August 13, 2020

Lessons from Heartbreak: Loving the Ones who weren’t Meant to Stay.


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Sometimes we meet people and they just instantly stand out from everyone else.

In my case, this happens pretty rarely, so I tend to give my all when I find it; I try to hold onto the person for as long as I can. Because when you meet someone special, you want to keep them in your life forever, right?

Unfortunately, I have been quite unlucky when it comes to romance. I have had my heart broken thrice—by my first love, a good friend, and someone I’ve never even met.

My first love is a given; it’s called your first love for a reason. It’s supposed to be the most painful heartbreak—and it was.

I had many firsts with him. When things didn’t work out, it was also the first time in my life that I ever had to deal with a broken heart. It took me almost a year to completely move on, but when I did, I knew I was a completely different person.

My good friend broke my heart without even realizing it. At first, I convinced myself it was just a matter of timing. I liked him, and he liked me (or so I thought), but we didn’t like each other at the same time. So, I waited—for years. Maybe, subconsciously, I had hoped things would eventually align, but they never did. But this one’s the type of love that never goes away. We no longer speak to each other, but I continue to root for him from afar. It may not be romantic love, but is love nevertheless.

The last person to break my heart (so far) was someone I didn’t expect to impact my life. I’ve always been skeptical of online dating. I just never believed you could fall for someone that way. Virtual communication didn’t seem like enough to allow for real feelings to develop. But life surprises you when you least expect it. Maybe it wasn’t even real love. After all, I had never met him in person.

Maybe it was an attachment? Infatuation? Comfort? I’m not sure. But I do know we had a genuine connection despite living thousands of miles apart. I liked him a lot. He helped me climb out of a sad hole I was in, and so I am thankful. But as with all things built with no strong foundation, the “relationship” crumbled.

It’s funny. I started writing this piece intending to point out and stress how tired I am of meeting new people, opening up to them, and having to start all over again. But as I wrote about the three people who stood out from the rest, I found myself smiling.

I keep remembering a specific scene from the film “He’s Just Not That Into You.” The main character Gigi tells Alex, who treats girls like they’re expendable, that she might make a fool of herself every time she puts herself out there, but she’s much closer to finding love than he is. She tells him, “You may not get hurt or make an ass of yourself that way but you don’t fall in love that way either.” And she’s absolutely right.

Unexpectedly, I have come to appreciate these genuine connections more. I really do believe I was meant to meet these people. It doesn’t matter that they weren’t meant to stay. I said it myself: these types of connections are rare, so I am grateful to have experienced them—three times.

Despite the heartaches, I’m one lucky girl, after all.

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