The thing about healing that people fail to mention is that making the right decision can be just as painful as staying in your toxic behavior.
Walking away from those who no longer serve you isn’t the power move they make it out to be. The reality is sometimes those who no longer serve you are the friends who make you laugh the hardest, or the guy whom you can’t seem to get enough of.
In fact, letting go, more times than not, feels more like grieving a loss rather than stepping into the light. Because no matter how wrong something is for you, it doesn’t take away the comfort of being in a place or with a person who reminds you of home.
I knew there was a familiar pull that drew me to him. All the other boys planned out thoughtful dates and showered me with compliments. The other boys called when they said they would and asked about my day. And they did it all with ease. Yet gravity pulled me toward the one who barely had enough time for himself, let alone a girl he barely knew.
I heard once that if you pay attention, you’ll find out everything you need to know about a person on or before the first date. I’m not sure if that’s entirely true, but still, I learned to pay close attention and not wave away the things that I thought to be a “joke” or not a big deal because often it was those very things that gave me a window into who someone was.
Before meeting him, I knew the word “busy” would be a catalyst in whatever transpired between us. It didn’t seem to be an excuse but rather an indication of what he had to give.
Relationships don’t spring from the seeds of hope. They’re built through intentional actions. Time spent together. Meaningful conversations. Shared laughter. That’s how the physical, mental, and emotional join together to build a sturdy foundation. Otherwise, nothing grows.
You can hope that one day he will make time for you, or that eventually he’ll be someone who asks about your day and learns how to plan meaningful dates. You can hope he will think of you as naturally as you think of him. And you can hope that one day he will want all of you and not just your body at the end of a busy week, but hope will only keep you in a place that isn’t meant for you longer.
As someone who loves to float on hope, it’s not easy to ground yourself in reality. But it’s a lesson I learned the hard way when the universe broke my toe and chained my limbs to the ground so I’d stop flying away to imaginary places where I’d fall in love with the idea of someone and not the reality. And the reality was that he triggered the wounded pieces of me that hadn’t yet scabbed over.
He told me a story about making a deal with the Gods of light and darkness. He said the darkness always takes more. So, I stopped talking to the night sky and, instead, I headed to the ocean to pray to the sun. I carved my heart’s desires into the dampened soil and offered a stone in exchange for love. I turned my head toward the heavens to see a heart-shaped cloud appear above me, letting me know my message had been received.
That’s when my gut pulled at my heart and I thought of him. What if he came from the darkness? I feel its familiar pull whenever I kiss his lips.
Sex used to cloud my mind. I used to think that when someone wanted my body, they wanted all of me. However, it wasn’t lost on me that he was too distracted before and too tired after to really get to know me. It wasn’t lost on me that he never said he missed me or wanted me or that I was all his; all those words were directed between my legs.
I heard once that you choose people who don’t see you because you don’t want to be seen. Maybe part of that is true.
That’s how I know I still have one foot in the dark. I’ve been here before. It’s a place where I can lose myself if I’m not careful. I fear he’ll kiss me and I’ll fade away like the sun yielding to the moon. Still, hope convinces me that we can share the sky and ignite it with a fiery sunset, captivating the earth to stand still.
Is it possible? Maybe in time it could’ve been. But the anxiety courses through my veins as a reminder to keep going. This isn’t a safe space to lean into.
I promised myself to walk away from anything that didn’t fuel my soul. And I’ll keep my f*cking promise, but not without wavering. I’ll hesitate at the door and start to question every word. If I let myself, I’d overthink it all for days. But it’s not my job to convince someone I’m worth it. It’s my job to pay attention and recognize when I deserve more.
There will always be this part of me that wants to stay. Stay and dance in the discomfort of my anxiety. Kiss him until my gut gets silenced by the heat running through my body. Part of me would’ve preferred that he left me. That way, there is no uncertainty or going back—just forward on to calmer waters.
When the choice is mine, doubt tugs at my heart like a tether that will draw me back into his arms. It takes everything I’ve got to turn away, walk away, and trust that there is something better for me.
The universe doesn’t say no. It either says yes, not yet, or I’ve got something better. So, I let go and do a trust fall into the arms of light.