Be in denial. Tell everyone that you are totally over it and better off anyway. Party really, really hard for many days in a row. Feel proud of yourself in the mornings when you check your phone and confirm you did not drunk dial or text. Brush off the fleeting memory of your friend repeatedly taking away your cell phone from you as a drunken hallucination. Become a gym rat by day, happy hour junkie by evening and alcoholic by night. Tell everyone you have a firm grip on things when they check in, and boast about how you’re just too busy to really be sad.
Have it all be okay until one of your friends mentions over dinner that they saw your ex canoodling with someone at a restaurant last week. Pretend to not be phased. Ask if they thought it was a date and have them confirm. “Totally. They were all over each other.” Shrug, and order four rounds of tequila shots before you get your check. Get home and crack open the emergency bottle of vodka from the freezer, and blast Celine Dion’s “My Heart Will Go On” on repeat. Have your roomate walk in on you two hours later, belting the high note while standing on the sofa looking like a wild animal, hair a mess and mascara all over your face. “Dude, are you okay?” You put the music even higher.
Change your routine from gym rat, happy hours, and alcoholism to just alcoholism exclusively for about a week. Send drunk texts, get into a bar fight with a guy who looks vaguely like your ex, try to go on a date but self-sabotage yourself by spewing Alanis Morrisette-eque man-hate the entire time. Have your friends and family hold an intervention. Realize it’s time to get your act together. Get wasted one last night for kicks.
Go back to your real routine: work, friends, family, gym. Come home and feel lonely. Look at old pictures. Really let yourself feel. Start to talk about it with friends. Occasionally stalk the new girlfriend on Facebook. Try to think she’s ugly but admit to yourself that she’s actually kinda cute. Run into the ex and new girlfriend. Go home and resist the alcohol, but allow yourself to cry. Really let it out. Wake up depressed, and feel that pain daily, in varying degrees. Decide you that you’ll just have to live with the pain and that you will never love again.
Wake up months later, and don’t feel that pain anymore. Look at old pictures to confirm the feeling has really gone away.
Realize you have moved on.