I was never sure what love is, for love is experienced differently.
But I have a slight idea of what love isn’t, and as far as I’m concerned, the way I loved you was wrong.
I loved you with jealousy, sadness and madness. I was attached to you like a kid attached to his toys.
I loved you in all the wrong ways.
The fear of losing you overcame the power of love and so my fear won me over. In hindsight I am convinced that when we love others with the fear of losing them, we eventually lose them.
This fear of mine exhausted me, and you.
It drained me.
It drained you.
This is when I figured out that in order to start loving you right, I had to lose you.
I had to sacrifice you for true love. Sadly, every now and then we are blinded by ignorance and we can never truly love unless we completely detach from the other person. I could never detach from you when I was with you.
I hesitantly cut the cords that joined our hearts. I cut them knowing you’ll never understand the reason, but deep inside, my sole motivation was to love you in all the right ways—and to find the “me” I had lost.
My motivation was to make me and you suffer less. I’d rather see us as happy separate individuals than see us together as a miserable couple.
Thankfully, I have succeeded.
It is because I let you go, that I have learned how to love you and it didn’t take long for me to learn to love myself too.
We usually look for love outside ourselves, oblivious to the fact that it only starts within. Aimlessly, I kept searching for love within you, failing to understand that it was within me.
Only if I loved myself, I wouldn’t have gone through so much suffering.
Unfortunately, it’s the other way round: we have to suffer so we can start loving ourselves.
It is then that we learn that the strongest love we can ever give is to the person standing in the mirror before us. Any other love is temporary and seldom genuine.
Now that I love myself, I don’t wish to own you anymore. I’m loving you with freedom, joy and peace. You are not for me and you never were—and you’re not for anyone else either. I just want you to be happy. It doesn’t matter if it’s with me, or another who is bringing you gratification.
It is the gratification that matters—not the person who is generating it.
Loving myself has also allowed me to refrain from blaming you for my misery. I have realized that my misery is my own responsibility. If I had truly loved myself I would have left when I was supposed to—I wouldn’t have stuck around and blamed you for my agony.
I no longer expect anything from you and this is the most powerful result from learning to love myself. I have dropped all expectations and beautifully enough, I set myself free during the process.
Frankly, I cursed the day I met you. But now, I have a better understanding of the reason why our paths crossed.
Meeting you has taught me that love isn’t bound to relationships—it is quite bigger than any labels.
As a result, I have learned that letting someone go doesn’t necessarily mean you must stop loving them. In fact, letting them go is sometimes the beginning of true love.
Through you, I learned to love me. If I hadn’t lost myself in our story, I wouldn’t have opted to write a new one that doesn’t include you.
I have learned that the most beautiful stories are written with our pens that have shed blood for years and mine haven’t stopped dripping ever since I met you.
I love you for thanks to you I am writing my story now.
I love you because you are freely writing your own story too.
May we read them together one day.
Author: Elyane Youssef
Editor: Caitlin Oriel