I’d heard of that feeling. The feeling after the heartbreak, when you stop believing. The feeling that overwhelms you and makes you believe that you will never love again, and you resign yourself to the fact that this was all it was ever going to be. I never thought I’d feel that way, but having revelled in that feeling for the past few months, let me just tell you this: it sucks.
I was a die-hard romantic. I’d always be rooting for the fairytale to have a happy ending, always want the knight in shining armour to show up under the tower and beckon his beloved, always need to know that things would work out for them. Over the c(o)urse of life, I’ve grown to stop believing in magic. From being the eleven year old who cried when she didn’t get that letter to Hogwarts, to incessantly watching the Princess Diaries on repeat, hoping someday my grandmother told me I was going to be a princess, I became this pragmatic, unemotional shell who believed that love was a once in a lifetime opportunity.
I never was able to understand how someone could whisper those sweet nothings to you, and a few months down the line, do the same with someone else. It just didn’t make sense. How could you love someone and tell them that they were your sunshine, your oxygen, the reason for your being, and then suddenly turn around and find that in someone else? The answer is simple: life goes on.
But between the space of unfathomable pain of separation and finding that other person who is your new lifeline, comes a space where you don’t think you could love again. It may not happen to everyone, and I’ve seen it more often than not in those whose love lay unrequited. “It’s him or no one else.”
The problem lies in the inability to move past this feeling. Not everyone deals with things the same way, that’s the easiest observation to make. No same thing will work for two different people because inherently, even though the biological make-up of a person’s heart is the same, the reason for the fast-paced heartbeat was different, and that does play a huge role in the way one frames their outlook to a situation.
I don’t believe that you could never move on. I’m sure you could, if you wanted it bad enough. But there’s something which is always going to hold you back, and keep you holding on. The attachment a person develops towards another they have a more than platonic emotional connect with grows into something so significantly bigger than one mortal that sometimes that feeling is almost unbreakable. Or so we think.
I don’t pretend to understand people. I don’t pretend to understand myself. But it seems to add up; when you fall in love, there’s always a part of you that is cautious, resentful, neglectful, either towards yourself or the other person. This is the part that gets jealous, insecure, selfish and allows for the build-up of negative energy. But the negativity begins to feed off the love that the relationship breeds. Eventually, the negativity either takes over, or is suppressed by the all-consuming power of love. But when the relationship no longer has any of the parties giving it more love, the negativity finds its way through and suddenly, the negative attachment is all you’re left holding onto.
Frankly, I think I lost the point I was trying to make because understanding relationships takes a lot more expertise than the rantings of a twenty-something year old who has no idea what life really is. But at the same time, can you really deny that ever so often, you do allow yourself to fall prey to the spiral of negativity which essentially causes the very foundation of your relationship to weaken?
Where there is negativity, there is room for heartbreak, because you no longer come from a place of love. The relationship is no longer determined by the passion which made you fall for them in the first place.
I’ve noticed one thing about rom-coms. They tell you how they met, how they fell in love, how they overcame the obstacles, and how they got together. But they aren’t telling you what happens next. They aren’t telling you that every relationship takes work and needs to be nurtured. That every relationship falls prey to the negativity that invariably builds up inside everyone. That sometimes, life doesn’t work out for the protagonist, and eating ice-cream in bed with your girlfriends isn’t the solution.
Sometimes, no matter what you do, the pain lingers as a constant reminder of what was, what could have been, and what didn’t be. Sometimes it takes a lot more than a crate of wine to really understand how you feel and to be able to get some perspective. It isn’t you, because that isn’t a solution – that’s a problem. The solution is the answer to the question of what are you going to do about it?
Resignation is the worst coping mechanism I have ever heard of. I don’t believe that you can just allow yourself to sink into the pit and be okay with never getting out. Denial of opportunity is the greatest misfortune one can subject themselves to. There’s a whole life out there, a life sans the romance that you so strongly believes determines the fate your existence. But that simply isn’t true. Because, and it literally is as simple as this; life goes on.
Yes, you had your heart broken. Feel the pain. Feel that shards from their icy words cut through your heart and break it into a million tiny pieces so small you don’t think you could ever find them all again. It’s okay to feel like it’s never going to be okay. Because you may not believe it right now, but it is going to be okay. You will find your groove someday, and you will be everything you could be with or without that someone else. Heartbreak is one of the hardest things to go through, no doubt, but it’s also given the most misplaced importance. You couldn’t have given your heart away, because they weren’t the person it was meant for. So it’s still lying there, inside of you, waiting for someone or something else to speed up the beat and allow you to feel alive again.
Cry rivers of tears, it’s great for the environment. But don’t close that heart up. Because if it hasn’t been them so far, it probably won’t ever be. You aren’t living in a rom-com, no matter how much you’ve brainwashed yourself into believing you are. Heartbreak is an eventuality that teaches the greatest lessons of all. The best thing you could do for yourself is live through it and come out stronger and more powerful a person than you were before. Because in the end, you had it in you all along, and you control your own life. If they chose to walk away, that’s on them. Every choice has consequences, and unfortunately, your love is now inconsequential to them. So save that love, for someone who wants it, someone who feels it too, and someone who knows that under all these layers and walls they now have to break through, is a person with so much to give, that nothing else will matter, because as life goes on, the wounds heal, and someday, you will grow to love every memory that made you the person you are today.