1. You can’t make someone love you back.
No matter how hard I tried to show him that I truly loved him and how amazing we could be, it didn’t make him love me or want me. It just left me performing all of these huge, romantic gestures that got me a pat on the back. I couldn’t make him look at me the way I looked at him. When I laid eyes on him when he walked into a room, my heart would beat a mile a minute, and all I would be thinking about is what he was thinking about me. The truth? He wasn’t thinking about me at all. He might have been wondering, “Why is this crazy chick staring at me?” But we can pretty much count on the fact that there were no hidden thoughts of romance behind his blank facial expression.
2. It’s okay to not be okay.
It’s okay to break down and think, “Wow, this really sucks.” It is okay to be sad that he doesn’t love you back. The feeling I got from not being wanted is a feeling so painful it’s hard to even describe. It’s crying on your bedroom floor, because you heard he went on a date with some other girl. It’s ripping up pictures you took with him on what you thought were “dates.” It’s looking in the mirror, and picking apart everything that is wrong with you. Because if he doesn’t want you, it has to be your fault, right? Take it from someone with a lot of experience in this, it is okay to feel down on yourself, but don’t EVER let it make you feel like you’re not good enough. If he ever makes you feel that way, it’s time to RUN, because I can promise you that you don’t want him to be the one.
3. I’m gonna be damn good at loving the right man when he comes along.
The most important thing I learned from loving a man that didn’t love me back was that I have A LOT of love to give. I have the dedication to make a relationship to work no matter the circumstances. I may have wasted two good years on someone who didn’t love me back, but what did I lose? A guy that was incapable of loving me. What did he lose? A girl crazy enough about him to spend two years of her life chasing after him. I think I come out on top in this deal. Now I know that when Mr. Right comes along, he’ll appreciate all the little things I do that show I care. He’ll appreciate all of my little notes. He won’t just throw them away. He’ll laugh at all my silly jokes no matter how stupid they are. He won’t just look me in the eye and tell me that they’re stupid. He’ll know how to break bad news to me in a gentle way, because he’ll actually care that my heart stays intact. He won’t break my heart over text message saying that things will never be the way I want them to be between us. He’ll hold me in his arms when I need him most, but he won’t be the reason I’m curled up crying in the first place.
Honestly, if I saw my first unrequited love right now, I’d thank him. I’d say thank you for showing me exactly what I don’t want in the man of my dreams. I’d thank him for showing me how amazing I am to have hung on for so long. Most importantly, I’d thank him for not loving me back. Because now I can experience my first, REAL love.