There is a rage that comes when you realize that your time has been wasted.
There is this sadness that comes when you realize someone that you love has wasted you time.
In my hindsight, and perhaps in yours, in the quiet of examining your life, you wonder how it is, why it is, your life had shifted in such a way. In the quiet of your life, you may wonder these things (I know I did):
How did I let it get this bad?
How did I let him hit me?
What is wrong with me?
In and from the vantage point of being a survivor, I can assuage that young girl who thought the worst of herself. As a survivor, I can tell that girl, that nothing is wrong with you. Nothing was ever wrong with you! There was something wrong with him! There was something broken deep down in the soul of this person whom said they love you. There was something wrong with this person that can kiss you and hate you at the same time, on the same day! Something is wrong with a person that can take the love you give, gave so freely and still hate you for it. To see how long they can push it or push you away!
I can tell this young girl, perhaps even the young woman you once were, that relationships take two people. Two people must be willing to sustain this thing they are deciding to build. When that balance shifts, with no evidence that shift will adjust itself, this is when you become the glue. You become this sustaining force for two people as one person. That’s dangerous dearest one–especially, if you know if you were to stop trying to sustain a relationship, it would end.
I can tell this young girl, perhaps even the young woman you once were, that relationships take two people. Two people must be willing to sustain this thing they are deciding to build. When that balance shifts, with no evidence that shift will adjust itself, this is when you become the glue. You become this sustaining force for two people as one person. That’s dangerous dearest one–especially, if you know if you were to stop trying to sustain a relationship, it would end!
The most devastating thing that occurs once these types of toxic relationships end, is the repair. The lonely examination, as it were. The sitting with the fact these things occurred. The screaming matches. The bruises. The lies that are used to cover up why you couldn’t go places, or go do something with certain people. The wondering if you can repair the relationships that have floundered or ended. You are left with this space where you believe life, or for a chunk of it, may be irredeemable. But they must be. Time, in its funny mercy, is still redeemable.
The redeeming power of time comes from the admittance that you now own what is left of your time. You must begin to take charge of what has happened to you (this is the hardest part–no one wants to admit to being a victim, of anything!). The other thing is to figure out what will help you become whole again. For me, it was writing. It was therapy. It was talking to someone that I could trust. It was being confronted with the fact that I was in a toxic relationship. I was a participant in a relationship that *Adam didn’t seem to want. And I had to admit, I had wasted my time.
That hurt worse than anything.
I fought to get better. Was it miraculous or instant? No. I fought to get back to writing. I fought to not got back to Adam because I was lonely. I had to be reminded I was beautiful, that I was worthy of something better than what I had been exposed to. The toxic love that I had been given. That took time–that took a couple years. I couldn’t even put pen to paper until I was apart from this relationship at least a year after it was over.
It was in a counselor’s office that I had to relive the incident that almost killed me. That I had to admit this was abusive, and I never did anything to deserve this–and me hitting him back didn’t make me less of a victim! I had to work through the tears. I had to breathe through the rage. I had to remember I was a whole person, worthy of love, before I got with him. This type of healing takes time.
Warriors, survivors, aren’t always discovered or acknowledged right away. Sometimes the most hard fought wars are the ones we don’t know about. The survivors of those wars are often the people you least suspect.
You aren’t stupid. You survived.
Let the healing come. Let it questions come so they can be answered. Let the light in. Where it may be dark now, the light will come. It will come. On day at a time.
[images.com Lancaster Independent School District and pintrest.com]