I had a long, arduous break up from my (now ex) boyfriend this year. It was long because for a little while he wouldn’t take no for an answer especially when I dropped hints that I didn’t want him to take no for answer but to instead make a turn around in certain areas clearly shared in my break-up attempts so that we could have a prosperous, happy relationship. I suppose that was manipulation. I was hoping it was providing the opportunity for change. It was an arduous break up for all the same reasons.
It’s now been over a month since we’ve communicated. I miss the guy. I’ve missed the guy every day since I first realized I wanted to break up with him. Sometimes my missing him makes me think about getting in touch with him. I’ve staved this off by simple commitment to follow through. What kind of person am I if I break someone’s heart and then ask for it back to likely break it again or settle for a relationship that is meager in comparison to what I hope for in romance? Still… I miss him.
I remember so many attributes, interests, and desires of his – I guarantee more than he does of mine – and that gives me pain. I’ve seen certain items and realized they would make perfect gifts for this man and then I feel the ache of knowing I can’t give it to him. I think of his future plans and goals and wonder how they fare. I think of all I learned from him being in my life and realize I’m grateful for it. I’m reminded of him every day. The sweetest relief is found for me in moments I forget to remember him or am too distracted to bring the heavy feelings to life. It’s also nice when I get in touch with my anger over his lack of support and love for me. My survival feels dependent on distraction. The great thing is that I realize I’m distracting myself from him by focusing on myself. How wonderful it is to endure the pain of loss when it is congruent to gaining something better – a wonderful fact, not feeling. The better thing I’m gaining is finding a way back to being truly me. At twenty-eight years old – and being a twenty-eight year old who has experienced a lot of life – I’m the loneliest I’ve ever been. This loneliness is a choice I endure with a hopeful expectation that I will reap a reward of strength in contentment in being alone with me.
Social media sites depress me the most in my lonely life. They are a reminder of what I don’t have but see of others: current exciting experiences, a boyfriend, a husband, a child, a puppy, a satisfying career, many boisterous friendships. I posted many a picture of happy times with my boyfriend (that I thought I might marry). I’ve posted many a picture of exciting and fulfilling times in life. I’m not glorying in them now. Now I’m absorbing my loneliness and posting my lonely pictures just to participate in normalcy. Maybe I ought not to try.
Grief, luckily, is unavoidable and returns the kind of guts needed for a strong, unbreakable type of life as long as there’s a willingness to endure its sting. At the moment, the idea of dating another person does not entice me. It sounds painful and hard. My grief is drawing me (ready introvert that I am) into myself. I want to guard against any sort of withdrawal that is too extreme, but I want to endure my lonely grief so that I might be the stronger for it.
My question for this point: what about life isn’t hard?