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June 3, 2019

We Broke Up—but You will Always be my Soul Mate.

 

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Dear “One,”

What shall I call you now, some years later?

Everyone calls you by your name, but I am not everyone. Your friends call you by your nickname, but I still can’t be just a friend—I’ll always be more than that.

I used to call you by a name, specially made up for you, but I guess that one expired when our moment was gone and our past selves moved on. Therefore, the last time we talked, I just skipped the whole greeting part and started right away with “How are you?” followed by a question mark. And you replied with “Hey,” followed by a smiley, and I guess that you also didn’t know what else to say. And yeah, I am pretty sure that you still remember my name.

I was always scared that you and I would become strangers one day because you know what they say: this is what happens to lovers after they choose the path of walking away. But we were always different, weren’t we?

Weeks before you broke up with me, I had a thought. It said, “Something must happen for me to grow.” I didn’t intend to think that; it came from deep in my soul. I never said a word, tried to forget the thought, while the universe arranged itself new to make my wish come true, and you, without knowing, were involved in the plan, too. The last thing I would have wished for was the end of our relationship. Actually, neither of us was expecting it.

What everyone forgets when it comes to a breakup is that it is hard for both people. I am talking about relationships like ours, where true love was involved. And yet, people will always tell us that love can get through anything. But the truth is that sometimes there are issues that can’t be solved.

In our case, the most loving and caring move we could ever make was to let each other go. Because soul mates know each other’s soul, they always want the best for one another, and sometimes that means leaving space to grow. And even the most loving gesture hurt both of us; this was when not only one but two hearts got broken. While you broke my heart in the gentlest way and your hands were busy catching each part, yours broke too. And today, I feel sorry that I couldn’t help to rescue your heart, for I myself was too busy falling apart.

Up to this point, I thought that someday there would be nothing left to say, but it’s not true. Who are we to forget our yesterdays? We wouldn’t be at this exact point in the present moment without our past. It will always be the reason why our future will be whatever it will be. Who are we to talk about our past as if it doesn’t matter anymore? It mattered, and the waves that came with it still matter. It is time to change our view; we should say to the ones who tell us the past is only there to forget that we honour it instead. When I am happy in the here and now, you can be proud that you had a huge impact on my present situation, somehow.

I struggled a lot after the breakup. I struggled for almost a year, really bad. The pain I felt had such power that I wasn’t only hurting on an emotional level. My physical body showed real symptoms—it was inflamed and sore from it all. Doctors couldn’t help me, of course. Medicine wasn’t what I needed. I needed to feel and accept the pain, to allow it to be there for as long as necessary in order to grow.

What I didn’t know back then, but what I know today, is that I couldn’t grow without the pain. That with all the suffering, in the end, I only gained more strength.

I learned a lot from this experience. But I also made a huge mistake later on, not on purpose, just unconsciously. You know that we always tend to give higher value to our last experience about something, right? Our relationship—all those years were truly wonderful. But the breakup as the final piece of it made me suffer unbelievably, even though we ended things in the most beautiful way possible.

I realised some months ago that when people asked me about my past, I would tell them that I was in a relationship with the love of my life, but we broke up, and I had a really tough time. I always talked about how much I struggled after that.

Why do we talk about the negative things? Why do we talk about the suffering part? In which way does this help us? It doesn’t. I survived it, so who the f*ck cares anymore? As soon as I realised this was wrong, I changed it.

Why don’t I talk about how strong I was to get through something when I never thought I would make it? And that the lesson was that life only gives us things we know we can cope with. Why don’t I tell people what an amazing person you are and tell them how much we laughed together? Why don’t I tell everyone about my favourite parts, all the beautiful memories that we created?

So that is what I did.

From that moment on, instead of telling people I had lost what I once had, I tell them I am so grateful that the love of my life and I already met. And that those years we spent together were the best times I ever had. Who are we to only value a lifetime together, when just a single moment with the right one is worth way more than “forever” could describe?

There’s one more thing: sometimes you will hear people say that after two lovers separate, zero love and care remain. Let me tell you that the love and care for you are still and will always be the same. Once you truly love someone, it cannot be undone. And the fact that you and I still treat each other with deep respect refutes the theory that after a breakup, nothing is left. I know that I’ll always have your back, as you’ll always have mine. So no matter what they say, we’ll be just fine.

Let me put it like this: The more pain we felt, the more beautiful it was, I guess. And it doesn’t matter how many years are passing by; I always keep wishing you happiness and the very best. And after we said our sad goodbye, the next time we see us, I’m sure it will be a delightful “Hi.”

The least I can do is thank you. I will thank you for the rest of my life. Thank you for breaking my heart with respect. Today, I am grateful for that. Now I understand how necessary this decision was.

Looking back on how something beautiful ended in such a good way and how everything else in the past years turned out, we can both still be proud of each other. Genuinely caring for one another years after our paths diverged says a lot about how strong our relationship was. Both of us moved on—and where we are right now is where we belong.

Sometimes, you may be my soul stranger. In the moment of our breakup, you were my soul saver. And, for as long as “forever” will take, you will always be my soul mate.

Soul mates will always be soul mates, but at the same time, they can pretend to be strangers for a while, if necessary.

We both know that we are not strangers and we won’t ever be, but sometimes to pretend for a while makes it easier to go on with life. The life I thought I couldn’t live without you.

But I can; I am still breathing, and my heart is still beating.

~

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author: Janine Friedrich

Image: 500 Days of Summer (2009)

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