On my long drive back from Pennsylvania, I had a lot of time to reflect on the last six months of my life. It feels just like yesterday I was talking about the flowers budding as I wiped tears from my eyes. “New beginnings,” I said. I smiled at my best friend and whispered, “I’m going to be okay,” and honestly kind of laughed at myself as I said that. I didn’t really know it then, but I know it now-and I am.
I’ve lost many amazing people in my life. Death is not an easy experience. But the death of love? That was new to me; too new. I wasn’t okay with the fact that love can burn out like a melted down candle. I wasn’t okay knowing that I will always hold a special place for him in my heart. I thought when a relationship ended, all feelings and heartbeats should cease and hatred, anger, and resentment should replace what once was utter happiness. I still have a hard time grasping these ideas, but I know them as the truth-and truth they are/truth they always will be.
The hardest part of getting over this has been the memories. My mind is either very intelligent or very, very stupid. I’ve had this ability-maybe a defense mechanism-to completely remove the mental image of him out of my brain. Sure, I can still feel and I still have that inner dialogue where I can say his name. But, to see his face-to remember all of the amazing times where I thought my entire life was written, signed, and sealed-and even to remember the night it all ended-this is something I cannot do. I know it’s more of a “will not” than a “cannot,” but I feel so much better not being able to remember those images. I know it’s probably not healthy and I know it’s going to be the next step in creating a better me, but at least for right now, if I’m not ready to do it, at least I’m ready to admit it. Admitting is half the battle when it comes to dealing with your inner struggles.
When I look back on this spring and summer and when analyzing how I feel at this very moment: I. Feel. Happy.
I had an amazing summer. I spent it with the people who mean the absolute most to me. I didn’t take one single moment for granted. I jumped at every opportunity and chased the sun through each month with happiness and more understanding than I ever have. Do I still feel empty at times? Of course I do. It isn’t in my nature to forget something I felt so strongly about. I’ll always have a missing spot in my heart until someone comes along who fits into my crazy passionate puzzle. Did I find a new love? Absolutely not! I will always enjoy dating and boys. I enjoyed it before I met him and have had just much fun after him. I won’t search for love because I know I cannot go looking for something so indescribable. I can search for dates, or cuddles, or my next kiss. All I need to search for is everlasting happiness. Because where there is happiness and warmth, love will come searching. And as much as my heart was in so much pain and even now, still gives me a little sting here and there, I know I will always be okay.
Because I truly loved.
With every single breath of my lungs and every pump of blood in my heart.
I loved madly.
I loved unconditionally.
I honestly could not have loved any better.
And for all of these reasons, I know love will find it’s way back to me. I’m not looking, I’m not pursuing, and I’m not going to get my panties all up in a twist if I’m single for the next few years. Why? Because as much as I experienced all of this joy, there is nothing greater in this world than to have love for yourself. And that, my friends, I do.
Goodbye, Summer. You were warm and therapeutic and exactly what I needed. Until next time.