A few weeks ago, I came to the conclusion that I do not love unconditionally. I love, and I love fiercely. Although I may come across as aloof and detached, I care immensely for friends, family, and the elusive partner.
One thing that’s for sure, though? I’m too hard-headed to stay hopelessly in love with someone that disrespects me. I mourn the loss of comfort and familiarity and the fictional future I hoped for when these things happen, and I can stay in that phase for a long time. It happened when I was in high school that way, and no good came of it. In my “adult” life, I have had my share of heartbreak–as faithful readers probably know. I hate being hurt, and I tend to internalize the other person’s actions for awhile. At some point, however, something happens that flips a switch–whether it’s an internal realization or an external influence–and I find stability somehow.
When I found out a person I had fallen for was going behind my back, making me look like a fool, it shut off that romantic love. What had been, in my eyes, inimitable was that way because it was false. I wouldn’t trade in the time I spent with that person for anything, but I will always be disappointed in the reality of the situation. This was someone who had awoken a resonance I didn’t know existed. But, on the other hand, this person also disrespected me completely.
When that happened, I felt sorry for him. It pained me to know that he placed no value on himself or the relationship. And most of all, I felt sorry that he had utterly ruined all chances of romantic reconciliation with me. I’m too good to go back to something like that, even if I hoped with all my might that reality could somehow shift and change the course of events.
Maybe in another lifetime.
When a person devalues me that much, I cannot let myself be in love with him any longer. So yes, I loved him, but in his words: “it’s not enough.” In hindsight, it never was and never will be enough. Not because of any shortcoming of my own–like he may have made me believe–but because of the lack of integrity and respect on his end. Upon further examination, I clued in on the mind games and realized I was very, very lucky to have had something so sudden and blatant tell me, “This is not the guy for you because he’s juggling other women and lying about it.”
Funny how that works.
There was no question of waiting anymore. There was no more wondering if he would change his mind and sweep me off my feet in a chivalrous show of romance and self-sacrifice. That book closed because I determined that I deserved a real love story, one that I am still waiting for.
In the meantime, I’m learning to be alone. For the first time, I am single and happy with who I am as a whole person. I believe strongly in my personality, my abilities, and my goals. Forgive me if it sounds like I’m bragging–because really, I am–but I finally believe with all my heart that I am great. I continue to learn and grow, even if the valleys are incredibly daunting, but I’m making it.
I’m doing it my way. And it will stay that way unconditionally.