9.3
Winner
June 3, 2021

A Graceful Goodbye: it’s Time to Let Go.

“If you’re brave enough to say goodbye, life will reward you with a new hello.” ~ Paulo Coelho

~

There was an ending.

It was painful and sad, as endings usually are—but there was what seemed like a mutual love and respect and what would appear now as naivety to keep some sort of friendship.

We continued to speak often in the beginning—I’m not sure why? Perhaps it was hard to let go. Perhaps we still needed something from each other.

Whatever it was, it was confusing and upon reflection not right—given the directions our lives were taking. Given what you were trying to achieve. I’m worth far more than being someone’s option.

Slowly, this tapered off and it seemed like my grief could not quite get off the roller coaster because whilst the dynamics of our contact and relationship changed, I didn’t know what our connection to each other even was anymore.

You were still making intermittent contact. I would take two steps forward in my life, you would contact me, and I would take one step backward. But I didn’t say anything, and I didn’t stop you, so the blame is equal.

I had given so much of myself to you that your absence devastated me. I look back and wonder how I survived some days, because the darkness engulfed me—it seeped through every part of my being insidiously.

Life happens—I get it. But I would never have caused you a pain so brutal, and I certainly wouldn’t have moved forward in my life in a way that would consistently hurt you, like you did me.

You know exactly what I mean. Whatever the reason you decided to portray your life in the way you did, it no longer matters. What did matter was the ease in which you were able to forget “the love of your life—your person.”

I still wonder through this portrayal of your new life—your bolstered convictions—who were you trying to convince? Me? Everyone? Or yourself? We can try and convince ourselves—we can even lie to ourselves—but the truth is, our eyes never lie, even when our hearts try to.

I spent an insurmountable amount of time analysing the words that were said and wondering about everything that lay unsaid. I don’t do that anymore. I said everything I needed to say from my heart and soul—whether you did or not is not something I need to concern myself with.

You wear many masks. Some may say you are a chameleon—adapting to whatever situation you are in, and that’s okay because that is your journey. My journey, however, is about no masks—it’s about rawness, authenticity, and compassion.

Our paths merged for a moment—a moment filled with love, pain, confusion, beauty, ugliness, hope, unfulfilled promises, and in the end, a glimpse into each other’s soul was to be only a moment, because you were never courageous enough to keep walking the path with me.

I thought there was a sort of closure but there really wasn’t. I’ve come to accept that loose ends are just part of who we are—a part of who you are. It’s not you here talking to me, holding my hand, laughing together, and sharing a life, and that’s okay, because like you said, you wanted me to move on, because I deserved so much better.

And I’ve finally realised I do deserve better—so move on I have, and I open the space for someone to come in who will love me the way I deserve to be loved.

I know exactly how I felt and I never waivered. I never made a promise I could not keep, and I never asked anymore from you than you were able to give. I spoke my truth and was honest with myself. Have you ever admitted the truth to yourself or do the lies still taste sweeter?

We are all artists of our lives, but the sad thing is the masterpiece you have created is seeing only what you want to see. The picture you paint is the one you want the world to see.

You can’t have it both ways. The me I am today has worked too hard on herself and grown too much to accept anything less than she deserves. Maybe I was your drug of choice—your weakness—or maybe you were like a moth to my flame. Whatever it was, it ended and it took me a long time to heal. A long time to move past your words, your silences, your actions, and your broken promises.

So, I now say goodbye. It’s a simple word but something I could not bring myself to do for the longest time. But I realised I cannot fully embrace my next chapter if I still reread the old one. If I want my story to be the one of beauty and wonder, it’s up to me to create it, and that means this part of my story is over.

I can still reflect upon the memories, but it’s time to say goodbye to the past.

I wish you well on your path, and if our paths should somehow cross at anytime, know that my kindness and compassion will still be afforded to you.

And I will not be wearing a mask, so perhaps for that moment, you could remove yours so I may glimpse the real you, look into your eyes one final time, kiss you gently on the cheek, and let my soul bid you goodbye.

A graceful goodbye.

“We started with a simple hello but ended with a complicated goodbye.” ~ Unknown

~

Read 30 Comments and Reply
X

Read 30 comments and reply

Top Contributors Latest

Michelle Schafer  |  Contribution: 17,200

author: Michelle Schafer

Image: Brittani Burns/Unsplash

Editor: Lisa Erickson