chris felt like. He came from nowhere! He was the train or truck that flattened my life like a cartoon (Real life photo of Chris flattening me to below).


I never had a long term relationship before Chris. Heck! I never dated anyone or flirted with anyone until I opened up the Tinder application at the age of 22 (Always had my trusty book and film fictional boyfriends in high school). Since then I experienced my underwhelming first kiss and first short term boyfriend (we were only together for about 4-5 months and we never passed any real couple milestones. I did not even fart around him, which to me is the ultimate milestone). Going on first dates I felt I was a professional at, but getting to a serious relationship part now that, that was new territory for me. Chris, on the other hand, had a one long term relationship but never had a first date and never really used Tinder. So we both had experiences that the other had never had before.

He was the first one to message me on Tinder. He asked, “So how nerdy are you?” This was in response to my short introduction on Tinder in which I put that I was extremely nerdy. I felt like this was a challenge. Someone questioning my nerd standards. How dare he! How dare he indeed! Trust me, I gave him one heck of a lengthy response back with details of all the personal lives of DC Superheroes and confessing all the money I spent on comics and conventions over the years. For some odd reason that did not scare him off and he asked me out for a coffee/date. This was the first British guy to straight up ask me on a date after a day of just talking to which I was like thank you (I was pretty desperate I will not lie)!

First Date Mr. Cool to Boyfriend Chris

It was early January 2016, I vividly remember him walking down the street towards me and my first thought was Thank God he is attractive!  When I first saw his profile on Tinder I wasn’t sure of him because some of his photos were of the “Are you cute?” nature. I couldn’t tell if he was cute or a nice person from his photos because in all his photos he never smiled. No smiles in none of his photos! Did this guy ever smile!?12670606_10208448789201213_1023743953477911432_n And most importantly was he a robot?  Let me show you what I was working with. This photo is him with a lion (on the left). A not as epic the other “big cat” photos I have seen in the past, but still cool because the lion was photo bombing him. I would be smiling and excited near the lion, but Chris, just straight face.

12345412_10208059691154005_4332245591778803912_nThen there is this photo with the only panda in the UK next to him. Little did I know at the time that this face WAS IN FACT his “excited” face! (When Chris told me this I literally could not stop laughing at him for 15 minutes straight and every now and again it bites back and haunts him like what I am doing now).  Despite not ever smiling in photos and presenting himself in this serious demeanour, I was like yeah he could be cool at least he visits animals so I swiped right and thank goodness I did.

I don’t remember much that was said on the first date except I blabbed on and on about comics, weird things I have done and ate, writing, etc while Chris added in things here and there when I asked him but mostly stayed quiet. I thought he was being Mr. Cool and I thought I was ruining it by being Miss Too Much Information girl. I swear I reveal too much when I first meet people. Words just project from my mouth like the Mean Girls Word Vomit. Gosh, why did you tell him that dad joke or why did you tell him that the first thing you mastered as a baby was pooping on the toilet (remember when earlier in this post I said I was a professional at first dates? I bet you are questioning this statement now). I kept thinking I was the stereotypical loud mouth talkative American girl with this quiet cool British guy. However, in meeting up with him face to face I got to see him smile (Yes his mouth can form an actual smile!) and laugh at my dumb jokes, which made me like him even more. Ladies, lesson for today: A guy who genuinely laughs at your jokes is a keeper. His smile was the best thing about him. We spent two hours on this coffee date and I got the feeling that Mr. Cool liked me but wasn’t sure. 

When it was time for us to end our date we went outside and said our goodbye, which goodbyes on first dates are always a wee bit awkward. You first do the awkward hug, then you look at each other. You wonder if we are going to kiss or not? Always awkward even if you both want to kiss each other. We ended up kissing, briefly, like for three seconds, and Chris jolted back, said bye, and left in a rush. Okay bye? I stood there a bit confused and watched him leave. Maybe the kiss repulsed him I thought? I kept thinking I ruined it in some Michelle fashion. 

I enjoyed our first date. He was nice and easy to talk to and although the kiss was short I felt something whether that something was the fantasy spark every person talks about when they have met “The One” or the fact I have not been kissed for a long time and really wanted to make out with someone I don’t know; however, I do know I was sad that it ended and I could not stop thinking about it. If the kiss lasted any longer I believe it would have had the potential of being worthy of the Princess Diaries’s foot pop.1aa53b331cf0e70657067912f2cbaddb

Later on that day I received a very polite British message from Chris apologising for the date and kiss. He revealed that it was his first ever date and he was super nervous hence why he was quiet and awkward about the kiss. I just told him that if he wanted to make it up to me he needed to go on another date with me again. And we did. We went to Nando’s (a chicken restaurant for Americans who don’t know), watched the snow fall, and kissed for WAY more than three seconds.

From there our relationship blossomed. I think by the third date I even deleted my Tinder. We went on little adventures and even had nights in watching films I forced Chris to watch like Disney and Rocky Horror Picture Show. It wasn’t until March (it took me awhile to sort out my commitment issues) where this man who literally came from nowhere and I finally agreed to call each other boyfriend and girlfriend and made it official on the ever powerful holy social media, Facebook.  PART THREE: First “I Love You”s (Sitcom Style) and The “Proposal”.

Tinder · Uncategorized

Crazy Little Thing Called Love: Part 1 Tinder

Well I don’t know about you guys, but I definitely did not see that one coming. Trust me, if you knew me before last year you really know that I was not a fan of myself getting married. My plan in life was to be the stereotypical “career woman”. I would focus on getting a book published, then in my forties become a cougar and date younger men because I think it would be fun, then fifties adopt a child. The thought of finding love and investing your life with someone else just seemed exhausting to me and I liked the idea of becoming a cougar. Of course like any person I dreamt from time to time (especially after watching Disney) about that one person out there in the world for me, but I didn’t actually see it happening. I’ll even quote one of my first blogs from when I arrived in England in 2015, “The Lord-Mayor of Norwich even greeted all the students to Norwich noting that UEA is known for people meeting their future spouses, which I am pretty sure she was lying about so don’t get too excited mom.”  So how did it happen? How did the this anti-marriage gal get herself hitched in a matter of only two years? One word, Tinder. I know, I know, jaw dropping. 

For those who aren’t familiar with the world of tinder it is this superficial dating app on your phone that you swipe left if you are not interested in knowing a person and right if you are. My previous experiences in using this app in California had led to awkward uncomfortable situations, many let downs, and terrifying scenarios that probably I should not post because I know my mom will be reading this. Howdy mom! Okay, okay, you pulled my arm I will tell you one vague story. I did have a creepy man who wanted me to meet his mom on the first date and kept threatening me because I did not want to meet up. I had to utilise my two friends to pretend to be “ghetto” and threaten this guy’s delicate regions (hi mom!) over the phone in order for him to quit bothering me. He bought their “ghettoness” too because I never heard from him again. Thank god for friends willing to threaten men for you! Am I right?

Tinder showed me the different strategies that men thought were effective for approaching a woman. Guys I know some of you are desperate, but get to know a woman first before you send certain photos (photos of their “dogs” mom nothing else…)  Also I found that there are types of photos men like to display of themselves. For instance, we got the classic “lost in the crowd” pictures where a man puts a bunch of pictures of him “hanging out with his bros”, but doesn’t signify who he is in these photos so you have to guess and kind of hope you are swiping right for the only cute man in the photo. Then there are the “too active” men, the men who take loads of photos of them climbing mountains, jogging marathons, skydiving, etc. Sure some are good looking but damn! I usually swiped left to those knowing full well my fat ass could not keep up.  Then we have the “peacocks” the men who show things off like their fancy cars or their six pack with no face in the picture. We get it, you have no life aside from your superficiality. Just stop. Then we got the dopes who post photos of them with other girls. Who is this hot girl next to you? I don’t want to know you have attractive friends that are better looking than me! The “Are you cute?” photos where you are not quite sure if they are cute or not, but you just have to hope that that one good photo is what they actually look like. And finally, the trend going around when I was on Tinder, that actually made me angry, was the “big cat” photos; in which, people would take photos lying in front of or next to a live tiger or lion with no safety between them. Like what? Why? How? How was this even possible and where did they even take these photos? I once asked a man where he took his photo and he said, “It is for me to know and you to find out. ;)”  Unmatched him in a heartbeat. Don’t play with my emotions! I need a picture with a tiger!


I feel like I could do an entirely separate blog just on my California tinder experiences because most of it was bad, not all of it, but most of it. Heck! I could have been the Carrie Bradshaw (Sex in the City reference) of Tinder. Anyway, that was California tinder England was much different.

Months into my studies in England I started wanting male attention and was bored, which lets face it is why many women go on Tinder in the first place, so I opened up the app once again. I had really low expectations from the start; however, I was slightly hoping English men were more “polite” in their approach. And oh boy were they ever so polite! In fact they were way too polite! Everyone wanted to talk for weeks before meeting!  When I asked about getting coffee men would either stop talking to me or say “oh no lets get to know each other first”, but can’t we do that face to face? I usually preferred to get a coffee/tea almost immediately and not waste two weeks small talking to see if I finally like you in person. Also, for some reason I have, well had, an irrational fear of talking with an attractive guy weeks on Tinder, but then ending up meeting him in person and finding out his voice was weird and nasally. It is weird and I know my voice is no bed of roses but you know that is why it is called an irrational fear. Plus, coffee/tea dates are cheap and a great way if you want to leave a really just god awful date early.

Anyhow, while small talking the same, “Hey. How are you? Where do you work? Yadda yada yada,” with a few guys who probably would not ask me out for a few weeks, I matched with a Chris (well another one since there seems to be about a billion guys named Chris in England), THEN I matched with THE Chris. BAM! Cliffhanger.



Player 1 Has Entered Back Into the Game

If you were not aware, I ran a blog about two years ago (Michelle’s Year Abroad Blog) to record my so-called “year abroad” in England, but that ended up failing after a few posts. Why? Life got in the way, well more like Netflix and laziness, but I consider that part of life so it is a valid excuse.

So why am I starting up again? A little push from a friend. The other day I received a hand written letter through the mail (yes, she used such ancient forms of IMG_7965communication) from a friend, lets just say it may or may not be the friend I first made in England when she randomly yelled out my name from a window the first night I arrived, tired and exhausted and pretty sure no one, but the UEA administration knew of my name. Anyway, I received a letter from this friend who really encouraged me to give writing another go. After having to write academically for my masters, I felt  literally stripped of my writing confidence because, I will admit, my academic writing ability is like watching an old dog trying to hop on the sofa. You stare intensely at the sofa, planning your every move, then when the moment comes to jump up you jump with all your old dog strength and barely make it, hitting your face on the ground. You try again. Hitting your face once more. After a few more tries you decide hmm maybe it would be better to just sleep on the ground instead. That is what my writing experience is like in general. I mean I didn’t have a lot of confidence in my overall writing ability to beginwith, but now I am like whatever might as well do this blog for me and my sanity and possibly bless the world with my train of thoughts again. If it does not go anywhere fine, but at least my old dog mind will sleep in peace on the soft comfortable carpet floor.

A little update on life since previous blog. This time two years ago I was planning my trip to the United Kingdom (and also waiting in deep anticipation for the UK student visa that seemed to be taking its sweet time to get its butt to me). The original plan was to study just for the year and be open to all the job possibilities in England. Looking back at that plan now I laugh. How naive I was to think finding a job was ever going to be easy especially when you are not a native from the country. Oh younger ambitious Michelle, but hey I am still here so something must have worked (marrying an English man)!

I am currently working part time at an after school club, volunteering with the Norwich Castle and the Library, and in my spare time I think of Burlesque routines for the few shows a year I force my nerves to go through. I graduated with a Masters (little has that done for me in the real world). Oh! I think the most crucial thing that happened within the two years was my marriage to an English man. AN ENGLISH MAN! Sorry I have to remind the England dreaming high school version of myself. Sometimes it is hard for her to adjust to the fact that she is now living in England with a man, an English man! But more of that later.  

I can’t tell you all the stories that I have accumulated over the years because honestly that would be boring for you the reader and quite frankly I am too lazy and forgetful to type it all down. So little posts in this blog along the way are better. Also in this new blog page you might see a few art pieces, some rants about TV shows, pieces of my stories that I am working on, or just photos that I feel need sharing to the world. I really want to make something out of this blog this time around. So I shall be hitting the refresh button, and starting over in this new frontier world of blogging.0X5A7361