The Things I Learned Only by Having My Heart Broken

Without a doubt, love is the most beautiful and magical and magnificent thing regardless of how cruel the people, the situations and other things in this world can sometimes be.

I’ve  been in love a number of times in my life – or so I thought. I’ve been in a relationship with different men whom I know loved and adored me so much,  however, I left such relationships because I felt suffocated at times and more importantly, I felt I wasn’t ready for a commitment until one guy changed everything.

I was ready but he wasn’t.
I was in love with him but he was in only with half a heart.
I know he is the one – rather, he was “the one”

I was ripped apart. I felt betrayed and helpless and all things collapsed right before my eyes. Everything in my life shattered into tiny puzzles and I remained motionless, stuck in a delusion that we could make it work but how can a relationship work if he already gave up on me? We no longer share the same belief that our relationship is worth fixing.

But I stayed in the hopes that maybe, just maybe, all we need is time that I literally accepted any mere scrap of effort he made until I couldn’t stomach it no more. I cannot go through heartbreak after heartbreak every time he decide to appear and disappear in my life. I’m tired of making up reasons for all the mistakes he did, all the pain he caused me and showering me earth shattering blows that have dragged my heart in the muck and almost the little dignity I have left for myself.

He made me question myself and my beliefs and principles in life that never happened with anyone in my past. He made me doubt, he made me feel jealous which I rarely felt in my life. He made me feel a lot of things but mostly, and unfortunately, negative ones.

I knew in my heart that there is still love left for him but I have to save myself from drowning in a river of sorrow. It is not his fault, but now I know that it wasn’t my fault either. For months I’ve been blaming myself, interrogating myself endlessly with “what ifs?” and “what could have been?” and if I should have been more malleable towards him and everything he wanted me to be.

And I am just tired. From the clarity that I’ve hardly gathered the past few months; through all the push and pulls, the ups and downs, and everything in between, I would like to share the lessons I learned by having my heart-broken and the ordeal of being with someone who is not yet “the one”.

1. Love is not blind. – We are all flawed and broken and bruised and imperfect in our own little ways because we dare to live our lives with all the rolls and jabs and strokes of life. However, these should not be used against us. Love sees beyond our weaknesses, deficiencies and shortcomings and loves us anyway. Love accepts us for who we really are and would never attempt to change us to conform to what the other person wants or cite these as reasons not to be with us because love is too busy loving us for the way we truly are. Love is accepting the person as it is.

2. Love shows up. – They will meet you halfway and will never let you beg for love or force love or chase love or manipulate love or even ask for love. Love will go through all the hoops, will cross mountains, will dive in through all seas just to be with you no matter what happens and even things between the two of you gets a little uncertain, it will still show up. It will never let go regardless of how strong the turbulence is. It is supposed to be intact or grow stronger and will never leave because some storm passed by.

3. Some things cannot and should not be fixed. – No matter how much you want to stay in the relationship or at the sidewalk of the now over relationship or wait for the person to come around or worst, waiting for them to change; some things can’t and shouldn’t be fixed. Rather, gather yourself and the tattered remnants of your dignity and walk away. You and the other person no longer share the same belief that the relationship is worth fixing and instead of being motionless as a pole, learn when to fight for yourself and know that you deserve so much better. Sometimes, people and their feelings change and there is nothing we can do about it. We cannot and should not control the other person, the only thing we have total control of is ourselves.

4. The hardest part about time is that it ACTUALLY TAKES TIME. – Never rush yourself into moving on by doing unhealthy things or diving down the spiral road of bad habits. Break ups hurt like hell and there is absolutely no quick remedy to heal the broken parts of yourself but it does not mean that you get a free ticket to a possible long-term of problems that will not hurt anyone but yourself. I’ve been there; parties after parties and countless number of booze that I’ve chug down because I thought that it might help me forget the pain even for a little while and honestly, it did mask the pain but it also kept on shedding layers of my dignity. Let time help in healing those wounds and take the high road (believe me, you would rather take the high road than to be in a dump of regrets). Let the remaining energy you have be placed into more productive activities and hobbies you never had the chance to do while you were in a relationship. (I did solo traveling to a place where he wouldn’t let me go alone and it was truthfully fulfilling).

5. Sometimes in life, we need to experience shitty relationships the were not meant for us or people who can’t see our worth. – There are people in our lives who treats us poorly regardless of how much we care and love them and only now that I’ve realized that when I experienced being with one in a relationship that I told myself; not anymore. This was the time when I learned to never allow anyone to treat me poorly again. I’ve come to the fact that I need to set and enforce my standards, and that I love myself too much to stay in a relationship who doesn’t or cannot love me as much.

6. When you truly know yourself, you will never have second doubts about yourself. – One thing that we always argue about is how I am and how I act. He would often comment on how I always make myself pretty so that “other guys would notice me” or how I should not go out at night even if it was just 7:00 in the evening because he thinks “I just want to attract guys” or how I am not supposed to let my finger nails grow too long or not to smile and laugh too much to how I am with my family. I let him be in control of my life way too much and still end up being wrong. I know who I was before I met him and in a blink of an eye, I let him change me. I was blinded by the love I had for him that I almost forgot who I was until a moment came when I was slapped so hard by reality that this is NOT who I am anymore; I am not the one to “attract guys or to make guys notice me”. I make myself pretty not for anyone else but myself, I go out if and when I want or need to, I smile or laugh the way I normally do and that is supposed to be okay. That is supposed to be acceptable because that is who I am and how I was before he met me. Never doubt yourself just to conform to what the other person wants because again, if the person truly loves you, that person will see beyond those quirks among other things.

7. Action speaks louder than words. – We all know this but sometimes we need to remind ourselves that this is indeed true. Words are empty without action. I cannot count the times he told me he loves me but I can count the times he only proved it to be true and I am certain that the number of his actions are far less than his words of “I love you”. I didn’t know at the time or probably because I was obsessed with idea that he is “the one” that I wasn’t able to see things clearly. I was not able to think things through and let my judgment be clouded with the love I had for him that I never mind when his words lack actions. Action speaks louder than words. I learned that I would rather hear less and see more than the other way around.

8. Cheating is still cheating regardless of its nature (whether pure texts and calls only to actually seeing someone on the side). – This is very unacceptable in any nature. I’ve never cheated in my previous relationships because I do not like the feeling of doubts and having to wonder every now and then. I gave my heart only to him but I never knew I was sharing his with other women. I forgave him over and over until I realized I cannot trust him anymore. Secrecy and lying and betrayal are still forms of cheating and it is unacceptable in any way.

9. The moment when clarity strikes in is not only liberating but is worthy of your entire life. – It may have taken awhile before it catch up on me but I am glad it never gave up. It may be months since the break up and only weeks after the last time we saw each other but that moment of clarity of wanting more and better for myself gained me powers to finally pull all the strings and completely and permanently delete him from my own recycle bin after months and months of lurking there. It is time to stand up and start walking towards a much better future for me without him.

10. When it is OVER, let it BE OVER. – No more turning back, no more drama and agony with being in a relationship that is not fit, not a match, not meant to be, so no more pulling all the stops to look back and wait for the other person to turn around. When it’s over, let it be over. Stop rewriting the past and continue driving towards moving on with your life and seize the opportunity to reinvent yourself, to make yourself better and more importantly, to put back the pieces that once was unscrewed in your life. Rise to the challenge of pulling yourself out of the shit hole and take the time to experiment and have fun with yourself. It is not easy, this I know, and I think it wasn’t supposed to be one. I was in love only to get my heart back broken. But life isn’t over, the relationship is over but I am still here learning from the mistakes of the past. And accepting the fact that it is really over, only then will the pain begin to subside.

Being single is a gift and should be cherished for what it is. Seize this opportunity to be really and totally alone to know yourself better, to do the things that you want the most, to enjoy everything that life has to offer, after all, we never know when the right one comes and we might never get this opportunity again.

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