Break ups are funny sometimes.
Despite all the pain and hurt they can cause and have caused, they’re really quite funny.
Well, at least in my experience.
A week and a half ago, I found myself up late in the Seattle hostel my friends and I were staying in during spring break. Here, I was ferociously writing about how much I still hated my ex. Even though I thought I had gotten past that stage ages ago. Granted, I was just a little (okay, maybe a lot) drunk in that moment…but the next day, as a much more sober Britta tried to decipher the messy, emotion-filled words of the night before, I still resonated with them.
We broke up more than a year and a half ago and I still find myself thinking about him sometimes.
The pain has dulled–the fact that he hurt me, really the fact that we hurt each other, is still incredibly real–but the pain isn’t nearly as sharp as it once was.
But it’s still there. It still dwells within me–along with all the good times we had, along with how important he was to me, how much I did love him. Yes, it was love for the wrong reasons, it was a selfish love, a love to make me feel better about myself.
It was still love, though. He was still my first love.
The term “break-up” assumes everything is over. It assumes that one person that used to mean so much no longer matters. It assumes that moving on is easy.
Well, if that’s the biggest load of rubbish I’ve ever heard.
Everything is over between us. It has been for a while.
But that doesn’t mean the feelings are gone, that with those magic words “We’re breaking up,” everything we had together disappeared into thin air. Because it didn’t. And it shouldn’t.
I spent almost two years with my ex-boyfriend and even though they certainly weren’t the best two years of my life, they are still a part of my story. I learned so much about myself from that relationship, I grew so much. And we did have our good times. It wasn’t all bad.
The truth is, even though I no longer love him, even though I have no desire to be with him again, and even though he hurt me incredibly, I still do care about him. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that. He was a big part of my life for half of my college career, and there is absolutely nothing wrong with that.
I honestly think I wouldn’t have been able to express the hatred I was feeling towards him that night in the hostel if a part of me still didn’t care of him. I think hate is a very real feeling, a feeling that can only emerge from an emotional attachment of sorts. If I really didn’t care about him anymore, I wouldn’t feel any emotion towards him, not even hatred. But I do and I’m still working through these feelings, and that’s okay. These emotions are good, they are all part of the process of moving forward.
You know, I’ve discovered that break ups are kind of like a very large puzzle. Just when you think you’ve completely moved on, another unfinished piece manifests itself…and who knows how long it will take before the puzzle is completely and totally finished.
I’m okay with that, though. This unfinished puzzle is just one more piece of my journey through this incredible adventure called life.
And I am learning so much.