“One of the toughest events in life is walking away from someone you’re so madly in love with, but sometimes, you have no choice.” – Victoria Joslin
I smoothed out the sand between my toes, waiting for the sun to set on a breezy August evening. Beach sunsets were always my favorite, the feeling of the sand, the smell of the beach, and the breeze in my hair.
I always felt free.
You rubbed my leg and said “Remember sitting here on our second date?” I smiled, but my heart smiled a little brighter. Before I could react, I saw my best friend. I was so confused, but we ran to each other. I turned around to you to ask what was going on and there you were, on one knee. As I put my head in my hands, I heard you say, “I love you, I want you to marry me. Will you marry me?”
You slipped that rose gold forevermark emerald cut diamond ring on my finger, as tears streamed down my face.
I did it, I thought, I finally reached the ultimate form of happiness.
The next few months were filled with plethora amounts of pinning on Pinterest, the perfect dress, the perfect cake, the perfect wedding party, the perfect venue, and the perfect everything. I wanted to create that wedding I dreamed of when I was a little girl. I was so in love, and I couldn’t wait to walk down the aisle to that man. I felt like I lost my breath every time he looked at me. It felt so right.
I can’t pinpoint what exactly went wrong, but something along the way began to change. I was beginning to feel trapped in the life I was living. I was so angry and upset all the time. I stopped going to school, I stopped taking care of myself, and was in love with a miserable person.
The thing about our relationship is that we had so many issues, but we kept shutting them out, because we really did love each other. The brutal truth about this is that sometimes love just isn’t enough. You need more than that; you need reassurance, intimacy, patience, time, honesty, and the ultimate key communication. Truthfully, we didn’t have much more than love for each other. I always envisioned marrying someone who made me feel so important, so beautiful, so worthy, but I never felt that with him. His misery was handed over to me, almost like I became him.
I felt so stuck.
I wanted to run, I pictured what it would be like if I just left, and established myself. Would I be happy? Would I be able to love again? What if I’m alone forever? Some nights when he’d be peacefully asleep next to me, I’d slide my fingertips on his back and cry silent tears. I loved him so much, but there was something missing.
Was this pre-wedding jitters or was there really something wrong?
Something was holding me back from marrying this man. It wasn’t that I was scared of being married, because I am obsessed with the fact that as humans we can pick someone to hold our hearts for the rest of our lives, but it was my inner self, something deep in my instincts whispered no. I knew I had to go, I just didn’t know how to do it.
The bravest thing I ever did was run.
I finally took a risk and did it. Saying I lost my mind is an understatement of what happened when I actually packed that place and left. I cried all the time, and it was so excruciating. I didn’t know what to do with myself, but I told myself that this was the life I chose, so I began to embrace the uncertainty.
As time went on, I was beginning to not only get me back, but a better me, an adventurous me, a happy me. I was living life the way I wanted to live it. I was living the life I so easily gave away. I finally didn’t have anyone telling me what road to take. Emotionally, spiritually, and physically I was stronger. I released the image in my head of what I thought life should be. At last, that once grey sky was painted a beautiful blue.
I realized that nobody is ever stuck. You are always one decision away from a totally different life.
Before I knew it, I found myself on that annual trip to California I never thought I’d take again. I was overlooking San Diego, with that same familiar smell of the beach, and breeze in my hair, when I felt everything at once.
I found my freedom again.
And all I had to do was let go.