I broke up with my fiance a few weeks ago (I counted the days up to about day 30 and then lost count). Unlike my last break up eight years ago, which was super easy, this one has been painful. I’ve cried a lot. And I’ve been through all the stages of grief in the Kubler-Ross grief cycle.
What have I learned?
Along with all the little lessons, I’ve learned three huge life-changing things:
- What I want (and what I definitely don’t want) from a relationship.
- The knowledge that I won’t ever again settle for something that’s less than what I want.
- That I’ll never again give up my sense of self in a relationship.
I naively didn’t consciously know any of these things before I met him. Or if I did, I’d forgotten them. I won’t now!
So if you’re blaming yourself after a break up, instead of thinking: “I did something wrong, I should have known better,” ask yourself how you are supposed to figure anything out about what you want if it isn’t by exposure to the experience? I notice when I look back on my life that I’ve learned from every bad experience I’ve ever lived through and everything has 100 per cent always turned out well in the end.
This is just an episode. It’s obvious I’ll be happy full-time again. In fact, right at this moment I am happy precisely because I just wrote this and put my relationship and my break up into perspective. Even though it feels important at the time, it’s only as important as my past traumas – all of which are not important at all to my current life. I can barely remember them. Even the grief after the death of a loved one fades and life gets back to normal. This definitely will.