I thought it would be painful…letting you go all those years ago. I thought I would suffer, that my heart would be anguished with the loss of you, my first true love. Or worse, maybe it would stop altogether.
Maybe without you, I would’ve simply ceased to exist.
I thought I would become adrift, for you had been the anchor I had formed my identity upon, the compass I had relied on for my direction. I thought without you I would become lost, disoriented.
I had expected to taste salty tears as they fell upon lips that once spoke so fondly of you; that my head would lay on my pillow damp with tears for as many nights as the moon continued to kiss the stars.
But one day, years ago, I just knew.
I hadn’t expected such a feeling of relief as I cut the ropes that once shackled me to you. One instant of tremendous clarity. One instant, where I finally knew.
I no longer needed you.
I no longer needed your opinion of me, your affirmation nor your approval.
I no longer needed your judgements, your criticisms, your condemnations.
I no longer needed your expectations I could never meet; your hoops too high to jump through, your goal posts that shifted with every changing breeze.
I no longer needed your blame, your excuses or your justifications.
I no longer needed you pseudo love, fraught with conditions and attached with strings.
I thought I needed you. I didn’t.
I thought it would be hard to let you go. It wasn’t.
I thought I would miss you. I didn’t.
For in one instant my heart was awakened to the truth of who I was.
I was more than the lies you made me believe about myself. I was more than the look of failure in your eyes when I fell short of your demands. I was more than how worthless you made me feel. I was more than the ways you tried to break me.
I was a warrior, sculpted by the hands of creation, fashioned into being by the very hands that created the oceans and the stars and the mountains and the air.
I was strong, I was brave, I was wise. I was gentle of spirit with the heart of a lioness.
I was creative, passionate, sensitive and kind. I was of open heart and open mind. I was powerful, generous, thoughtful, daring, empathetic, raw, complex, courageous, understanding, forgiving.
I became everything you were not.
I no longer carried the shame you made me suffer under the weight of.
That shame belonged to you.
And I no longer carried my hate for you. For that would have only bound me to your darkness and gave you permission to destroy my light. It would have allowed you to stay within me, to destroy my peace, to blacken my heart with the malice that lived within you.
It would have tied me to your soul-destroying bitterness, your ugliness. It would have anchored me once more to you, who tried to drown me.
Instead, I chose to go into the world and love more fiercely, show more compassion, be more generous, offer more kindness.
I chose to forgive. For me, not you.
I chose to dis-empower hate.
I chose freedom.
I chose love.
I had stood firm upon the unshakeable truth of who I was.
I had flown to heights you had only dreamed of.
For I had let you go.
No longer was I held down by all I allowed you to be in my life.
I no longer needed you.
I was free…and I thank God for that moment of clarity.