Two nights ago, I found myself craving something sweet. I’ve removed sweets from my fridge for healthy (eating) reasons, so I had to go down to the nearest 7-11. I was waiting in line at the cashier and this radio show was on.
A woman was trying to laugh at the DJ’s jokes, but it was obvious she was going through a difficult time. Her voice cracked as she struggled to speak and there was something about her pain that moved me. I listened closely.
“Ellen, if he was listening right now, what would you say to him?”
“I…I am going to thank him for everything and..and for coming into my life, for making me happy when we were together. But I suppose he never really loved me. Why did –”
At this point, Ellen sobbed, but she soldiered on. “Why did he ever make me fall for him? Why did he even let me fall in the first place? I wish he hadn’t if he was going to leave me anyway? He just hurt me and for what? If only –”
“You know, Ellen,” the DJ interrupted gently. “Forget about blaming him or anyone. I think maybe it’s best that you remember only the good times. Regrets will only cause more bitterness, and no matter how much you go back and think about things, you can’t change the past. If I were you, I’d focus only on the good times. There’s a time for you to think things over, and then there’s also a time for you to let go.”
Before I could catch myself, I found myself nodding. “Amen to that, Mr. DJ,” I thought.
Ah, to love and then lose. To give so much of yourself to someone, and then be betrayed. To love like crazy and then realize in the end that it was all for nothing. I’m sure many of us know how this feels like. We’ve all loved and lost at some point in our lives.
The question is, have you let go and moved on? If so, how did you do it? Were you broken into a million little pieces but somehow got yourself whole again? Or… are you one of those souls still full of regret?
If you’re full of regrets, then maybe it’s time to empty your cup of bitterness because all that, my friend, causes only so much pain. You already lost in love, would you really allow yourself to lose at life, too? Surely, no one is ever worth that much?
There are those who cling to a lost love for a very long time so much so that sorrow has become their comfort zone. Perhaps you know people like that. They’re the ones who moan about their situation every day, the ones who continue to hurt themselves even when they have a choice to end all the suffering. But they can’t because sorrow has become an old friend.
Don’t be that person. It isn’t easy, I know, but like everything else in this world, we always have a choice. It may look like you don’t but you do. Oh, you really, really do.
Choosing happiness is a conscious choice. You may never feel like it but it’s always something you have to force yourself into doing.
At this point, you’re probably thinking, “Well, Annamaria, that’s easy for you to say! You’ve been in the same relationship for so many years now so who are you to say that? Have you even had your heart broken, like ever??”
Of course. Before I met my boyfriend, I had my moments, too. I was that girl that loved falling in love, mistakenly believing that it was romantic to wallow in pain for the sake of love. I wanted to be the suffering artist, too.
Damn, right? Looking back, I realize how crazy that kind of life was. You get your heart broken too many times and you begin believing that pain equals love. It was an addiction.
I remember it all like it was yesterday. But without going into detail, let me say that freedom starts from within. You dictate how you feel, what you think. It’s a lie to continue believing that our emotions and thoughts enslave us. They don’t. It all depends on the strength of your own willpower. You have to decide what you want, and then follow through.
We all want to have what we want. But the law of life dictates that we can’t always have it all. Deal with that. Accept that it’s all over. As cliche as it sounds, there really is a reason why it had to happen. With time, you’ll know why it never worked out. Why it had to work out the way it did. The reason will reveal itself to you tomorrow, in 3 months, in 10 years, who knows? But you WILL know. Sooner or later.
Remember this: somewhere in between his first hello and his final goodbye is a lesson that life wanted you to learn.
Be like that tree by the ocean. It looks lonely, no doubt battered by the elements. Typhoons may come and go; the tides smother its branches every single day but look how it has stayed strong through the years. Gnarly, sure, but its roots hold fast.
Painful lessons are the very things that make us stronger.
So to Ellen on the radio who loved and lost, and to hearts from all over the world that have been broken, I wish you well. Papa Jack, the DJ, was right: Focus on the good times.
And then let go.