I met him at a time in my life when everything was perfect. At least I thought it was.
I wasn’t looking for anyone yet he came along and stole my heart. It was a time when I didn’t even know I needed someone in my life, but I quickly knew he was meant to be there.
We were so in love, but our life together wasn’t always perfect. There were so many wrong things about us. But everything inside of me loved him regardless of the mess we were.
Despite our love for each other, there came a point in time when I knew I needed time away from us. I needed time away from him. Our messy love story became toxic. We were hurting each other every minute we were together, so I needed to step away to figure out who I was.
As much as I thought my life was perfect before he walked in it, it didn’t mean I had it all figured out. I was happy, but I was still discovering who I was and where I was going.
Although I loved him, I wasn’t ready to give him all of me. I couldn’t give him all of me. I wasn’t ready to give us the chance we needed to survive.
Love can’t save you from yourself. Love is not the missing piece of the puzzle.
It was hard when we had to say goodbye. He didn’t understand why I had to leave. I didn’t want to go, but I knew this was what I needed in order to maybe one day find each other again.
I walked away from love because I needed us to fall apart in order to find my way back to him. Not just end our relationship but let it fall flat on its face.
And that was what we did, we fell apart hard.
When a relationship ends, for most relationships—it’s over. Forever.
But sometimes people need to fall apart in order to fall back together. Maybe for some of us, we needed a little time away from each other before we could begin the rest of our lives together.
Maybe the timing was off. We needed more time to ourselves before we could give to someone else. We weren’t ready because we still needed time to figure out who we were or who we were becoming.
Love doesn’t always have to come in a neat little package. Love almost never happens by any set of rules or timeline.
So I walked away to begin my journey.
I got brutally honest with myself.
I was losing myself by holding on for as long as I did before I made the decision to leave. I had to love myself just a little bit more if we were ever going to make us work in the future. That entailed pushing him away so I could redirect the love I was giving him and give it to myself.
I had to understand how I was contributing to the problem.
It would have been easy to place all of the blame on him. He didn’t do this or he didn’t do that. But the fact was, there were things inside of myself that needed to be worked on which caused a lot of our issues. I looked to myself for what I needed to change.
I needed to focus on healing myself.
Besides what I had always believed, love can’t save us. Just because I loved him, that wasn’t going to heal the parts of myself that I needed to fix. I couldn’t rely on him to fix what was going on inside of me. That was my job.
I recognized the pain I was feeling within.
The time alone taught me to find ways to heal on my own. I began to write, which opened my world to possibilities I never knew existed. Writing helped me get all the sh*t out of my head that had been torturing me for so long. It also opened my heart to new experiences. I was learning how to truly love myself for the first time and not rely on love from the outside to guide me.
I spent time reflecting on the good.
It was about embracing the change I was going through and having faith that things would work out in the end. No matter what the outcome, I was going to be okay. I will always be me and that doesn’t change. I will always change, and there’s nothing I can do about it. Change is good.
And then one day, I ran into him again. I wasn’t expecting to. I wasn’t sure I ever would. But there he was. There we were standing in front of each other not knowing what to do.
I thought about him over the years. I wondered how he was and if he ever found love again. But when he reached out to embrace me, I knew that he hadn’t. I could feel the love he still felt for me. And the love I felt for him began to blossom again. But this time felt different. I felt different.
And just like that, we were falling back together again.
If we had continued to hold on the first time around, I don’t know if we would have made it. Space was what we needed to heal our relationship.
After all we had been through, after all that was said and done to each other, we began to rediscover love once again.
Our story has a chance to begin again because we weren’t afraid of falling apart.