Black Days

By Alison September 19, 2011 43 Comments 2 Min Read

One of the questions I am most frequently asked is what does “Brocante” mean, and I smile and look smug and tell them that though there is no equivalent word in the English language, to the French the literal translation of “Brocante” is “article of trifling value”…
So this is what my virtual home became about: articles of beautiful, but trifling value because life was carefree enough, even through all its ups and downs, to allow me to indulge in all that is pretty and frivolous  about this world. And somehow no matter what was happening in my world I could find the wonderful in every day: the gorgeous ordinary, the precious nothings, the things that shored me up daily and all those things I thought just might bring a little joy or comfort to you. Though some days these articles of trifling value tickled me thick and fast, occasionally there would be times when life got in the way and I couldn’t find the time to share all the loveliness in my head, but always, right there in my head, that treasure chest existed, filled full of trifling gems I couldn’t wait to share.
But not today. Though through the trauma of the past week, I have occasionally switched on this computer like a drug addict seeking her old familiar fix, for the first time eight years there is no comfort to be found in trifles.  No pleasure in the possibility of telling what has turned out be a story with a desperately unhappy ending. For the first time, dear precious readers, there is no peace in the pretty. No chance of draping pain in carefully told prose, no compensation to be found for something that has left me unable to let a morsel pass my lips for five days. My throat closed. My body concentrating on forcing me to get up and get through the days, because I have to.
And so here I am. Though I despise tainting my gorgeous, polka dot home with the ugly all over again, things have happened that have made my forthcoming marriage to Richard untenable, and though I love him more than I can imagine it is possible to love someone, and he loves me as desperately as I ever thought I was capable of being loved, I cannot marry him and I have called off the wedding, given up my beautiful dress and walked sobbing to the recycling bin, with my arms full of bridal magazines and vintage books I had been carefully collecting to pile upon our wedding breakfast tables.
All is lost. And though our story is in no way what I am sure you imagine it is, it dramatically alters the shape of our future for always and I do not know where to begin picking up the pieces, salvaging what is left, or making sense of my confusion. I doubt very, very much that I have got the strength and know I have no choice regardless.
Please think of me  through these next awful weeks and I will try my very best to be here as often as grief allows me to dabble in the articles of trifling, precious value that have until now, always shored me against ruin.
I love you.x


  1. Debbie says:

    Oh, no. I have been reading here almost from the start, and have been so thrilled for you. Sending you much love xx

  2. Carlie says:

    Oh Alison! I am so very, very sorry! What a heartbreaking turn of events. I tear up just reading about your walk to the bin with your arms full of dreams. Please know that you are surrounded with love and support. It is always darkest before the dawn.

  3. Helena says:

    Oh no…I'm so, so sorry to hear this.

  4. Gill says:

    Oh my dear Alison, my heart is full of sorrow for you all.

  5. Heather says:

    Oh, Alison. I am so sorry. Don't doubt your feelings. Go forward with what you believe is best for you and Finn. It is so much braver for you to say "no" to something you know is not right at this time, than it would be for you to just go along with things and hope that you will be happy later. I feel for your pain. Go hug your boy and feel the energy of his love for you. It will help. I'm so so sorry.

  6. dangermom says:

    I'm so sorry! Heather is right, it's better to say 'no' now, but I know what cold comfort that is. We love you and are thinking of you.

  7. Wendy says:

    Oh, Alison.I wish there were magic words to make it all better.But, the only ones I have are these: Trust yourself. I wish you all the best.

  8. Mimi says:

    Oh my poor dear sweet Alison. I am thinking of you more than you know. Anything you need at all, just say the word. There is nothing to say that will make it better, but hopefully knowing you are in so many hearts will at least make it a little bit less worse. xxx

  9. Gena says:

    No! I cant believe this! Oh Alison! my poor Darling! I dont know what to say to you,other than you know where I am if you need to talk,I know you must have a very good reason to do this xxx

  10. Valerie says:

    Thinking of you…

  11. Barbara says:

    Held close in thought and blog friendship.

  12. Oh dear.
    My heart aches for you and your little guy. Sending you prayers of peace and strength. (((Hug)))

  13. Donna Rigby says:

    Thinking of you…… xx

  14. Claire says:

    Sending so much love and hope.
    Many blessings to you all.

  15. Heidi says:

    Alison, I am so sorry. Sending love to you and Finn.

  16. LissyLou says:

    I am so so sorry to hear this. Sending love to you and your dear boy xx

  17. Rachael says:

    my heart goes out to you, warm hugs to you from afar – Rachaelxo

  18. I am so sorry. May you find moments of comfort and calm, and take things one day at a time.

  19. gill says:

    So sorry to hear your news, but you're doing the right thing if you have any doubts. Take a day at a time, you'll get through this. Hugs x

  20. Victoria says:

    Alison, so sorry to hear this and I can only echo everyone else's comments that you must do what's best and we are all here in the bloggy universe sending you as many virtual hugs as you need,
    Love and Hugs,
    Victoria xxx

  21. Tracelaine says:

    Alison, I am very sorry to hear of your falling out. Some things seem awfully insignificant in times of darkness, don't they? I remember feeling deep pain from a similar loss. No one could say anything that made it any easier for me. Time is the best salve.

  22. Sandi Moran says:

    I am so sad for you. I have been treasuring your happinesses so much during this (for me) awful year. Trust me, sometimes we must do the things we think we cannot do. And we do get through it. Even when we are sure we cannot. Thinking of you every day. Sandi

  23. Wendy says:

    I will hold you up in our thoughts and prayers as you go through this most difficult time. We are here for you to rant and rave. To pass the proverbial tissue. To give you support in all that you need to do that is best for you and Finn, even though some of us are sooo far away! I wish you courage to continue to heal. I am saddened to hear this news, but also know that you will have to persevere, not just for Finn, but because you are Alison May. And that is what you do. Peace and blessings in the days to come.

  24. Sally Hackney says:

    Dear, dear Alison, from many miles away I whisper your sweet names to Him tonight in my prayers. My heart is breaking for you. Take care of yourself. Love, Sally

  25. Alexandra says:

    Awww Alison I am filled with sadness for you. I'm thinking of you and praying for you during this time. Love x

  26. Pam W says:

    Don't doubt your own strength, Alison-we have seen it the generous glimpses you have given us of your life, in your incredible writing-you are one absolutely fantastic person, and please believe that you will smile again-maybe through tears, maybe only for a brief moment, but you will. Hang in there-sending love and hugs.

  27. Jane says:

    I learned a lot from you and I have to say that I am sad for you too. I do believe that we should have trust, sometimes we must do the things we think we cannot do. Even when we are sure we cannot. Thinking of you every day.

  28. Tania says:

    Dear Alison, I am so very very sorry to read your post. My thoughts are with you and I hope that at sometime these dark days will become a little lighter that your future shines even more brightly. Take care and I send you my very best wishes

  29. megan says:

    Oh Alison I am so sorry to hear this.
    Take care and be gentle with yourself, we will always be here.
    Megan xx

  30. melissa says:

    This post makes my eyes fill up with tears for you….truly. Please know that I'm holding you close in my heart just now. So sad. I am SO sorry. With love to you, sweetheart.

  31. Anna Marie says:

    My heart just aches for you. I'm really sorry. You and Richard were very happy and he loves your son….I can't imagine what must have happened to destroy this.

  32. Hausfrau says:

    I'm so terribly sorry, Alison. Don't doubt your strength to get through this, but make sure you also take time to grieve. Please take care of yourself. Sending virtual hugs your and Finn's direction!

  33. Rosemary London says:

    Dear Alison I'm so sorry to hear about the wedding,it must be so difficult to come to terms with.My thoughts are with you xxx

  34. Anna says:

    Oh dear, I am so sorry. Wish there was comfort we could send your way. Hang on til it gets better . . . .

  35. Carol M says:

    Alison, I am so sorry to hear this. I know how heartbreaking your decision must have been. I hope you can find some comfort in the fact that so many of us are sending our love your way. I don't know you, but feel like I do. My take on you is that you are stronger than you realize — think of what you have gone through these past years. It must hurt dreadfully now, but you will find your strength within yourself and in your son, your family and your words. Take time to do what you need to heal your heart.

  36. Lorelei says:

    Sorry sorry Alison. Please take care of yourself and Finn.

  37. Sasha says:

    Oh Alison, I am truly sorry for your heartbreak and sadness. It is true, 'piffle' doesn't matter in the grande scheme of things, and that clarity of realisation is what clears the decks of our minds and will allow you to focus on the matter at hand right now.
    You ARE very brave to have made such a decision (braver than most in fact) and will have very good reasons I am certain, and it proves you are strong enough – have faith in yourself and the inner voice you know knows your heart of hearts. Cling onto the mundane of the every day until bit by bit you can exhale.
    My love and best wishes for you and Fin xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  38. lazy h says:

    Oh Alison I am SO sad to read this. I echo Sasha's post, written so much more eloquently than I could have done. Do not doubt, though, that you have the strength, because you do, and you have a loving family and many friends to support you when you need it. My best wishes and hugs to you and Finn and Richard.

  39. Jenny says:

    Well that just sucks. Take care of yourself and Finn and know that there's a whole bunch of people who love and support you no matter what.

  40. I just stumbled across your blog from another and had to stop to say hi and that I hope you manage to work your way through the huge upset you're dealing with.

  41. Lesley says:

    Oh sweetheart! I am so very, very sorry for you. Take your time love and always remember there are many on here who are here for you. Lots of love, Lesley xx

  42. Amanda says:

    Alison, I've only just gotten to "know"you but my heart breaks for you. I'm sure you've given this much thought and consideration and must do what's best for you and Finn. I have been blessed with a 35 yr. marriage and we were sweethearts from our teens so I really have no idea the depths of your heartbreak. I only know that if 2 people truly love each other as you say you do, are you sure this problem isn't something that can't be worked through? I don't mean to belittle your issue and I am aware that I have no clue what's going on, but I pray that you have turned every corner inside out to find another solution. I'm so sorry for the trials you are going through and I, too, am here to support you but I know that doesn't keep you warm at night and hold your hand along the way. My prayers are with you all and I hope the sun shines again soon. xxooxx

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