It’s moving on that puts our strength and resilience to the test.
It’s endlessly trying to put the past behind us and not carry it with us day after day.
It’s waking up each morning without being greeted by that morning text. It’s going through the day without those calls to check in and say hello. It’s no longer cooking for two. It’s sitting alone on the couch while watching the news. It’s going to sleep without hearing, “I love you.”
It’s tears on our pillow, crying ourselves to sleep, and waking exhausted. It’s restless nights and dreaded days. It’s fighting back the tears and hiding the hurt. It’s putting on a smile when we are numb inside. It’s an acute pain that is sometimes so overwhelming that our chest grows tight, and we feel like we can’t breathe.
It’s remembering how the time together flew so quickly, and now the nights drag on forever. It’s wishing we had met so long ago and now wishing we’d never met at all.
It’s passing through each stage of grief in no particular order, often fluctuating through them all within hours, over and over again. It’s not knowing when we’ll feel better. It’s wondering if we’ll ever get the person off our mind and questioning why we can’t.
It’s denial, anger, and bargaining. It’s depression, then acceptance. It’s love, hate, and indifference. It’s shock and disappointment.
It’s putting every bit of our energy into trying to understand why we hurt so badly when we know the relationship wasn’t healthy for us. It’s knowing that we had to force the breakup because we didn’t have a genuine partner.
It’s facing the fact that he didn’t love us like he said he did. It’s having learned that he wouldn’t be there for us like he said he would. It’s finding out that he would never have afforded us the generosity and care that we gave him so freely. It’s having someone walk away without a fight when we would have walked through fire to make it work.
Then comes a day when we feel it. Clarity. Vision. Peace. There they are. We are acutely aware of their presence. We’re more than feeling good—we’re feeling fabulous. We believe the healing is complete, and we’ve passed the test.
We bask in the feeling, breathing in deeply and exhaling slowly, a smile that comes from the depths of our souls, unconsciously forms at the corner of our lips. We’re filled with gratitude—excited for what the future holds.
That day passes, and tomorrow arrives. The drastic shift in emotions is a jolt to our psyche. And suddenly, we’re back in the grips of hurt, anger, and pain. We see him everywhere. We’re resentful that the dreams we had have been quelled. We question how we could have been so blind.
We wonder what we missed—were we in the same relationship?
Yes, we were, it wasn’t healthy for me, but I truly believed we had more and could work through it all. But my gut poked at me time and time again and turned out to be accurate—as always.
My love for you was authentic. My love for you juggled more stress, tension, and discomfort than I would ever choose. My love for you tolerated every flaw, challenge, and problem that came your way. My love for you was real. Genuine. My commitment to you was for better or worse. But your love for me? Not.
How could you not miss what we shared? How could you not want to run back to me, knowing that what we had can’t be found with another? How is it that I am not accepting what is and still long for some fairy-tale ending where we come together and all differences dissolve, love conquers all, and we ride off into the sunset?
Right now, I can’t accept that the timing was wrong. I can’t accept that you may not have the same kind of love to give that I do. I can’t accept the fact that you’re gone—and never coming back. It doesn’t add up with what you told me. It doesn’t mesh with what we shared. It doesn’t resonate with me that we can’t work through anything—like you said. “I can’t imagine my life without you.” Yet I’m forced to accept the truth—the reality.
Why is it that I still cling to the fantasy of what I thought we were? What we had? What we would be? Why do I still struggle to accept the fact that, for whatever reason, your love for me wasn’t my love for you? That I can’t imagine starting over with another and moving on, though it’s clear that I need to if I choose to live fully.
When will it stop being you? No matter how difficult or challenging is what we would need to conquer to be together—forever.
Breaking up isn’t hard to do. That’s the easy part. But living without you and moving on? There is no getting over someone.
We may learn to move forward, but the victory is in putting that past behind me and opening my heart to what could be.