You F*cked Me Up, But I’m Better For It

Flickr / Ian T. McFarland
Flickr / Ian T. McFarland

Like most humans, I’ve been subject to the pangs of losing my first love. When you left, and left for good, I felt like half a person. I’ve read enough blogs about love to know that that being in love with someone does not mean they are required to make you feel whole. I know it shouldn’t have been that all-consuming kind of thing. I knew better; I was warned. But you made me feel invincible. And so there I was, heartbroken, lonely and stuck in a place where everything reminded me of you. There were little reminders of our time together at every corner and I just couldn’t avoid thinking about you if I tried.

To put it lightly, I was fucked up.

I’m not sure what did it. I don’t think it was when you dumped me. It might’ve been when you dumped me but told me you still wanted to talk to me. You said you wanted to talk to me, but there I was, talking to you, only to be completely ignored in return. Maybe it was when you told me you were “talking to someone,” then texted me the next day about how much you were in love with me. Maybe it was that time you were in town for the weekend and refused to see me—until it was 2AM and you were drunk and needed a ride. Maybe it was every time you said the phrase, “I just can’t be with you,,,right now.” Maybe it was when I missed you so much it hurt, when I couldn’t bring myself to eat because of the awful things you said of me. I’m not sure.

There’s usually not an exact pinpoint location on the timeline of shitty things that have happened where you pass the point of “staying afloat’ and sink/drown in the ocean of fucked-up-ness. But, after too much time spent crumpled in bed, losing about 15 pounds (and any semblance of self-esteem), crying in my car during unexpected bouts of sadness, and anxiously awaiting your terse or insulting texts, I guess I knew. I was once a fiercely independent girl who now felt validated if her ex-boyfriend acknowledged her and felt paralyzed at the thought of being alone or unwanted. The shell of a person I became had sunk far below.

When you stopped contacting me altogether, I no longer had any ties with you to bring me back to the surface. It was up to me to get myself back. I had become someone completely unrecognizable and stopped doing the things that made me happy. I was being held captive by my misery and saw all my potential being thrown away. I was dormant. But the world didn’t stop moving, so I eventually was forced to adjust to life without you—I spent time with old friends, started working out, focused on my schoolwork, and kept myself busy to fill up the vast emptiness I felt after our breakup.

I wish I could simply say “thank you” for this, that heartache was retrospectively the best thing to happen to me, but I’m not quite there yet. Mostly it’s because I would probably never wish what I went through on anyone. I felt like I lost my identity when you left, but the truth is, I didn’t lose myself in a sea of fuckery post-breakup, I lost myself in you, in the all-consuming quality of our relationship. I still think about you, and yes, I am still holding out for us even if I probably shouldn’t, but nearly four months later, I stopped crying every day, I have no problem getting out of bed in the morning, I’m healthy, and I have so much motivation to do things for myself and all by myself. I may have lost you, but I was able to reclaim myself and all the hidden parts that got tangled up in you.

I miss you very much, but I’ve missed myself more. TC mark

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