My rare specimen, you know the one I was in a long distance relationship with, and I are no longer together. It’s taken me a week to decide whether or not I was going to write about this but here I am.
The days after it happened, whenever someone asked me “how was your weekend, how are you?”just casually in conversation, I said good/fine…. and I meant it.
*What do you mean? Breakups are supposed to be painful and result in a cry fest with a bucket of ice cream??!!*
Yes it sucks, but what made this one different was that we made this decision together. We talked about it and processed it together. Having to break up is never ideal, but when you assess the needs and expectations of a relationship and it doesn’t match up with what one or both parties can give, there isn’t really much of an other option. It wasn’t one of those breakups that end up in resentment, hurt and “f*k you,” like many movies portray it to be. It was more of a “conscious uncoupling” as my friend calls it: an intentional and mature decision made by two adults who care and respect each other very much.
So…. How am I doing? I am doing ok.
We’re broken up but I’m not broken.
I drew it out to show you what I mean: (Sorry for how messy it is, I drew it with my finger in an app). If you’re a visual thinker, I recommend Inkflow.)
When you begin a relationship with someone, hopefully you are two complete and independent individuals who choose to care and be there for each other, sharing your day to day lives, biggest dreams and everything in between. Sure, we’re human so you might have some scars and bruises (an answer on Quora about that here) after some previous relationships. But entering a relationship is a choice that you make (because it takes two to tango).
Over time you become inseparable. Best friends. Lovers. Confidantes. Teachers. Muses. You are inextricably connected and so intimately acquainted with each other. You are two separate individuals who are bound by the love and connection you have with each other.
And then after some time, a break up happens. If it’s abrupt and brash- a decision one makes for the other or a decision that is made without the other, it’s like two people were ripped apart, leaving holes and tears of doubt, hurt, disconnect and misunderstanding. In breakups like this, people just leave without explanation and/or insults or hurtful words are slung at each other. Then the two hearts look and feel like this. They’re bruised and broken in places that didn’t need to be and wouldn’t be if the break up was done with care and love.
The breakup I went through felt more like this:
It was, like I said, a conscious uncoupling. Through honest conversation and time, the lives that were inextricably connected, slowly separate and let go. It’s hard to fill in the space that the other left, but at least it’s not broken. Now it’s just a space for the individual to fill again with their self care and self love, to prepare itself for another relationship down the line. In the meantime, there’s always a special place in their hearts for the other person. In fact, the impact, perspective and positivity that the other person left during the time they shared together is irreplaceable and unforgettable. Because of that special person- that one of a kind person- two individuals are empowered by the love, friendship and life that they shared together and can move on in their lives even stronger than before.
The fact that the rare specimen and I are no longer together, is sad. But I’m so grateful to have known and experienced such a one of a kind of relationship with a one of a kind human being, and am humbled to still have him as an important person in my life. Like I’ve always known and believed: “The greatest thing you’ll ever learn, is just to love and be loved in return” and I’m honored to have had that with him.
Nothing but love always.