Simply Solo Spotlight: How I Broke My Own Heart On My Birthday
Today’s Simply Solo Spotlight is written by Volta from Olé Volta Photography & Expressions. I’m incredibly inspired by the story Volta has shared here. Anyone who has been in a relationship that was not mutually beneficial and respectful knows the feeling of wishing you had the courage to simply choose yourself over the other person. It’s amazing how powerful love for someone else can be – so powerful, that you can lose yourself in it. Once you are done reading and commenting, please be sure to check Volta’s Tumblr page.
Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Contact me at: email@example.com.
How I Broke My Own Heart On My Birthday
I’ve wanted to write this guest post for a long time. I’ve been following Simply Solo for quite a while and though I was mostly passively reading, I was learning.
I mentioned in the title that I broke my own heart. Actually, I lied. I didn’t break it; I merely tortured it, for my heart is unbreakable. But more on that later.
Like all great love stories, it started with a simple attraction. I became attracted to a man (let’s call him Peter), and this feeling permeated for more than six months. See, because of some societal constraints, I could not pursue him openly, and even if I did, he couldn’t put himself in a position where he could respond. We belonged to an organization where he held a position of leadership, and I was a mere member. So I silently admired and pined over his intellectual persona, which seemed ever so alluring, ever so engaging.
I would spend any opportunity I got, however small, to get to know him better, to show that I was interested in finding out his aspirations. If anything, I wanted to be his friend. I wanted it badly.
Soon after his leadership role ended, I founded myself “cured” of this inexplicable crush. After all, he was much older than me, and besides, I saw him with another woman once, so even the idea of him was absurd. I had given up.
We were still members of the same organization, and actually began working on a project together. I was surprised at my apparent calm in handling our meetings, because initially I would be out of breath and have increased heart palpitations worrying over what I should say or how I should act.
Things were going great in my life. I was soon to leave and move on from that organization and start a new career. The first and only thing that was on my mind was the three week vacation to Europe I was planning to take. There was nothing that would tie me the city I lived in: lease was running out, organization commitments were coming to an end, Europe was waiting. All that was grand and fabulous, until I decided to invite Peter out for a beer …
The professional discussion soon turned into a personal one … and that night marked the beginning of our brief romantic story.
I fell for this guy right away. All those pent up feelings resurfaced at once and he seemed like the one. His brilliance amazed me. His personality attracted me immensely. We had a great connection, especially after realizing that he too had experienced feelings for me ever since he met me.
Somehow he seemed to know me immediately. He understood me like no other person ever did. We were very similar in most respects: driven, ambitious, world travelers, culture lovers.
I didn’t want and I didn’t think of the future. For a few weeks, I lived the most intense romantic moments of life. Everything with him was living life to the fullest. That was the biggest lesson I learned from him.
But he knew I had to leave. I knew I had to leave. After all, Europe was waiting. And he didn’t dare ask me to stay, even though, I think for the first time ever, I did want to stay, which was absurd to even consider.
After my illuminating and exciting European adventures, I came back to the city to visit him briefly. At that time I was living in another city, about three hours away from where he was staying. Amid our passionate encounter, he told me that he wasn’t in the least attached to me and that he didn’t see this lasting past the summer. He had clearly taken that time while I was away to distance himself from the possibility of us. To him, it was a summer fling. Nothing more. But of course, we were in the early weeks of summer and he wanted to see how things would develop and then go from there. It hurt to hear all that, but I agreed, swallowing my tears.
The next few days that followed were pure hell. I went from hopeful to hopeless in a matter of hours. I was sick of feeling so much, of being so open with my heart that I decided to drown my feelings in reason. I wanted to detach myself from the relationship, like he did. I was too quick to fall, too vulnerable to engage in such summer flings, too sensitive, and too naive to believe that this was my magical love story of which I’ve always dreamed.
I hurt. You know that pain that sprouts in the chest and the slowly travels throughout your entire body? That pain which you so desperately try to hide, but are unable to because you’ve run out of excuses for yourself? I knew what I had to do, even if it was so unbearable. I had to act because the status quo wasn’t making me any happier.
I tried to draw decision trees; I tried to be logical and cold-blooded, like him. But I was unable to suffer through it any longer. So on my birthday, I gave myself the most painful and liberating gifts of all: self-worth. I chose myself over a slight chance with a man who wasn’t even attached to me. I chose myself because I knew that I deserved a mutual relationship. I knew that I was worthy of equal attention and adoration. I was worthy of being called beautiful, yes, especially when sober.
I don’t blame Peter. I think we were just at different stages in life. I wanted someone who would want to grow with me; to me, you can never stop growing, there’s always room for evolution. He wanted a grown woman, which I was not. I had yet to fulfill my greatest dreams, while he, for the most part, had been already fully fulfilled. And no matter how much pain it brought me thinking it through, I felt much better after having ended it. My unbroken, yet tortured heart led me to a path to self-healing and self-realization.
Yes, I still remember him sometimes, but for the most part, I have grown and I have learned great lessons.
If nothing else, “being” with Peter and not having the mutual reciprocity, makes me that much more appreciate the man I am currently dating.
Copyright 2011. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.