I know. It's been a long time since I've posted anything on this blog. That doesn't mean I haven't been writing, elsewhere, about things other than heartbreak. But as I mentioned in my last post, my heartbreak saga has taken a legal turn, and although there has definitely been progress in that area, I'm not at liberty to divulge details concerning the...well...details of the situation. However, I am free to offer you an update on the emotional progress I've made since I last typed the word "heartbreak" for public consumption. So....ready? Good! Here goes...
I feel better. Not great, mind you. Not amazing. Not even what you might call normal (if there is such a thing). But I have definitely taken enough steps toward the light at the end of the tunnel to have reached the startling conclusion that there actually is life after love. (Are you listening, Cher?) It's been a hell of a long haul, though, fraught with fresh hurts along the way, not to mention the occasional step backwards toward the abyss of despair into which I plummeted after my ex ended our relationship and returned to the woman who he once claimed made him so unhappy. It's been four months since the emotional apocalypse that left me so crushed and broken-hearted that there were times when I honestly would have preferred to die (painlessly) rather than face another day draped in the sadness that I allowed to envelope me. But in those four months, in which I must have cried enough tears to fill an ocean, I learned a few things about myself which, if not original or profound, are at least as important as the fact that I gave my love to a man who accepted it, enjoyed the benefits that came with it, and then tossed it away as though it were nothing when it no longer suited his purpose. And just what are those things, you ask? Well, calm down and I'll tell you.
The second thing I've learned is that being dumped by the man I loved doesn't mean that I am unworthy of being loved. Don't get me wrong. I'm nowhere near ready for another relationship. And although I did agree to go out for coffee recently with a man who made it clear that he found me "interesting", I'm still too tender to even consider dating on a regular basis (not to mention that I spent the entire time rehashing the details of my heartbreak, which, despite the perfunctorily compassionate comments he offered in return, probably made me a little less "interesting" to him by the time we finished our second cup of coffee). But even so, I've started to shake off that awful sense of being "nothing" because someone I loved chose to continue his life without me. That was one of the hardest parts of being dumped so suddenly by a man who I had made the central focus of my life. All at once, there I was, just me, alone, unattached, a solitary entity in a world in which most people define themselves by their emotional relationships to other people. Sure, I still had my children, and my friends, but my children and my friends all have partners and significant others. The things they do, the plans they make are all colored and shaped by their attachments to those other people. To be a woman with no such attachment, with no one else's needs or desires to consider when making the daily decisions of life, no one to whom I belong...well, it's a little disconcerting at this stage in my life. I mean, it's one thing to be thirty-four and single. It's a whole other sticky (and slightly icky) ball of wax to be fifty-four and on your own. But alone or not, I am still the person I was when I met him, and that person is as worthy of love now as she was then. The twist is that next time...if there is a next time...I won't make the mistake of settling for less than I deserve.
It's your heart, and even if you were foolish enough, or careless enough, or trusting enough to offer it up to someone else for safekeeping, it still belongs to you. It may have been abused, it may have been neglected, disrespected, and unfairly used, and it may have come back to you in need of some extra care and attention to make up for the rough treatment it suffered prior to the transition, but it came back whole and still beating and every bit as solid as it was before. And even if you still hurt, it will keep on beating, and as long as it does, you will never be beaten. You've heard the song a thousand times. Probably hated it more every time you heard it (I know I did). But as corny as the lyrics are, they're true. Your heart will go on...and on...and on. And that means that you...and I...will, too.