the pain that leads to growth
Firstly I want to start by saying apologies for the lack of blog posts recently, I’ve had a lot going on in my life and I’ve felt extremely overwhelmed and didn’t know what to write about. If I was feeling so down myself, how could I help others? But that made me realise how important it is to feel pain, and that possibly through writing this it may help others who are experiencing similar things to me to understand the importance of letting yourself fully grieve, no matter how painful it may feel. I personally find a lot of the time I beat myself up thinking that I should be over this by now, or perhaps I’ve had a week where I’ve felt like I’m super positive and I’m making loads of progress, and then something happens and I go into a downward spiral and completely crash out and feel like utter shit, I then usually try to fight this pain, or distract myself so that I feel like it goes away, but the truth is, it never does. Not unless you deal with it, not unless you let yourself grieve. From recently going through a break up, like most people, I’m trying to find ways to cope with the immense amount of sadness that works its way through my body each day. I’m trying to find little ways to feel better and move on. Unfortunately due to my incapability to be able to healthily deal with negative or unpleasant emotions, I’ve tried my very best to block out my feelings of grief, devastation and heartache. This was until the other day when I absolutely crumbled. It was as if every negative feeling I’d ever had hit me like a ton of bricks all at once. I’d been distracting myself for the past few weeks being surrounded by alcohol, friends and just having fun living my life, which of course was brilliant, until I actually had to spend some time on my own and finally feel the pain that I’d so desperatley been trying to hide for weeks. Now this isn’t going to be a post where I sit and tell you how to get over your ex, and how you’re better off without them and how you’re going to be just fine all on your own and they never deserved you, because as true as that may be, we all know that doesn’t help when you feel like you’re living your life in slow motion, every day replaying memories you shared or constantly thinking of things they said to you, torturing yourself with looking at pictures and finding the reminders of their belongings scattered around your room and every day you wake up painfully waiting for the moment you can fall asleep and take a small break from thinking about the fact that person is not with you anymore… This post is me saying, you need to cry, you need to feel that pain, you need to sob until you can’t sob anymore, you can scream and shout, express all the pain and anger you feel, but you need to grieve. As with the majority of the difficult and challenging things I have experienced in life, it is the pain that pulled me through and taught me some of the most valuable things that I will hold on to for the rest of my life. I am also not for one second telling you that curling up on your sofa with a pizza and a glass of wine is not acceptable, because it totally is! Of course you should give yourself a short break from the pain, but what I’m saying here is in the long run, not dealing with your pain will not leave much room for healing.
When you’re going through heartbreak, you’ve gotta cut yourself a bit of slack. We’ve all done it, we’ve all drunk called the guy who left us, or the girl who cheated on you, or that person who broke up with you for absolutely no reason. We’ve all heard that one song that reminds us of everything we once had and makes you have a moment of ‘weakness’ and you end up sending the I miss you text. It’s easily done. Don’t beat yourself up over the fact you feel like you have taken a few steps back, you’re still grieving. I’ve done it, and I felt SO weak! I was so angry at myself. Why have I gone back to someone who left me? Why have I been the one to say I wish things could be different? Why do I even wish things could be different when you walked away? But then I remembered, I have always loved wholeheartedly, every inch of me falls in love with every inch of them, and of COURSE I can’t just switch that off in a matter of weeks. Although I believed I had to be strong, and fight through the urge to get back in contact, I had a moment of weakness, but that doesn’t mean I’m weak, that doesn’t mean all the work I’ve done so far to move on with my life has magically just erased itself just because I sent one silly message. It doesn’t mean I have any less love and respect for myself because I went back and contacted someone who couldn’t see how fabulous I was to stick around, it means I’m giving myself the love and sympathy that I need, I am being understanding of the fact I am struggling, and beating myself up over that is only going to create more pain and upset.
There would be times like I mentioned earlier, when things would pop into my head that would remind me of that particular person and make me feel sad, but this time, I just stayed with it. I stayed with this pain, I let myself feel sad. It was horrible and felt unbearable and I cried a lot and shouted a lot and repeatedly asked myself why this had to happen, but I got through it, and I felt SO much better once I’d let myself have a little meltdown, it finally made some room for a bit of healing. I’d built up all this sadness and anger inside me that I did just explode, but there was a feeling of relief once I’d let myself feel what had been trying to surface for a long time. I’m now taking a lot of time to reflect, come to terms for myself what went wrong, and the fact that the past is not going to change. I’m learning to now view this as a chapter of my life that has very sadly ended, but I have to learn to grieve and move forward in order to begin a new chapter. For me, thinking about the past has always been too painful, I don’t want to remind myself of how it all ended, or what was said or allow myself to feel again how I felt in that exact moment when my heart was broken, but I know sometimes you have to look back at things that aren’t always comfortable or pleasant to think about, because if you detach from this, you can’t get over it. Break ups teach you a lot about yourself, and perhaps now you have learned what you want in new relationships, or you have maybe recognised a pattern that made you unhappy in your past relationship and you know you won’t go for someone who creates patterns like that again because thats not what you want, or maybe you’ve learned that you have issues with trust or abandonment that possibly put a strain on your relationship and now you now can take the time to work on that, and that’s at least one positive that comes from an ending right? Everything that breaks you down is done with purpose, so that you can build yourself up stronger.
Now I’m not saying start looking through old pictures and old text messages, because that certainly will not help, don’t torture yourself. Just simply let yourself be sad, when that thought pops into your head, stay present and give that feeling validation to be there. Let these next few months become a transformation, personally I realised after my break up that I didn’t give myself enough love and attention so I craved too much from someone else, I realised that I was settling for things that didn’t nessescarily make me feel good or happy, but I was putting up with it because that was easier than dealing with the pain. All my past relationships have taught me that I have struggles with trust and abandonment, and now having time for myself like I said before I finally have the space to overcome these issues, get to the root of them and become happier. The one thing I cannot stress enough is to be kind to yourself, we all go through different stages of grieving, and it will happen in waves. For a long time I couldn’t understand why it was taking so long, there was a stupid rule I once read that said ‘it’ll take half the time that you guys were together for you to be over the breakup’ well that is a total load of bullshit. For me I’ve learned that you have to let go hundreds of times, in lots of different ways. I have always wanted everything to happen instantly, I didn’t want to have to wait in this bubble of pain whilst I was growing, I didn’t want to have to think about the fact I really was upset because it was too stressful for me, I just wanted it all to go away, but we have to be patient with ourselves and let the pain motivate us, not destroy us. It’s ok to not be where you want to be right now, moving on is difficult, grieving the loss of someone who is still alive but simply just living a new life without you is quite possibly the most heartbreaking thing i’ve ever experienced in my life. But my point is, pain leads to growth. Now is the time to move forward, to learn to love myself more, and know I deserve to be happy. When we are no longer with someone we love, we are allowed to mourn, its painful and its raw, but what we must never forget is that there are so many better things coming in our lives than anything that has been left in the past, and that we must keep pushing and grieving and feeling the pain no matter how tempting it is to try and block it out and try and convince ourselves it isn’t there.
Letting go isn’t going to be easy, but it will be worth it.
Thank you for reading, Emma <3 xxx