There is only darkness in hate but in love there is light.
I admit I was dreading it, the first Valentine’s day since you left. Try as I might to ignore it, I couldn’t. Because even a simple trip to Rite Aide to pick up a tube of toothpaste reminded me with rows of heart shaped candies, teddy bears saying I love you and an army of hallmark cards leaping out at me, that Valentine’s day was coming. Now, I know the real reason for this “official” day of love is the economy, because without it how else could they justify the ridiculous mark up for roses, but I have to admit I’m a sucker for it and there’s nothing that gave me more joy than seeing the smile on your face when you saw your Valentine’s day roses.
But this year there would be no you to send flowers to, plan a dinner date for, hold hands with and cuddle with at the end of the day. As February draws near there is so much love being thrown in my face I have no choice but to face the hard truth, being single sucks. But I’m also determined not to let anyone know how I truly fell, so I soldier on smiling and laughing while crying on the inside. And I’m good at it, as far as anyone looking at me knows I’m alright. But I’m not and even the strongest of men wouldn’t mind a shoulder to lean on every now and then, but my façade says I don’t need one. So, it up to me to right the ship by myself and let me tell you that’s not easy.
Nevertheless, I went to work. First, I took a step back and looked at the multitude of family and friends who love me, are always there for me and would never leave me alone. I realized that romantic relationship come and go but family and friends…well they’re not going anywhere. Second, I resolved not too give up hope. Because once hope is gone any chance of finding happiness goes with it. My life is a journey and each day represents a new step and each new step represents new possibilities. One day that next step will lead me to the happiness I’m seeking. But I’ll only get there if I have the strength to take that next step. Third I said to myself you can’t hide from love. Bob Marley once said “The truth is, everyone is going to hurt you. You just got to find the ones worth suffering for. So, while you may have hurt me, there is someone out there worth suffering for.
So, I guess being single doesn’t suck after-all and you know what? Valentine’s Day is going to be a happy occasion for me, even without you. Because I have family, friends and the hope that the right one is out there and one day I will find her.
I used to but now I never let our breakup define myself self-worth.
I put so much of myself into us that when you walked away it broke me, made me think that I was a failure and that no one would ever love me. But that was simply not true because I’m a giving man, a loving partner and I have a kind heart and just because you didn’t see that does not mean I am not worthy of love, it only means you weren’t ready for it
I used to but now I never dwell in the past.
I do not run, hide, or pretend we never existed. I loved you with all my heart and while you couldn’t give me that love in return I have let the pain of losing you go. Today you are but a part of my story, a lesson learned. One that I shall grow and gain strength from. Because life exist in the here and now and so do I.
I used to but now I never wish for you to come back.
I recognize now that you simply couldn’t comprehend the basic principle that having someone like me in your life is a good thing and as such logic dictates you were never worthy of me in the first
It was a cold January moment and as I was getting ready for work Queen was emanating from my radio
Each morning I get up I die a little
Can barely stand on my feet
Take a look in the mirror and cry
Lord what you’re doing to me
I have spent all my years in believing you
But I just can’t get no relief,
Can anybody find me somebody to love?
I thought to myself you know when Freddie Mercury wrote those words he probably didn’t realize just how many people he was speaking for. People like me who find themselves alone at this time of the year. Sure, I survived going to the family Thanksgiving dinner solo and answering the dreaded question of when I am going to settle down. Then I made it through that empty feeling of waking up on Christmas morning with no one to smile or hug, and say I love you to as they unwrapped their gift. New Year’s Eve quickly followed and of course there was no special person to kiss as the clock struck midnight. I did it all with a smile, a smile that hid the tears that I kept to myself and only let the mirror see. But the calendar keeps moving and now here comes another hurdle, Valentine’s day. It’s seemingly everywhere. Go to the drug store and there are heart shaped boxes of chocolate and teddy bears with I love you sweaters everywhere. Turn on the radio and television and I swear if I hear one more commercial for 1-800-Flowers or Kay Jewelers and their annoying little jingle, every kiss begins with K, I’m going to scream. Even my e-mail account gets in on the fun with a reminder from 1-800-Flowers that Valentine’s day is coming up and I should make it a special one for her by placing my order early this year.
I thought I would be over her by now. I did everything I was supposed to. I focused on myself. dropped a few pounds, brought some new clothes, followed all the self-help books right down to the letter, hell I even stopped going to that psychic who I hoped would tell me that she was coming back. Ask anyone and they would tell you that I’m getting better and I would tell them don’t even think about her anymore. But when I’m alone in my thoughts she is all I can think of.
Why? Why did she leave? Didn’t I show her how much I loved her? Didn’t she tell me she loved me? Freddie Mercury was right, I just can’t get no relief. I don’t understand, is it so much to ask to have someone’s hand to hold, lips to kiss, someone to lay down with every night and wake to every morning, someone to love? In many ways my life seems empty and I wonder will it ever not be. But despite all the heartbreak I do feel myself getting a little stronger each day and when I look in the mirror and see my tears I try to remember who I am and what I can give. I try to remember that I do have someone to love, myself. Now I can’t pretend that remembering that makes all the pain go away but hopefully it will help me understand that one day I’ll have two people to love myself and someone special.
I’ve never been a morning person and this morning was no different. Groggy eyed I stared into the mirror as I brushed my teeth when something strange happened, the reflection in the mirror appeared to be talking to me.
Have you ever regretted falling in love? Wished you never met her?
I rubbed my eyes and thought okay I didn’t have anything to drink last night and I know I’m tired but this can’t possibly be happening. Then the reflection asked again.
Have you ever regretted falling in love?
Alright I’ll play along, I mean if nothing else this will be a good story to tell my therapist. So, I looked in the mirror and said no not at all. Why not? The reflection asked I mean you were really hurt, you’re in therapy, that last relationship really took a toll on you. Yes, it did I replied I was hurt and I’m not ashamed of being in therapy it’s been really good for me actually. But the moment didn’t break me. Didn’t it? Asked the reflection. No It didn’t I said because I’ve come to realize that moment is but one moment along a longer journey I am on, and I will not be deterred by just one moment. I will continue my journey unafraid of what lies ahead, confident that one day it will lead me to my true love. So, I say again no I have never regretted falling in love. With that the reflection said great I was just checking to make sure you still believed in love because someone out there believes in it too and one day you’re going to find each other. Oh and by the way I’d keep this conversation between you and me, tell your therapist and they just might think you’re losing it.
As I look back now I guess I owe you an apology. An apology for being so mad when you turned and walked away from us. What I really should have been was thankful.
Confused? Don’t be, it simple really.
You see I committed my heart to you, assumed you really meant it when you said you loved me, and that we would always be together. That day you left I can’t lie it hurt, hurt like hell. Would I be wrong to say you never really loved me? Maybe, I don’t know, I guess in your own way you thought you did. But the truth for me is that I would have been cheating myself if I had settled for you.
Well it’s been some time since that day you walked away, and I have had time to reflect and heal and out of that came this realization; I’m a catch. Now maybe you couldn’t see it but trust me when I tell you others do.
You see I recognize now that I’m not that perfect man you were looking for, if he even exists. But what I am is a man who will always be there for the one I love. A man who will always respect and treat my woman like a queen and the woman that I have committed my heart to now appreciates that and loves me for who I am. She is accepting of me for me, imperfections and all, just as I am of her. We do this because we realize that a relationship is seldom two perfect people finding each other, it’s two imperfect people finding each other and are willing to work together to make each other better. I suspect one day you’ll find someone new and fool them until you can’t. But I wish you only happiness, like everyone you deserve to be happy. Sadly, though I suspect you’ll never find that happiness until you learn what true love is, hopefully one day you will. In the meantime good luck and thank you again for walking away.
It’s in the mornings when I can still feel you lying next to me, I reach out to pull you closer, because when you were in my arms nothing else mattered. But mornings are nothing more than a dream now and you’re not here and you don’t love me anymore.
You looked right in my eyes and told me you loved me, that you wanted to grow old with me. I trusted you with my heart and you broke it. You made me bitter and unwilling to open my heart to anyone for fear of getting hurt again.
My friends, family and co-workers would tell me to move on. Get back out there they would say. It could be worst you could be (fill in the blank) they would say. I knew all of this and I certainly didn’t wake up every day and decide today is yet another day to be miserable. I wanted to be the happy person they knew again. But I was hurting and trying to find my way back home, but for some of us the road is longer than the rest.
As I traveled the road back I tried to put on a brave face I would tell the world there are plenty of fish in the sea, I’m better off without you, this is for the best I’ll find someone who truly loves me. But I didn’t believe it you were my fish and I wanted you back. The hardest part of it all is that I believed you truly loved me and deep down, the thing I didn’t want to admit, I still wanted to believe that you did.
I would walk down the street mesmerized by couples holding hands, I could only think about your hand in mine and each time I thought it I broke inside a little bit more. I started to notice the people in restaurants eating alone, sitting on the park benches by themselves and even if they weren’t, and they probably weren’t, I thought they were depressed and lonely and then I thought my goodness that’s me. When I would get home, I would sit down and start crying, all the emotion that I had buried all day, all the questions I had rushing in. How could you go from asking me to promise I would never leave you to leaving me in a matter of days? Why were you so unwilling to try and work it out? How did we go from planning a life together to nothing in a blink of an eye? What’s wrong with me, other couples have problems greater than ours were yet they find a way to work it out, but you just walked away from me. Why?
BUT ALL THAT WAS THEN, THIS IS NOW
I traveled the long road of despair, depression, self-doubts, and bitterness and with the help of family, friends, and co-workers I reemerged the person I was before you but somehow better. The journey was difficult, oh was it difficult, but it was worth it. I realized that sometimes you must look despair squarely in the eye so that you can find yourself. Now I understand the truth and that is while you made me happy you were not the key to my happiness. I realized that while I was looking for love it was always all around me from my family, friends, and co-workers but most importantly with-in myself. Gone was my fear of falling in love again because I may get hurt and in its place was the resolve to find the person with intellect, beauty, and the heart to love me as much as I love her. The woman to grow old with.
Today I no longer wonder what’s wrong with me but understand that many relationships come to an end not because of one person but because both parties have simply outgrown it, even if one person doesn’t realize it at the time. When it ends I’ll take each relationship as a lesson and embrace the imprint it leaves on me, because it is a part of me. I will take the good in each and cherish it and the bad in each and discard it. Not so easy to do, trust me I know, but with the help of family, friends, and co-workers I have found the strength to do it.
Days weeks months, that’s how long I told the world I didn’t even think about you anymore. But that was a lie and whenever I let my guard down you were there in my memories. Reminding me of the time we walked down that street, ate at that restaurant, listened to that song, or saw that movie. I would do my best to push you out, but I couldn’t, the memory of us and what we were was too strong and it hurt, it hurt a lot.
There have been others since you, they’ve come and gone, none lasted for very long. I would asked myself why? Was I subconsciously compared them to you? Was I being too protective of my heart? Was I building a wall around it, so no one could ever walk away from and break it again? The truth is I was doing all those things and more
But time has a funny way of healing you. For me it was a daily grind and I came to realize that trying to forget someone you loved as much as I loved you is… well it’s impossible. But I got a little stronger each day and slowly I began to remember who I was before you and I started picked up the pieces. Slowly and meticulously I put them back together. The scar where you once resided in my heart still a vivid reminder of us. But not a symbol of pain anymore.
Today I’m strong enough to remember the good and bad and the love we shared. The thought of you is no longer painful, no longer an obstacle to my moving forward. Now when I remember what we once had it brings a smile to my face. I guess that is because deep down there will always be that special place that you occupy in my heart and I’m okay with that because I’m strong enough to remember you now.
Hurt left an indelible scar on my soul.
I cannot run from it.
I cannot hide from it.
I cannot pretend it does not exist.
It has become a part in who I am and what I will become.
So, I will not hide from it,
I will embrace it.
I will learn from it.
I will gain strength from it.
I will grow from it.
The scar will not be a symbol of my pain.
The scar will be a symbol of my survival.
The scar will be a symbol of my strength.
The scar will be a symbol of my rebirth.
Hurt may have left an indelible scar on my soul
but it can not stop me from moving forward no regrets, no remorse
You hesitated for a second then looked right in my eye and said: “To tell you the truth I don’t remember” and just like that you were gone.
In poker it’s called the art of the bluff. the best hand doesn’t always win. Play the hand right and you can force a player with a better hand to walk away simply by playing confidently. However, the risk is great. If the person sitting across from you doesn’t walk away, calls your bluff and pushes their chips to the center of the table… well cards don’t lie, and the best hand wins and you loses everything.
But you offered a completely different take on the bluff, didn’t you? You pretended to be all in and there was no risk at all. Because when I called your bluff and fell in love with you I lost everything. Because you really didn’t put anything in the middle, did you? Only I did, I put my heart in the middle and just like in poker the cards didn’t lie and in this game of love my heart flush lost.
Losing it all was devastating, after all you lied to you. Looked me right in the eyes and told me you loved me, that you wanted to spend the rest of your life with me and silly me I believed it Well played your bluff almost broke me, but it’s didn’t. It was simply one bad hand not the beginning of my end. Love is a gamble and I’m willing to take a chance again. Willing to put my heart back on the table again to someone who I will barely know and trust that they aren’t bluffing and are ready to give their heart back to me. I won’t play it safe, afraid to put to get back in the game. Because there’s an old poker that says you can’t lose what you don’t put in the middle, but you can’t win much either. Now unquestionably I would never get hurt again playing it safe. But I’ll also never know the feeling of waking up and looking over at the person next to me with a smile knowing that I’m going to grow old with them, that I would do anything for them and that they would do anything for me. So yeah, I called your bluff and lost, it’s ok a lot of people have done the same thing but like them I’ll lick my wounds, give my heart a moment to mend and then cash back into the game. Because after all I can’t win at the game of love if I don’t play the game of love