Cheers to vulnerability:
I don’t swear, often, but if I did, it would be one of those days. I’d swear because I’m hurting and because I’m mad. I’d swear because it seems for some reason people take you more seriously when you throw in a bad word. I’d swear because I am just so sick and tired of getting hurt.
It’s been a pattern in my life. A bad one. I’ve trusted someone deeply, and most times, have gotten profoundly hurt. There’s something so much more painful about getting hurt by the people you trusted with so much.
A few years ago, I trusted someone with all my mess. I showed them every flaw, every scar, and every mistake. A few months ago, things got messy, and we both got hurt. It wasn’t anyone’s fault (and if there were fault, I’d blame myself.) But because they knew my every flaw, scar, and mistake, I was sure that was why the relationship failed.
Honestly, I’m not here to talk about who hurt me, or what they did. I’m here to be honest about how much it sucks to get burned. I’m here to talk about how on earth we stand back up afterwards.
Pain is real. It’s so real and that’s okay. Here are a few things I’ve learned about pain, broken relationships, and letting go:
You have to allow yourself to grieve.
I previously had people tell me to ignore my feelings because they weren’t a good indication of the truth. While I do agree that feelings aren’t always reliable, I also believe feelings mean something. Often times feelings indicate that something is wrong, or that something might need to change.
I hid my emotions for years. I told myself that I didn’t care and, “they didn’t hurt me.” It’s easy to pretend, for a while, until you become exhausted. Let me save you the time. Embrace how you actually feel.
Until you finally allow yourself to feel the full amount of pain, you will never move past it. You have to grieve, get angry, cry, and allow yourself to feel.
Be mindful of the time you take to grieve, you need to take this time, but you also need to be careful not to let it consume you.
You have to hold on to truth.
Getting hurt is inevitable. I’ve also found, that when trust is broken, feelings are hurt, and relationships are broken, I become my own worst enemy.
The lies are real: “It’s your fault. If only you hadn’t broken it. If you were different. If you weren’t so much. You deserve to be hurt.”
Those sound absurd, but I’m guessing I’m not alone here. We need to hold on to the truth of who we are. Not what we’ve done, but who we actually are.
Last time I believed these lies, I put everything in danger.
Suddenly I believed every lie about who I previously was, and discredited all the growth I had experienced. I forgot who I had become, lost hope and forgotten how far I had come.
I’ve found holding onto truth in times of pain looks a lot like reminding myself of how far I’ve come and how much I’ve overcome.
Just because someone else can’t see you for all that you are does not mean you are any less. (Which brings me to my next point.)
Sometimes, you have to let go.
The people that can’t see you for all that you are, the ones that constantly remind you of your past, your mistakes, and your failures, you need to let them go.
This part hurts like hell. Letting go is some of the worst pain I’ve ever experienced.
Everything inside of you is telling you to hold on, but you know you can’t. It’s easy to remember the good, try to convince yourself the relationship could still be fixed.
With the people that hurt me most recently I kept telling myself, “You can fix it. You just have to keep apologizing for everything you did years ago.” The truth is, that was never going to change anything because I was the only one trying to fix things.
Trying to hold onto the relationship will only cause more pain. It’s technically your choice to let go, but it doesn’t feel like you have any other options. That’s the worst kind of choice, and yes, it hurts. Letting go will always hurt, but it will also always be worth the pain.
It’s Worth It
Why bother with the pain? I thought that for years. Screw it, relationships, trust, letting go—it can’t be worth it. But it is. Every time.
It’s always worth it to trust again.
I’ve found that the more broken I thought I was, the more was able to heal. The more I healed, the more whole I became.
Only to the depths that we know pain, can we know healing, joy, and wholeness.
It is worth it because who I am today is someone I never could have been without the pain.
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