I was in a relationship for over four years. Everything seemed perfect except it wasn’t. His parents did not approve and he chickened out. He broke up with no explanation except that he cannot stand up to his parents. I was extremely heavy back then and had very low self esteem. I thought this was the end of the world and that nobody will ever love me again. I tried to kill myself. But luckily, I have wonderful friends and family. It took me a while but I started working on myself. Two years later, 20 kgs lesser and I’m still not able to accept that anyone can love me for me. Mind, body et al. I met this wonderful guy in February. We’ve been going out on dates. But I think, somewhere, I’m not letting it go to the next level because I’m so scared of a broken heart. I’ve stopped putting myself out there.
Two years ago, I thought to myself, “There is no way I will fall in love again.” I didn’t have a clue who I’d fall in love with again without thinking of the eyes I fell in love with as a teenager. I didn’t know what I could do if I wasn’t able to call the same man “The Love Of My Life” for the rest of my life.
I wept. I wrote in my journal. I sang sad songs at 3 a.m. I cried some more. I cried till I fell asleep.
But I’m here. Two years later. And I am asking myself the same questions that you are asking yourself, “Do I trust myself to fall in love again? Do I trust someone else to not hurt me the same way?”
For this, you need to understand that we do not love the same way twice. We do not even love the same person the same way twice. The older we get, the more experiences we gather, the more we find our ideas of self and love changing.
Imagine yourself as a house. We build ourselves brick by brick with our stories, our experiences, our pain, our joy, the people in our lives, the people we let go in our lives, and more. Sometimes, in the process of building from the ground up, we forget to add some things that are necessary. We forget windows of an open mind, or doors to let people in. Maybe it’s the kind of experiences we have. Maybe it’s the kind of people we’ve met in the past. But, that’s who we become.
That, however, doesn’t mean that we cannot add a door to let people in. We can make this happen. Sometimes, you can start with a window. You can even start with a hole to peep through. But how do we begin to make these changes?
Honestly, no one really has an answer that doesn’t involve ripping your guts out and giving it over to someone else with all the faith you can muster. Because that’s kinda what you have to do.
Take the leap of faith. Allow yourself to be vulnerable and tell this person you have been hurt before. A person who really deserves you for the love you have to offer them will listen and understand that your trauma has shaped you but is not who you are. That is what matters.
If this person doesn’t respect your fears and your vulnerability to admit to them, maybe they’re not ready for you either. And that’s okay.
Take. Your. Time.
Healing is not a straight line upwards to happiness. It’s going to be all over the place. You might find healing by falling in love with someone else. Or on your own. Whatever you do, remember to be honest with yourself about how you feel in the moment. Trust yourself to take care of yourself in moments of heartbreak even if this doesn’t work out. And, if not, ask for help. It always works.