Let yourself cry. You’re going to feel like the world is crashing down and everything you believed is going with it. You’re going to doubt your ability to love and be loved, and in the worst moments, you’ll pick apart everything that makes you so uniquely you. Go ahead. Do it. Fall to your knees and sob for what is lost.
And when the tears dry, because eventually they will, stand back up. If your legs feel too wobbly, lean on something sturdy. You don’t have to do this all at once. You’re allowed to take baby steps.
Seek comfort in friends and family. Hug someone who feels like home and warmth. Remember that love does not only exist in the romantic form. It’s constantly surrounding us. If you lose one ray of love, bask in the glow from all the others. They still exist. They’re still around you.
Listen to sad songs. Listen to angsty break up anthems. Listen to something that makes you want to dance and forget anyone ever broke your heart.
Write in a journal. Rip out the pages and burn them in a fireplace. Watch the flames engulf your heartache. Watch it slowly die out.
Stay busy. Go out with your friends and try to keep your body in motion. Go on hikes or hit the gym. Take a Zumba class or one of those cool acrobatic yoga ones. Make yourself sweat and fall back into rhythm with your own breath.
Reread your favorite books. Watch all your favorite movies. Invite the people you care about over and eat so much popcorn, you Violet Beauregarde it and become an actual kernel. Laugh and laugh, and laugh until you become human shaped again.
Notice someone cute looking at you. Brush it aside and assume they’re not actually looking at you. Catch their eye again and feel your cheeks blushing. Your heart can still get flutters. It’s the gentlest reminder.
See your ex on social media and want to cry again. Maybe you do. Maybe you don’t. No matter what, you survive. The sun comes up and you stop caring about checking up.
Meet someone new and feel yourself momentarily hold back. Decide it’s worth it. Decide your first love was still worth the eventual heartbreak.
Let yourself fall all over again.