It was a year the other day.
I chose not to mark it on the day, only in private did I raise a glass to myself and said a silent self congratulations for making it this far.
I also grieved a bit that day. It was weird as I had said to myself “Don’t think about it, just ignore it, let it pass” and I couldn’t. Like that scab on your knee when you fall over as a child, and you get told the more you pick at it the slower it would heal, I kept picking. I went through old emails and found I couldn’t delete them. I read through the vile text messages we sent each other and hovered over the button to erase them and him from my phone. I found old photos I hadn’t destroyed in the initial period after it happened and stared at them wondering if his smile and the arm around my shoulder was real or just a impression of happiness to mask how awful our relationship really was.
I regularly get told off by friends for thinking about him and what happened. Not in a stern “I’m sick of this shit” way, but kind and encouraging. Telling me dragging up whats past won’t change anything but just weigh me down. They’re right I know, but I can’t help but scratch and scratch until it bleeds again.
I often wonder how long I’m allowed to grieve for that period of my life. How long am I able to rake over those pieces of 12 years and it still be fine.
We grieve forever for a person when they die. There may be periods of happiness, and then a small thing or word can remind you of them all over again. We do things to keep that person alive as if a fear we don’t will mean we lose them from our memory forever. Am I allowed to do the same with someone who hurt me so much?
I find myself talking to people about periods of my life and having to ensure that I say “my ex” when I talk about trips I’ve taken or people I’ve met. I can’t say he’s name even when I am slagging him off over drinks with friends. He’s name leaves a nasty taste in my mouth and makes me want to destroy him the way he destroyed me. I hate meeting anyone with his name or hearing of anything related to him. I avoided going to one of my favourite events of the year to avoid seeing him and his new wonderful girlfriend as I knew I wouldn’t be able to not punch them both in the mouth.
I hate feeling like this. I don’t want to grieve anymore and second guess everything I’m about to say. I don’t want to think of someone who made me so unhappy and have that dominate all my thoughts all the time. So I set myself goals;
- I will delete all the emails with his name on
- I will delete him and his text messages from my phone
- I will destroy all the photos I have of him left
- I will sell or give away the items he gave me
- I will scrub my skin clean of him
- I will not miss him anymore
- I will not wake at night in tears
- I will sleep in the middle of the bed instead of on one side
- I will not dwell on his unkind words
- I will undo the bad he did to me and my brain
- I will meet someone worthy of me
- I will not think everyone is like him
- I will be okay.
One day I will be okay. Maybe not today but soon. It won’t hurt forever and the grieving period will end.
I’ll make it out the other side, just you wait and see.