December 1, 2016

The Relationships that Break us—Make Us.

Flickr/tacit requiem


“David’s purpose was to shake you up, drive you out of that marriage that you needed to leave, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light could get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you had to transform your life.” ~ Elizabeth Gilbert


Relationships resemble the ocean—we sail without the slightest idea whether breaking waves will occur.  

The bigger the waves, the harder we try to keep the ship from sinking. Nevertheless, the longer the ship remains in the storm, the more damage it is prone to face.

We’ve all gone through one wrecked relationship that wrecked us in return. It wasn’t necessarily about the other person or even about us. It was about the chain of events, the fact that we expected to sail on calm waters and a storm surprised us.

And so we break. We feel lost amid the mind’s logic and the heart’s futile whispers—but among them stands the truth which is neither of the mind nor of the heart. In the process of figuring out to which we must lend an ear, we split in half. We lose sight of our complete, authentic self.

Some relationships inflict such significant pain on us that we no longer recognize the person we were before pursuing them. We want to be able to fix the relationship while also fixing ourselves, but deep down we know it’s almost impossible to fix them both at the same time—one has to go missing.

Automatically, we choose to save the relationship. And the more we work to save it, the more we lose ourselves. We become drained on all levels: emotional, physical and mental.

The relationship becomes a place of self-annihilation instead of a place for rebirth.

Usually it takes us many deaths before we realize it is time to rise. But eventually we break the relationship to stop the breakage within us. We wonder what we did to deserve such a dismal fate. It feels like bad karma, when in fact it is good.

Because the truth is, some relationships break us so we can become who we are today. The relationships that break us make us. They unfold a freedom and strength we didn’t know could possibly be attained.

We create who we are throughout our lifetimes, but there will always be gaps that can only be filled by being broken. Some lessons can only be learned the hard way.

When the relationship ends, we see ourselves as unfortunate. We mourn our loss and wish we could rewind. But when we heal and behold the redefined version of ourselves, we realize that being broken was inevitable—and needed.

We realize that being broken served its purpose.

We realize we needed to break in order to heal.

We realize broken relationships aren’t our destiny.

We realize we’re worthy of love, and deserve to experience an astounding intimate connection. Just because we broke once, doesn’t mean we will break again.

We become more aware, more attentive. We become more in control of ourselves, yet learn to surrender to what’s outside. We remember who we were before and continue sculpting our being.

We appreciate sailing on calm waters, but don’t fear sailing amid the storm. We build our ship sturdy enough that it won’t wreck, come what may.

We appreciate happiness, because we know how miserable our life can get. We appreciate serenity because we know the destruction that anger can cause.

Because of our past struggle, we focus more on the strength that sprang from it. We focus on the transformation. We build a shield around ourselves that is so strong nothing can disrupt it.

We appreciate solitude, and realize that sometimes it’s better to choose to be alone than to be in a relationship that makes us feel lonely.

We learn how to listen to both the heart and the mind—and tune into our intuition to find the truth hidden in between.

We become aware that a healthy relationship doesn’t need to be fixed—only strengthened.

The relationships that break us teach us how to rebuild for our future relationships. And we learn that the first step toward building a strong connection, is being vigilant about not losing ourselves.

Sometimes new beginnings can only take place after painful endings—and this is a lesson we should embrace.


Author: Elyane Youssef

Image: tacit requiem/Flickr

Editor: Nicole Cameron

Leave a Thoughtful Comment

Read 0 comments and reply

Top Contributors Latest

Elyane Youssef  |  Contribution: 889,965