Part of life’s journey is that God awful process of finding yourself. You know that crisis period we endure in our twenties. I’m in the middle of that whirlwind. Lost, confused, hurt, full of resentment, and the only thing keeping me from falling off of the edge is Faith. I’m so lost I don’t know where to begin to talk about it.. One problem I have is that in High school I had that know it all attitude, I knew what I wanted, who I was and where I was going(or so I thought) and no one could tell me otherwise. Why is it we never listen to the advice we are given until it is too late? For those of you who are stubborn like me,we will fall a thousand times before we choose to do things a different way. For as long as I can remember, I have been on a quest for LOVE. You know that kind of love you see in Rom-Coms and Disney movies. So whenever in the position to do so, I loved hard and without cease, to the point of forgetting my own needs because I “needed” Love. I thought my efforts would be reciprocated. They rarely were. Call it the fatherless girl syndrome. But no one tells you that sometimes…well, most times… you have to have your heart broken a few times before you can experience and truly appreciate Love.
Now at 23, I have no idea who I am. I can tell you what I am. I am a 23 year old bi-racial: mother, daughter, sister, friend, ex-fiance, student, liberal, feminist, ally,… and the list goes on. But let us not get stuck on these labels, because these labels do not define me either. I recently had a conversation with a classmate, he has been dealing with issues of being recluse, he mentioned to me how since his father passed away, he’s lost sense of himself, and a sense of direction. Because of this he has tried to maintain excluded from others around him. I hear recluse, and I think spiders. I hate spiders! With that said, I also hate the idea of reclusiveness. Truthfully my biggest fear was being alone, until I had my son. He was God’s gift to me. I took it as His way of saying “Now you will never be alone.” I believe that we find ourselves through other people, so in my mind it is almost impossible to find ourselves in complete reclusiveness. Some people might say, “well thats crazy, the best way to find yourself is to spend time alone,” and that may be so for some people, but it is definitely not so for me. It takes a period of pain, being let down by those around you, being uplifted by some, betrayed, deceived, shocked, and loved by others. It is in this process of learning others for me that I have been allowed to have an awakening of myself. I have learned what I will and will not tolerate from those around me. I have learned the ways in which I do not wish to be treated so that I will not treat others in that way. I’ve learned how my depression affects those closest to me. I have learned how my actions will not always be understood and that sometimes explanation is not necessary. I’ve learned these things through my relationships with those around me and without those interactions I dont believe I’d be where I am spiritually today.
God created Eve so that Man would not be alone. In that moment, he created companionship, he gave Love a physicality that still to this day no one understands. So why is it a common defense mechanism of ours to retreat, to hide and cower and to suffer alone? Why do we so seldom reach out to others for love, emotional support, completeness? Can you ever be complete alone? And why do we long for love and desire to feel loved but seldom wish to give love? Why do we speak of Love, and not truly know Love? How can we know Love? Most importantly, how can we seek to know love if we do not seek to know God? These are just a few questions that have been on my mind for years now, honestly. I was in a long term (3 year) relationship, we were suppose to be engaged, on the way to marriage and then, things just crumbled. We say we love each other, but after three years we came to a point where we no longer knew each other. We were lost in each other, but didn’t know one another, we were young and barely knew who we were as individuals but we were forcing a relationship for the sake of my son and for the sake of love, love that we felt. We knew it was there, but we couldn’t keep it alive. Living and loving for the wrong reasons. Karma truly is a force to be reckoned with. We broke up, it was messy, unintentionally so, and therefore it was and still is painful. I’d like to say that I have moved on, but the thing about real love is that it’s forever, no matter what happens, once you really, really love someone, that love is forever. So even though I may have someone else that I hope to fall deeply in love with someday, and though I am working on it, I know that I must fall in Love with God first, and I must also accept that I will always love my ex, if I want to have any success in my next relationship.
Letting go is a process. Forgiving must become like second nature in the process of letting go, because until you forgive those who have hurt you, they will always hold control over you. You must set yourself free from the pain, the anger, the mistrust, and you must also forgive yourself. The power of forgiveness goes hand in hand with the power of Love. We are told to Love as HE loves us. God loves us soo much that though we continually disobey him, shame him, turn away from him, doubt him, curse him when we’re down and praise him while we’re up instead of continualy praising him, He sent his son to die for us that we may receive, amongst his many blessings, the blessing of forgiveness so that his greatest blessing of Eternal life may be given to us. It is that type of love and forgiveness we must learn to give and to seek.
My point is that as much as we try to avoid it, heartbreak is inevitable. Failure at anything is inevitable. We are not perfect, therefore we cannot expect our lives to move along perfectly. Relationships in our twenties, or at any time, are not guaranteed to last forever. If we do not experience at least one true heartbreak, we will never be able to appreciate our true love when he or she comes along. The same applies for success in our professional lives. For years, I have suffered from depression, allowing each small deterence and upset in my life to consume me. Everything that I had considered to be a point of failure in my life sent me down spiraling in a wicked storm of what seemed to be a neverending tornado. I blamed myself and hated myself for allowing things to go so horribly wrong. I would always say everything happens for a reason to try to overcome the consuming disappointment. However, I think that in my mind the only plausible reason was because I allowed it to be so, through my actions or my words. When truthfully, HE allowed it to be so. Depression is an evil which follows you throughout your life, but the key to overcoming it is truly cognitive. My depression defeated me because during each episode, I felt as though I had no control. I wanted someone to rescue me, to love me enough to pull me out of the storm cloud and bring me to the light. It took me long enough but I have finally realized that the responsibility was mine alone, with the help and grace of God. I am still on my journey to overcoming my depression and this recent heartbreak but I now know that His Love is real and it is true that we must love ourselves first even when it may seem impossible to do so.
It is easy to play the victim, to alow yourself to become defeated, but the truth is that all of the pain we experience in life is not purposeless. It was not happenstance, we truly reap what we sow. We plant seeds and water them in hopes to grow a beautful garden and sometimes we instead grow a bed of weeds that slowly, sometimes very quickly outgrow every beautiful thing we had previously planted in our lives. God uproots those weeds for us and at times it may feel as though he has left us with nothing when in reality, he has left us with soil to grow the new seeds he will bestow upon us. He has given us another chance to start over, to grow in a beautiful place without the unwelcomed suffocation of those unruly weeds. To overcome heartbreak, you must first accept it, do not seek revenge or attempt to place blame. Forgive those who hurt you and forgive yourself. Love yourself! Be thankful! Use your pain as motivation. Seek God for he is Love. Always give praise to God because things taken for granted often get taken.