It tore me apart when you told me you were leaving. I didn’t think that words could slice that bad. No, actually I didn’t think it would be you saying those kinds of words. It tore me apart to know that after all this time together, it didn’t matter to you if I wasn’t there anymore. And in a sense, it tore me apart to know that I was maybe the fault of all this. Maybe I could have loved you better. Maybe I could’ve given more to you. Maybe I shouldn’t have picked fights with you. Maybe I should’ve taken better care of you.
Maybe I should’ve tried harder to make you happy. To make you want to stay.
I ran through every single scenario in my head until everything just became a blur, a messy and painful blur. I ran through every word I could have said, everything I could’ve done to prevent you from leaving. I stayed awake all night, asking myself why I wasn’t enough for you, why I couldn’t have been enough for you.
Then I found out you were already with someone else.
It hadn’t even fully occurred to me that we were actually broken up, that you were no longer mine. I hadn’t even fully accepted it, much less healed from it. Yet here you were, already with someone new. Already happy. Already moved on. No sense of regret or sadness of what you did to me.
For a day or two, I guess I wasn’t sure what to think about that. I was hurt, but it was more of a numbing realization than the excruciating pain that I felt when you first left. For a day or two, I couldn’t think of anything except your hand on her shoulder in that one picture. I couldn’t think of anything except that huge smile that you had on your face—one that you made me feel like I took away from you. I couldn’t think of anything except coming to the realization again and again that this was what you wanted. This other girl.
But one day, I woke up and realized that finding out you were already with someone else was the greatest thing that happened to me. Finding out that you wanted someone else, that you left for someone else freed me from questioning myself.
It was never about me, or anything that I did or did not do.
It wouldn’t have mattered if I loved you harder, if I gave you more, if I tried harder to keep you happy. It wouldn’t have mattered because I realized that nobody can steal someone from you. Once somebody wants to go, there is not much you can do to keep them with you.
Realizing this set me free from doubting myself, from believing that I wasn’t enough. It was never about me. You leaving me for somebody else had nothing to do with me. It had everything to do with you. You were the kind of person who would leave a long-term relationship for the prospect of something new, something exciting. You were the kind of guy that someone could have “stolen”. You were the kind of guy that was never mine to begin with.
There was no reason to blame myself over your shortcomings in loving me. The only thing left for me was to thank you. Thank you for showing me your true colors, for helping me in healing faster than I would have if you actually had taken the time to grieve for me instead of jumping into someone else’s arms. If you had taken the time to be alone, I would have perhaps missed you longer. I would have maybe pined for what could’ve been.
I no longer do that. I no longer stay awake at night thinking of what I could’ve done differently. And I am so, so glad that you started dating someone else right after you left.