Sometimes, love arrives like a fat man cannonballing into water.
The splash is expansive—and the ripples fade out slowly. We sit there, wondering how love could have come and left like this, the pool now empty.
One minute we were there—together, living our lives as one. The next, we were sitting on the couch, talking about how we were going to move forward, handing back each other’s belongings.
This kind of breakup is different. We are sad, yes, and heartbroken. But we know that it had to end, and that we are doing the hard but right thing. This whole time there was something that just wasn’t working.
We were disappointed and frustrated, always. But if we love each other so much, why are we constantly fighting?
There were other things, too—lack of communication, misunderstanding—but most of all, there was incompatibility. It was like we were trying to fit two puzzle pieces together that were the right shape and size but came from different boxes.
No matter how hard he tried, or you communicated, or she apologized over and over and over again—it would never be enough. We gave it so many goes, almost one too many tries, pushed and pushed until the edges of the puzzle pieces began to bend and fray.
There are hateful breakups and cruel breakups and breakups that make us want to lie on our bed for days. But there are these kinds of breakups that are hard in their own way. We look at this person in front of us and wish so badly we could love them for all of them, but we have to accept the fact that we just can’t—at least not in that way.
This kind of breakup is the definition of tragedy. It is senseless. It is: we are trying everything in our power to make it work, but something is just not clicking.
These breakups are tragic, but they can also be wonderful and great.
Wonderful? Great? Yes—because, as they say, by letting each other go, we can set each other free. We can take this experience with us, go off into the world with a little more self-knowledge and understanding.
We have taught each other lessons in love and in life and hope nothing but the best for one another. We are saying: I love who you are as a person, but we’re just not meant to be. We can find acceptance, more easily. We can learn to thank the other person for all they did and all they gave the relationship because it wasn’t for a lack of want or trying.
This kind of love can carry on in other forms. We can stay friends, maybe. And we can give each other so much care as people as we help each other move forward through this pain. Or we can gracefully move out of each other’s lives, always remembering the time we had together—the memories we created, the moments that will live on in photographs of us smiling.
This kind of love is still strong. It is a deep understanding for who we are as people. It does not involve hate, it does not involve regret. It’s about being grateful for this person and all that they brought into our life during this time together. And all that you brought into theirs.
How can we regret something that was so real even if it wasn’t everlasting?
We have come to accept that people come into our lives for many reasons. And though not all of them stay, it doesn’t make the time with them any less meaningful or important.
Sometimes, people come into our lives for a breath of time. And we can look back and say thank you for all that we gave each other.
Thank you for helping us get a little bit closer to becoming who we were always meant to be.