I once thought I was in love. It was a mind consuming feeling. A feeling that enamored me. I could conquer the world and burst with happiness simultaneously, I was sure of it. My daily thoughts were disbursed entirely on the thought of my relationship. We were so happy, it would surely last forever.
Except, it didn’t.
It ended terribly. A single text message and a 4+ year relationship was suddenly over.
I had defined myself by this relationship, and when it ended, I was adrift. It was like I didn’t know how to function and be by myself. I didn’t know who Lara was anymore. I had allowed myself to become so addicted to the relationship that I ignored everything else in my life. I lost friends, I lost some serious family time, and unfortunately, I also lost myself.
Going through this breakup was one of the hardest things I’ve done. Even typing that out sounds stupid and juvenile, but it was true. I had to learn how to cope with losing someone that I thought I might marry while trying to figure out who the hell I was at the same time. It didn’t help that Facebook was a thing.
It took me a couple of years to fully recover from this break up and put myself out there again.
But do we ever really recover from broken hearts?
This relationship was a long time ago. I’ve grown so much as a person since then and I know now that it never had the makings of a happily ever after. I can see clearly now, but in the moment, caught up in all the lust of a young relationship, I didn’t see anything. It was as if someone had forced rose-colored glasses on my face and it took me almost my entire young adult life to remove them.
Now that they are removed, I am terrified of accidentally putting them on again. I’ve moved on from that relationship and I hardly ever think about it anymore. But then I meet someone. They make me laugh, they make me smile, and they make me stay up late at night replaying our conversations over and over in my head.
And suddenly, that resistance comes back. I find myself extremely hesitant to let someone in.
It doesn’t matter how many years ago this happened or how many times it’s happened or how much I’ve grown, I’m still undeniably frightened of ever experiencing something like that again.
But without experiencing something like that, how could I possibly hope to grow as a person and know exactly what I want and (almost more importantly) what I don’t want?
I’m not sure if we ever truly recover from broken hearts.
Maybe we just have to find someone who is a little broken as well and then maybe we will fit perfectly together.