Being Aston

Some people have a defining moment in their life I guess, when something suddenly 'pings' in their head - like seeing a miracle, or 'meeting' Elvis; when Del and Rodney find out the value of THAT timepiece - something so powerful it causes them to veer off their road to nowhere, and onto a better path altogether.

For me it was meeting this guy who supported Leyton Orient in Feb 2011. (And oh, how I joked about them being the worst football team in London.)

I look at a picture of you I took that night, and I think - yep, that's it. Moment I found the other half of myself when I didn't even know half of me was missing. Coming out of a darkness and finding light in a place where I never knew light could shine.

When I was really young, I had this jigsaw; there were about 20 pieces. I loved that jigsaw. I can see it now. It was a pink jigsaw with a kind of fantasy creature - like a glowing fairy cat surrounded by intricate vines and flowers; the face was beautiful, it had eyes like dark pools. I would carry it around with me in a straw basket that had embroidered flowers on the front.

But there was this one time when my father was rushing me and I was down the bottom of my Nan's garden doing this jigsaw and I had to really quickly collect up the pieces because he was getting annoyed. And when I got home there were some missing.

I asked my Nan and Grandad over and over. And I never found them. And I never saw the pink cat's face again because the pieces with one side of the face were missing. And that's always stayed with me. In the back of my mind, even though at the forefront I'd forgotten it. And I couldn't even remember the cat's face. And it cracked my heart because I had loved to put the pieces together and see the face because I thought it was beautiful.

And when I met you, it was like finding the pieces again. Even though I had forgotten them for all that time. And I saw that face again that I had loved so much.

And I had this Aston moment - like I had laid everything out in order and finally everything made sense. And I knew exactly what was mine.

And now I can build my shed.

31st July 2014