What do you do when one moment you’re floating and the next you’re drowning?
When your buoy in the sea of uncertainty suddenly vanishes and you’re left sinking and the waves are doing the best they can to keep your submerged?
Each wave take away a bit of your spirit and motivation; the ability to breathe and fight. When they are staggered too close together, sometimes it feels easier to give up and fade away in trail of traceless bubbles.
Life isn’t about the easy choices though. It’s about learning and growing from decisions and the inevitable mis-steps. It’s about not letting these mistakes plague, but rather positively influence you and your future self. It’s not about letting go, but rather believing in your own ability ; to be held accountable for your actions and decide on your path with determination. It’s to live with no regrets, that you made the best possible decision in that moment in time, regardless that upon reflection that there was a better alternative.
Right now I have no familial support, no boyfriend to lean back on, no clarified future plans. I’ve hit a many rock bottoms, that with each passing wave, collapsed and gave way to another one. I’ve learnt that faking happiness is like placing a couple home brand bandaids over a gaping wound- it just ain’t gonna cut it. To really begin healing, I’ve got to accept the fact I may need a couple of stitches. The wound may scar later on, but hey, it gives me character.
It’s a slow and tedious journey. But to get halfway there is to believe in your ability to get better and to take that first shaky step towards that goal of the ever elusive ‘happiness’. It could be something as simple as taking up a hobby (currently doing pottery- I’m terrible but it brings me much joy) to something like picking up a favourite book and going to your favourite place to calm down and read instead of doing something rash like utilising that noose you tied out of ‘curiosity’. (Philosopher’s stone holds a near and dear spot in my heart)
I think of life and emotions like a sin graph. Right now you’re at a low but it’s impossible for it to stay there forever unless you want to. Same with day to day emotions; one day you could be feeling completely fine and next moment you could be muffling your sobs into a tear soaked pillow. That’s completely okay. It’s alright to feel shit. It’s alright to feel lonely. It’s alright to feel like the sun will never shine again. But it’s not okay to shut yourself off, to alienate the people who want to be there for you. They are the most priceless gift you’ll ever receive; to be supported and loved unconditionally by anyone. Just know that with every moment you spend doing whatever you think will make you feel better in the long run, you’ll soon notice that the birds chirp a little sweeter, the breeze is a little gentler and the stars twinkle a little more.
My parents have always called me weak and soft hearted. Therefore due to primary school bullying, I had learnt to put on a brave face in front of others in high school. I guess I kind of became the scary funny chick. No one ever saw me cry or seem vulnerable; I didn’t want anyone to take advantage of me. But you know what? Unbreakable friendships are only formed when both parties are genuine with one another and more importantly themselves. To grow stronger, is to admit that you are indeed vulnerable but you mutually trust that you will not exploit the other one’s weaknesses.
Falling in love is the same too. You allow the other person to delve deeper than anyone had before, letting them see the good, bad and the ugly and trusting that they’ll understand and accept what they find. That they won’t sprint away screaming into the night, but instead love and support you. However, when that suddenly disappears, you’re suddenly at a loss. It feels like you’ve lost a part of yourself and rebuilding that, well, is a daily upward struggle.
It’s hard seeing them moving on with their life without you. It kills me to say ‘Good luck for your internship tomorrow. Don’t worry you’ll crush it’ instead of ‘Babe you’re gonna do great. I know you’re nervous but just know I’m here for you. Let’s go out for celebratory dinner afterwards (my treat) and snuggle in bed ❤ ^_^’ From knowing everything, to nothing; when you so desperately want to know and care about him, but instead, you’re left picking at the crumbs left behind.
Initially every time I walked past a place where we shared a special memory it was a though my heart cracked a little more. Not only could I visualise what happened, I remember how I felt; to be so happy to watch him smile at my dorky attempts to make him laugh, to feel so safe when he intertwined our fingers and just held me, to feel so loved when he gently stroked my face and gazed into my eyes.
Now whenever I do something that we promised we would do together, it’s like something hard lodges in my throat. It’s so undeniably hard letting go of holiday plans, nye (another year without a kiss sigh), anniversary, valentines, his birthday, gold coast, europe etc. It fucking sucks. And every time I see something he would like, e.g. a doge meme, I would have to fight the reflex to forward it onto him and instead I simply like it and hope it crops up on his newsfeed so it brightens up his day a bit. I physically have to clench my fists, dig my nails into my palms to cling onto reality and focus on another source of pain. The worst is when sometimes I think he’s there and when I look overm reality backhands me in the face.
It hurts when you know if you could only change one thing, the outcome would be different. Like if only I waited until he asked for a breakup and I managed to change his mind. What I could have said was the same thing that I said to you 2 years ago. You had trouble deciding between two girls, one lived far but you liked her more and one lived close and it was more convenient. I said it was unfair to choose the close one just because of convenience and though the further one required more effort and work, it was worth it because you liked her more. Nothing in life is easy, if it’s truly worth it, you have to work hard to earn it. If you give up, you either don’t deserve the result or you have decided it isn’t worth the effort. Nothing in life will be handed to you on a silver platter, every decision, every goal will come with undisclosed settlements.
In the beginning a major reason why I didn’t want a reconciliation was because of my pride. I didn’t want to beg for a chance, for all the pain I had already felt to be for nought. I wanted to be able to throw away my pride and tell him all of this, but I’m terrified. Not of judgement, but of rejection- I knew his answer would be ‘We’re done for good.’But why couldn’t I be selfish and brave for once and actually pursue the person I want in my life? Why do I listen to my friends opinions and value them over my own thoughts? Why can’t I actively pursue what makes me happy?
I’m so tired of giving excuses for myself. For the past month and a bit, it has been about me. What gives me momentary and or permanent happiness? What do I need to do to achieve that? Although I’ve made a lot of progress already, there’s still a long way to go. Time really does heal all wounds and despite some days feel like you’re being stabbed by lightsaber wielding leprechauns, it really does get easier. It isn’t without work though, superficially I’ve been learning how to drive, attending physiotherapy sessions I’ve been putting off for years, cooking, painting, playing with clay, going off on midnight adventures, the works. But on a deeper level I’ve been confronting my fears of my future plans, my goals, and myself.
I’ve come to realise how much progress there is to be made. E.g. my pet peeve is lying and yet throughout the past year, lying had become my default. I lied to everyone about everything because of any reason big or small. I made excuses as to why I had to lie. I never took responsibility for my actions. I became this person who actually thought she needed to keep a record of all the lies told and make sure that the people who ran in the same circles heard the same information so that she didn’t get exposed for the piece of shit she truly was. I’m sick and tired of that. It makes you become a haunting shell of a person you once were. In the long run, it’s easier to just tell the truth regardless of the consequences.
When people ask me whether or not I’m over him, I reply with ‘I don’t know’. Even though mostly I feel nothing but apathy, but on those rare occasions, that isn’t the case. Take yesterday for example, I talked about the fights we used to have without feeling anything but bemusement at how stubborn and silly we both were. But today, out of blue, I felt a bit blue for the first time in a long time. My friend had unknowingly cracked open the sealed box of emotions.
The moments I felt most loved by him weren’t the silly messages or the long skype calls (as despite all the advances in technology, emotions really aren’t translated that well) or even the dates. It was in the subtleties; how when I was on the cusp on sleep on the train and he would gently stroke my face and trace my knuckles, how I didn’t realise he would protectively hover around me at social gatherings, how he held me and made me breathe a little easier, how I’d wake up in his arms and thought that I was still dreaming.
But it’s too late. Despite the 95%+ possibility of me never returning to Adelaide, I don’t think we will get back together. A relationship is definitely not high up on my priority list, let alone revisiting an old one. Though I don’t want the months of non-contact that happened before to occur again, I am only responsible for the efforts I put in. Although there comes a point where you have to decide whether or not chasing a shadow of a person is worth it- it’s not giving up or sinking to their level, it’s admitting that despite your best efforts, it needs to be reciprocated for there to be a friendship. I have reached that point.
All I can do now is to keep focusing on other aspects in my life that bring me happiness. ^_^
[treat this last part as a salute to the relationship and a bid farewell]
DONE AND DUSTED
[edit later at a saner hour]