If you’re a recent victim of heartbreak (by “heartbreak” I mean, someone left/ betrayed/ dehumanized you and by “recent” I mean, in the past six months-decade because let’s be real, some breakups know no time constraints) you might feel certain about a few things. For example — that getting your heart broken is actually ‘that bad,’ that all of the weight loss and meaningless sex and self-indulgence in the world isn’t going to make things right, and most importantly, that I must have no goddamn idea what I’m talking about if I think otherwise. And you’d be right — until you aren’t.
What I mean is, you’re perfectly justified in thinking that you’re never going to be able to love anyone else, and that this is the worst thing that will ever happen to you. For now. Because for now, you’re thinking — and feeling — with the wounded, disillusioned scope of someone who has lost the person who meant most to them. You’re grieving, and that’s alright. No one blames you. People have gotten away with literal murder because of their impaired mental capacity. Society’s all, “Okay, you’re going through some sh-t right now. We understand.”
But do we trust the instincts of a grieving person? Of a mentally-compromised person? We do not. That’s why the limousine industry exists — to transport grief-stricken passengers who are too emotionally drained to operate heavy machinery. Right now, you are that grief-stricken passenger, that person who can’t drive, that person who believes — with conviction — that their life is over. You are right, for now. You’re right, because you can’t find it within yourself to feel any differently. You don’t have the strength to look at anything with hindsight or foresight. You’re drowning in your own pain, drowning in the present.
If you’ll just humor me for a minute, though. Think back. Think back to your first crush, or the first person you liked, or your first relationship, or your first love, or any of the number of times you were let down by someone, rejected, broken up with. How it felt. How it felt like you couldn’t breathe, or leave bed, or put your laundry away, you couldn’t even do the laundry, you couldn’t answer the phone or go to school or work or anywhere; all you could do was mourn. Where are those people now, the ones who broke your heart? Do you know? Do you care? That life you thought was over, is it? Or are you still alive, crying over someone you didn’t even know existed that one weekend you spent watching reruns of The OC and devouring cartons of Phish Food because your college boyfriend wanted to go on a break?
That was a bad weekend. But look at you now! Entire years of your life have passed since that initial blow. So much time has gone by that you’ve already manage to love — and lose — an entirely different person. Several people, possibly. You never expected to do that, that weekend you wrapped yourself in knit blankets and drank Andre straight from the bottle, but here you are.
Meeting and loving the person you’ve recently lost was an unexpected consequence of the relationship before that failing. Something good — however fleeting — was born out of that heartbreak. As bad as you feel right now, great things do come from breakups. Revenge diets, for one. The courage to leave behind toxic situations that’ve been holding you back. Another chance to find and be with someone you might actually have a future with: someone whose mother is excited to see you, someone who will share the remote. Adele’s 21.
But the best thing about getting your heart broken is that, once everything is said and done, once you regain your sanity, you survived it. You were not defeated. You did not actually die, no matter how much you thought you wanted to. You lost it there for a little while; you gave into your emotions and let them rule you, but there’s no crime in that. There are worse ways to go through life than to feel things passionately. The point is this: life went on. Life goes on. Heartbreak might be a bitch of a visitor, but she always leaves that gift of a reminder behind when she leaves.
image – atomicjeep