First and foremost, I cannot stress enough that my ex had nothing to do with breaking me.
The breakup, however, did.
Let’s start with the beginning and get to where I broke….
I wasn’t happy for a while in my relationship, but thought for so long that it could work itself out or there would be some moment where it just fizzled easily apart. Obviously, neither of those options happened, but what did was a wake up call that I had never anticipated.
I was sitting at my work station on a Friday, just doing what I did everyday. Then, bam! Old Alex appeared in my mind. And she was mad. She’s the girl I had left behind almost 4 years prior, strong and independent, badass. She began listing all the things I had sacrificed and would sacrifice in the future. All of it was true.
Now, she wasn’t entirely mean, but she definitely woke me up. I’ll yell ya, she was definitely scolding me. I could see clearer then than I had for a very, very long time… and I was horrified. I couldn’t believe what I had done and who I had let go of. I had lost who I really was… and for what? Nothing. Nothing in the world was worth giving up that person.
On top of that, I had given up many facets of my life that gave me joy and was going to continue to accept less than what I deserved. So I had not only lost myself, but I had stopped doing things I loved doing and would continue to accept less in my future than what I had previously always wanted. It would be sacrifice after sacrifice made by me and only me (hint: he wasn’t doing any of the sacrifices).
So. Obviously we know what happens next.
I got terrified and absolutely panicked after I broke up with him the first time. Yes, it took two times. After the first time, I told him specific things that needed to change. He tried for a few days, but still it was just one or two things on the list (a list of things very, very easy to do, I wouldn’t ask someone to move mountains if I knew it were impossible). A few more weeks go by and I can’t take it anymore. Old Alex was still in my head keeping me on track. I tell him I had to go and stay with my friend, if you read part one of this series you’d know, he said he loved me out loud for the second time, and I left.
Less than a week goes by and I met with him in our apartment and I ended it. He just sat there and shrugged.
It was 100% the right thing to do and I don’t regret it for a second.
Here’s where I broke…
I had thought I was going to marry this person and have kids with this person and be with him forever and always.
This was now all gone. I had set fire to the future I had planned out before me, scorched all that was my then-present. I didn’t have someone to say goodnight to every night before I went to sleep anymore. I didn’t have someone to watch tv with or eat with or just be around all the time anymore. I didn’t have my tiny family of him and his dog anymore. I didn’t have my best friend anymore. I didn’t even have a place to live anymore.
Everything changed for me. It was for the better, I knew, but it was as if I’d pulled the rug out from underneath myself which then landed me in a dark hole that I had no idea how to get out of. I didn’t know what to do. I was so lost. I woke up with major anxiety for almost a year. Things that I had just ignored for years were now things I had to live with on my own. I had to change. I had to do so much work to get to where I could fully get back to my old self and even more work to get even further past that, to make up for lost time.
The breakup caused a ripple effect of sorts. It was one action that set forth so many new obstacles as well as old wounds that needed healing and old habits that needed changing. I whittled myself down. It took years. I broke myself until I was clean and new so I could rise again. And like a phoenix from the ashes, I did, and it was worth it.