When my ex-husband and I were separating after four years of marriage, Patti's beautiful song got me through the tragedy of separation. It could have only led to divorce because of the amount of heartbreak that I felt. I am going through my old writings and am experiencing the heart ache all over again... like it's happening right now. I am so amazed that my journals can move me like this. I'm sitting in front of this computer, listening to Patti on repeat as I read through the old memories. It could never be said of me that I did not love that man. Even now, after all the pain, I can still recall so many wonderful experiences.
There's nothing, absolutely nothing, like falling in love for the first time. He was the one that I loved without inhibition. There's only one love like that. And even though I am in a very committed relationship, ten years strong, I still recall the magic of first love along with the broken heart. The pain of that first love surely makes me who I am today. That terrible heart ache broke me down but I now know the limits of my heart.
I smirk at my writing from 13 years ago and the extreme romanticism of believing that love had no limits. It could have been my young, tender age that made me such a hopeless romantic. Strewn across so many of the pages of my journals are professions of my love for my ex-husband.
"I will love you forever"
"I will always love you."
"You will always be the only one for me."
"Long as I live... you will always be... my first love."
"Only ONE man for me."
"He owns my heart."
All these professions indicate my naivete in matters of the heart at that time. I'm no guru now but I surely do know that there are just some things that I will absolutely NOT put up with. God Bless my parents and family for standing ever so patiently as I made my way through all that hard stuff. Though they tried to prevent me from having to go through it, all they could really do is sit back and let me experience life. My heart aches even now when I think of how much love I felt for that man. He was perfection to me and yet so very flawed and dysfunctional. I was lost in a crazy cycle of highs and lows.
And in all the craziness that comes with unrequited love, the best thing that emerged from that broken relationship is a stronger me:
A me that emerged, like a butterfly, from a cocoon of doubt.
A me that needed to be broken down only to realize that I was valuable even if he didn't want me.
A me that knew that him being a broken man didn't mean that I was a broken woman.
A me that still believed in love and that someone could love me with the same intensity that I offered.
Here I am. Here I stand as a testament that I can do hard shit. Excuse the language but there's just no other way to describe it. I.CAN.DO.HARD.SHIT.