For several years I was trapped in a sense of naiveté that shoved me into corners, and made me feel like I had no way out. This vice was my own, and I didn’t believe anyone when they told me that I was the one at the controls. I spent way too long in a co-dependant relationship that left me with severe PTSD symptoms. I didn’t know what I was looking for.
I spent nearly three years with someone who took every chance to manipulate me. I was given lectures on pieces of my personality, and told to write lists of my wrongs — Things like: “[He] says that I washed the dishes in the wrong order… *list correct order*”, “[He, and his parents] say I need to speak more succinctly. Don’t talk unless very meaningful“. The lists infiltrated my personal writing, and over time, I began to hate writing anything. I felt so alone. I was told my friends were vapid and annoying — I was isolated.
Over the span of two years, he informed me of all my flaws. It took me over a year without him to realize that he wasn’t right. He tried so hard to isolate me, as he was isolated. He tried to tear me down so he could feel big. He hurt me to numb the pain he felt himself. I, to this day, can not fathom how, or why, someone would do this to another person, but it happened to me. Maybe because I have a rocky relationship with abuses I faced in my past, and so he saw me as a willing participant, or maybe because he knew I would take it. Either way, it’s something I live with. I thank my mother for one thing she told me, “The opposite of love is not hatred, it’s indifference”.
Ending that relationship was the best decision of my life, and perhaps I couldn’t see it at the time, but that fact is clear now. Quite quickly after that relationship ended, I found myself dating a clean cut, well mannered, handsome, man. He was two years older than me, and we made things work. I loved his family more than I could even say, but it occurred to me, over the span of a year, that maybe I didn’t love him, or he didn’t love me, as much as we, respectively, should have. We cared for each other, but we weren’t in love.
January of this year was a life changing month. I went back to school, and felt like I was, within my own life, headed in the right direction. I was looking for an easy answer for that sense of emptiness in my relationship, and realized that there was no easy answer. I ended things, and it was painful. I lost the person who, despite a lack passion for both of us, was my best friend for over a year, and I lost the people I had once considered family. It was not an easy breakup, but I have nothing bad to say about him. I have a lot of happy memories, and I even met my best friend “Larcher” because of him.
I remember walking through a hallway, on my way to my Philosophy class, in January; I put my back against the wall next to the door of the classroom, as a large group of other potential classmates gathered around and followed suit. I saw him — This tall, a little lanky, beyond handsome man stood directly across the hall from me. I was smitten. I recall just staring at him and not knowing what to think or say (as corny as that sounds). When the door opened, a stampede of the previous class’s students came stumbling out. I waited, seeing if he was going in, or waiting for someone. As it turns out, he was in the class as well.
Every class, he would stare at me. I would catch him looking at me out of the corner of his eye. Occasionally he would smile and look away, and other times he would pretend that he wasn’t looking at all. I thought he was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. I added him on Facebook, invited him to be in my study group, and finally had an excuse to talk to him. We had our first date the day before Valentine’s Day. We talked for 9.5 hours, and discussed everything from our happiest moments to our shared history of self-harm. It was an “all cards on the table” sort of date, and it was amazing. That week was the only time I can ever remember feeling little to no Fibromyalgia pain.
He is what I was looking for. He’s my person – my best friend – my family. All the things once hated about me are appreciated. I know what being in love is like now. For the first time in a very long time, I am happy. I am cared about by so many people, and I feel like I have found my place. He and I are moving to Halifax in 5 days, and I am beyond excited. I am moving away, and moving on from the events that once haunted me.
Keep your head up – No one knows what lovely things could be just around the corner.