How To Keeping Loving Even After Being Rejected

Victoria Paige
Victoria Paige

I’m just going to start by putting it bluntly:

Relationships are really fucking hard and rejection sucks. It’s a huge blow to the ego and will always create a crack in the cold breakable barriers on your heart. It doesn’t matter how long you were with them or whether or not you were even capable of loving them. None of that matters at all when you are hurting.

A guy recently dumped me 12 days before my birthday. We had only been dating for six weeks and I never really liked him that much anyways. But it still sucked. That was six whole weeks of my free time where I could have been doing something more productive; like watching Netflix or jumping in front of trucks. Knowing that there are six weeks worth of shows I will never binge watch is a devastating loss in and of itself. Add in a rejection through a breakup phone call and my life just became the real-life equivalent of that sad handwritten book from Bridesmaids.

I think the worst part about rejection is knowing that the other person feels content and maybe even happy with never seeing you again. The worst part is knowing that to them you are now just another number. You’re a number they will one day talk about to the person they end up loving and say how grateful they are it didn’t work out with you. They are grateful because it led them to this moment now; where they were meant to be with this new person. And that person will never be you. How do we live with feelings like that? How is it possible to survive knowing people are glad we aren’t in their lives anymore?

We survive through forgiving, and the first step in forgiveness is realizing that the other person is an idiot. The next step is learning to love yourself again.

You are a light house. After many lonely nights, someone finally comes around and decides they want to keep you from standing there alone. They offer to fix your walls when the water gets rough and keep your light shining under the dark sky. But when the air starts to thicken and you forget how to breathe, they turn off your lights and disappear before showing you the way to the door.

The only way back to life is to find it on your own.

So you take the pack of matches from your pocket and open it up to find only one left. The words “Don’t fuck up” echo over and over in your now darkened space. You have one last chance to light yourself up again. Hands shaking, breath stunned, barely hanging on from the highest point ready for some natural disaster to take you away; you drag the match across the grid and bring back the fire in your eyes. You decide that you were worth the fight even though it almost killed you. You decide that you will be worth the fight every single time.

If the life of my light house relied on someone else “seeing” me to stay lit, I would only be alive for about two weeks out of every year. If it relied on someone else loving me to shine over the ocean, I wouldn’t stand long enough to guide someone home.

So when my birthday rolls around 12 days post-breakup; I won’t be waiting at my door for someone to bring me flowers. I will plant a garden instead. When I sit at the family table for Christmas dinner surrounded by the same romantic love I just lost; I will poor myself a second glass of wine and cheers to my own flame-igniting ability that brought me back to life. And no matter what party I’m at or place I may find myself, I won’t be circling the room to find a cute stranger to kiss. I will leave a lipstick stain behind on a mirror because I am deserving of my own self-love. And that love will always bring enough light to guide every ship safely home. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

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