“This one goes out to the one I loved. This one goes out to the one I left behind.” ~ REM.
How we came to this point in our relationship is beyond my understanding.
How did our amazing dynamics turn sour?
What kind of karmic convolution could cause two peaceful, kind-hearted individuals to express so much anger?
Why were there so many hurtful words and actions on both our parts?
When did the innocence we shared become tainted with baggage, pain and toxicity from our pasts?
It has taken me so long to understand my own part in it. Without judgment, blaming or shaming. And as I have forgiven myself for being not-right, compassion has awoken within me.
You gave your best, showed up authentically. I didn’t appreciate the gifts offered. I fell short, betrayed trust, did not communicate my love frequently enough, was a poor listener.
I am a fallible human and made human errors. I couldn’t be unconditionally loving, as was asked of me time and again.
We are both amazing humans, full of vitality, life, love and talent. We are wired differently. How we interact in the world, with community, family, the internet and everything is simply unique to each of us.
As the artist formerly known as Prince said,
“Maybe I’m just too demanding
Maybe I’m just like my father too bold
Maybe you’re just like my mother
She’s never satisfied (She’s never satisfied)
Why do we scream at each other
This is what it sounds like
When doves cry.”
The experiences of childhood are a strong influence on personality. And though we were raised in different types of homes and environments, our parents and upbringing are blameless. After all, we are adults and have free-will.
What did we do with that free-will? Build one another up, and tear each other down.
When I would do yet another hurtful thing, I began to fall apart.
I never knew what would trigger that pain response. I stopped acting. I shut down out of fear. My vitality disappeared. My emotional health diminished. I felt so much stress that I was experiencing chest pains.
I couldn’t be any stronger than I was.
I was raised to try everything to create a healthy relationship. Our dynamic brought me to a state of hopelessness and despair. I felt weak, as if nothing I could do was right or enough.
It’s my belief that lasting relationships are a little easier than ours was.
There was a crack in the foundation we were building our life upon.
I did my best to listen, adjust, and serve with all my heart, being and soul. I stopped talking with the people that triggered fear. I stayed home rather than developing social networks.
I have never cheated on you, or anyone in my entire life. I am a loyal and faithful person, and somewhere things were misconstrued that led you to believe otherwise. I became defensive in communicating, I became angry and frustrated at not being understood or seen.
I missed the mark.
When I stopped talking with my family and closest friends, I knew something within me was seriously off-balance. I had lost my center and way. I became depressed.
I am certain that there is no logical reason or rationalization to explain what really happened. It was one too many fights, one too many accusations, one too many angry words, one too many misunderstandings.
Just like musical notes that harmonize, we encountered some disharmonic chords and the vibration shredded our peace and trust.
One too many tears and my heart eventually broke completely.
It had been pointed out, I am broken. I have been broken for a very long time, since my first love cheated on me. This wound was hidden to me until we met. Then all my rage, poison, toxicity blossomed. It was horrendous for me to witness the ugliness inside my own self and its impact on the people in my life, most of all the woman I love.
To witness how my rage brought devastation only affirmed the words screamed in hurt, I am broken.
That statement still echoes inside my spirit.
It has made me really stop and look at who I am.
I have been incomplete. I had strayed from the ethical path. I am a fallen angel, and struggle to even love myself.
If I am unable to love who I am, it is an unfair expectation that anyone else could.
I understand the anger. I shared our private life with friends. It was my error to try and understand our dynamic by seeking counsel. I did not understand the sacredness of privacy. With others, I had become accustomed to being discarded, discounted, and abandoned.
I am sorry for seeing through the filters of my past experiences, instead of with purity and clarity.
I understand why you believe I was shaming you, blaming you, judging you. That is not what I was intending to communicate. Somewhere, I fell short. I never meant to be unkind, unappreciative, or unloving.
In your presence, I opened up to depths of life long forgotten. I will always cherish this time we shared. Now I know what it means to be a family. I know what it is to have a sexual equal. Our sensuality awakened a depth of intimacy beyond imagination. The passion we shared still walks in my dreams.
Leaving rended my soul.
It was the hardest choice of my life. I love you. And to leave was the only option. One of us had to act. It was an act of love to walk away. And that I truly believe that reveals again how broken my heart is.
What kind of person leaves their beloved? What kind of person expresses hatred at their one and only? Who hangs on to hurtful words and builds resentment? I imagined myself a better person, and I’m not.
Having experienced death so closely so many times in recent years, the urgency of time presses on me. I remember our positive and know that I am lacking. I believe we deserve the best life has to offer. And we were falling short.
There is no time to play games and dwell on drama.
I am unable to meet the needs of anyone, let alone show up for a family. I am only able to be myself, and not an imaginary person who can handle everything.
I don’t feel worthy of receiving love.
Because I am such a trigger and bring so much pain, the only remaining option was to trust in us that much further.
I have faith, belief and so much respect for you. I am unable to understand why there was so much screaming, rage and drama. My mind, heart and soul remain baffled and can find no reason in such behavior. I’ve never fought so intensely or frequently with anyone in my entire life. Even the peaceful times left me anxious, wondering when our emotional volcanoes would again erupt.
Before knowing one another, we have lived this life thus far with such tremendous success. Talented, wise, devoted, intelligent and an amazing mother; all of your traits are what I have prayed for in my wife. It is why I had asked you to marry me.
And I know you are perplexed why I ended our engagement, why I have left and stay gone.
It is the only way I know to love you. To stay gone. To let life move on. To trust in us, the creator, life and the universe. My efforts are not enough.
I have chosen to focus on myself and healing rather than go down a path of fighting, anger and aggression. I’ve never fought with anyone so much in my entire life. It makes no sense to me. The words of one of our last fights still echo through me, “I am broken.”
I choose to be single and alone than to live like that and destroy the life of anyone.
This is a very selfish act on my part. A mutual someone-we-know so helpfully expressed that I am a narcissist. I wish I’d been a better listener, your efforts were genuine and perspective about people eerily accurate.
Please understand that I am not unconditionally loving. I am a fallible human, I hold resentments, I carry baggage. I do my best with what has been given to me. And when it comes to intimacy, emotional expression and relationships I have more failures in my life than successes.
I gave my all, and found myself empty. Once again, failure.
I am filled with gratitude, compassion, love and agony for our time together.
I’ve learned that relationships are the hardest experience in life. And also the most rewarding.
I believe that first and foremost one needs to be able to simply be oneself, to be fully authentic and natural. Somewhere, I strayed from the path and became lost. I’m sorry for not understanding this earlier, for causing such a mess.
I wish for us both to simply have a good life, to be at peace, to be whole, to know the fulness of love.
Experience and observation demonstrate that we have a good life and extra’s that taint the positive.
If I could see a path other than the one beneath my feet, I would walk it.
Thank you for loving me, embracing me, and for all of who you are.
Perhaps one day when I do not feel sorry for being who I am, for being broken, our paths will again cross.
Know that I am always grateful for the gifts you have brought to my life.
Go with peace.
I love you.
Love elephant and want to go steady?
Editor: Emily Bartran
Photo: Sean McGrath/Flickr