*Warning: naughty language ahead!
As I sit here and write to you, the beautiful reader out there, I write from the bustling city of Madrid.
It’s the buildup to Christmas here, and I’m at the heart of Madrid’s consumerism destination: Gran Via.
The Christmas lights are up, and I’m (of all places, don’t judge) sitting at a busy Starbucks tapping away on my laptop whilst others read, converse with friends, and also tap away on their electronic devices.
The reason I’m here and alone is heartache. That aching pain, literally in your heart, that tells you that life has lost its colour. I compare heartache to going from watching a movie in full colour to the drabness of black and white.
Today I actually feel strong and as if I’m coming out on the other side, but weeks ago I couldn’t talk about “him” without crying and getting overwhelmed emotionally. I was resisting letting go and it was that that was causing me the most amount of pain.
So, what’s it like to tell someone whom you once loved that you no longer love them? What’s it like to be on the receiving end of that? And what becomes of the brokenhearted?
My first and purest love was back when I was 16. I met him at work and, you’re not going to believe this, but his surname was “Love.” I’ll never forget the time we checked into a London hotel for Valentine’s Day and we told the receptionist that we had a reservation under the name “Love.”
It was such an innocent love, and I’m so grateful that I got to experience that, as I would have never felt that it was possible otherwise. Sadly, I believe that I met him too young. I wasn’t ready for an adult relationship, commitment, and to be a serious adult. It was only when my father died and my world got shaken up that the truth became known to me.
I spent days, weeks, months, and possibly even a year building up to breaking up with him. We lived together and our lives were so heavily integrated that it just didn’t seem possible. I would like to add that I loved him but I just wasn’t in love with him anymore.
Breaking his heart was (and still is) one of the hardest things in my life that I’ve ever had to do. In the end, I had to be harsh. I had to look him in the eyes and say, “I don’t love you anymore.” I had to remove all hope from him, as I knew there was none and I needed to rip that Band-Aid off.
I had tried to find ways to keep us alive, but in the end I knew I had to leave. It broke him and continued to do so for a long while after (so I heard), but I knew in my heart of hearts it was the right thing to do.
I never did find out what happened to him. Well, the last I heard was that he was married with children. Yes, that hurt—but why should it, you ask? I guess because when I found that out, I’d had a string of unsuccessful and unhealthy relationships behind me. I was, at that moment in my life, ready for Mr. Love. However, a part of me was also happy for him, as he deserved that; he was an amazing human being and I feel blessed that I had him in my life.
Maybe after Mr. Love, I sought unavailable men because I never wanted to experience hurting another human being again. Maybe I didn’t trust myself not to hurt someone or maybe it’s my lack of self-worth. Who knows, but what I do know is that it’s crushing when somebody you’re in love with no longer loves you.
I needed my closure, the same closure that I had given all of those years ago. I needed all hope to be taken away, I needed to burn every single fucking bridge because I needed to move on—but it hurt like a motherfucker. I wanted to meet him in person, but instead he called me.
“Are you still in love with me?” I asked. There was this crushing silence on the end of the line, hesitation, then he scrambled to find words. Of course there weren’t any; the silence said it all. How could he love me two weeks ago and not now? What had changed? Why? It still wasn’t closure, but the door was now shut. There’s absolutely nowhere to go when the other person has fallen out of love with you or they never loved you in the first place.
What becomes of the brokenhearted? Well, the annoying truth is that it’s similar to when your struck down with an illness, medical condition, or injury; there’s fuck all that you can do but sit there and let the healing commence. The more you try to hurry up the healing, the further away it is.
Yielding is the word that springs to mind, but burn every bridge. My last words I said to “him” were, “Unless you still have feelings for me or see a future with me, then leave me the fuck alone.” It hurt saying that, as having him there was still a comfort. There was always a chance (in my head) maybe time would change things for us.
That is bull-fucking-shit.
“Him” leaving me alone has shown me that there was never a bridge to burn. It’s over.
Remove them off your social media and phone. Remove that temptation to contact them. I’ve listened to two podcasts regarding heartache, and they’ve helped immensely to put things into perspective. One was a TED talk; listening to the speaker talk about heartache comforted me a lot.
You see, when we lose a loved one, we go through what heroin addicts go through. We try desperately to find a way to shoot up again because we’re so in need of our fix of that person that all rationale goes out of the window. We don’t even know why we want them back sometimes, we just know that we want them.
The reality is, it cannot have been so fucking amazing if it ended. Even if you didn’t pull the plug, you have to be honest with yourself and do this: write down every reason why they actually aren’t that great for you. Dig deep, ’cause you’ll find reasons.
Another podcast was from the lovable Russell Brand, and he talks about 30 days. Take 30 days to remove them out of your life completely. Don’t ask about them. Detox from them completely. I guarantee at the end of that time, you will have clarity and realise that actually, whilst it still may hurt, it’s over for a good reason. The love that is for you will never pass you by.
There have been times when even after that month, I’ve still missed somebody. But time is a healer.
What becomes of the brokenhearted? We write, we share our pain, we practise compassion toward others, we delve into whatever the fuck it was that was missing within us that made us feel that we needed that person in our life.
I realise now that he gave me safety, comfort, security, hope, and a connection, a sense of family, as that’s what had been missing within me. However, now I need to find ways in which I can cultivate that from deep within me.
I never want to be with somebody because I am missing something so fundamental within me. I want to be with someone because they add something to my already fucking amazing life.
Meditation (loving kindness).
Cosy nights in.
These are all helping me no longer stay in the identity of “brokenhearted.”
The love that is for you will never pass you by—and if it does, it was never meant for you.