A Lesson in Leaving-See the Worth in Yourself

Leaving is a scary thing. So many thoughts and doubts run through your head; Am I making the right decision? What if I’m wrong?  What if this (relationship, he, she) can really change? What if. Such a powerful question. What if you waste numerous years of your life unhappy? What if you miss out on chances or opportunities that could change your life? What if making this decision is the best decision you have had to date? It seems like the end of the world at the time, your faced with so much, risking so much. What if, I told you that it wasn’t the end of the world and that you would make it through this coming out stronger than you have ever been?

Looking back; the way I see things now, is that if you have to contemplate leaving or the thought even crosses your mind, then you need to stop and think about the situation you are in.

Take a moment for yourself, look back on everything that you have been through with this person. Make a list of the good things, and make a list of the bad things, things you wish were different, things you don’t like. Look back at memories, while they may have been “good times”, Were they really? Were there “bad” moments in that same memory as well?

I know how it feels to constantly be battling with him (or her) and to be trying to keep a smile on your face while inside your falling apart more and more each time. It’s exhausting. There’s different kinds of abuse; mental, physical, and verbal to name a few. Every story is different but if you can recognize the signs early then you will save yourself so much hurt; mentally, emotionally and even physically in the future.

If there’s one thing I could wish for everyone, it is to never have anyone make you feel any less than you are, to only build you up higher. I wish I could save people from the hurt and pain it causes. I lost so much love for myself, I had no self confidence. I was always being compared to other girls, when we were out in public, I was never made to feel like I was the “only girl in the world” he was constantly checking out other girls and if he wasn’t then I was constantly noticing others and what they had that I didn’t…. it took a long time for me to start to love myself again and to see my own beauty. 3 years later and I am still working on it. It does a number to a person, when she/he is knocked so far down, made to feel worthless and then to have to build yourself up after.

You shouldn’t have to cry yourself to sleep every night, or not be able to remember the last time you laughed or had a genuinely good time. There shouldn’t be fights every day, shouldn’t be constantly spitting hurtful at each other. He made me someone that I would have hated today, someone I would never have wanted to be around. I started craving and living for a fight. Every day it was “I wonder what’s going to get broken today, maybe a new hole in the wall?” That’s what my life became, a constant battle. As messed up as it sounds, it was entertainment for me, the only time I was actually enjoying myself, because for those moments I was feeling something. However I started to confront him and that’s when things started getting worse. It became a “You want to act all mad and pissed off at me for no reason, You’re not just going to storm away, then text me things you don’t have the balls to say to my face, you’re going to tell me what your deal is right now and we are going to deal with this” kind of thing. Id get in his way of leaving, get up in his face, try to get him to deal with things like the man he could never be. Now let me just mention that he had a temper like a 5 year old child, and me getting in his way didn’t help at all, it was like throwing gasoline on a fire. He started pushing me around, pushing me out of his way, and he didn’t care how it ended… all he saw was red and nothing could change that.

He took everything away from me, he took me away from my friends, my family. he made himself my only friend, but at the flip of a dime he was my worst enemy. He’d say things to me that you wouldn’t even think of saying to someone you “love.” But I took it all, I just went with it, and to this day I don’t know why. Why didn’t I leave sooner? Why didn’t I leave after the first couple months when it wasn’t even off to a good start?  Why did I leave once and return?

Where it gets hard, is when you put up with their shit for so long and you finally snap, you finally can’t take it any more so you leave. But it never fails that when you actually muster up the courage to leave, they realize how much they screwed up. All of a sudden they are a “changed” person, telling you that they will change, they love you, they miss you,  they are so sorry for everything. Along with the “I cant live without you” and the suicide threats, or the so called attempts he would tell me of. It went on for months. I received at least 80 messages from him every day, from November to about May. One day, I caved. 7 months later I caved, I replied. I decided that for some reason that maybe he was serious. Maybe he did change. Maybe we could really make this work.

It didn’t. He was into harder drugs now, his life was in a worse spot than it was 7 months ago. he was still the same person. Nothing had changed, he still treated me like crap, he still called me names, belittled me, made me feel worthless. I only lasted this time for 7 months. I left again, this time it would be for good.

This time I was truly done. When I look back the first time I left, I left because I had to. Things were getting to close for comfort, in the violence sense. I don’t know and am thankful I left before I had to find out, what would have happened if I would have stayed at the time. Now, the difference the second time, I left it was because I wanted to. One thing my mom always said to me (whenever she would talk to me about the relationship and I would say “I’m just waiting for another fight, then I’ll end it”) was to never leave the relationship during or after a fight, end it when things are “fine”. That’s exactly what I did this time, it came to the point where I guess I loved him but I was not IN LOVE with him.  I didn’t feel anything when I looked at him, in fact I felt repulsed, grossed out. He was no longer an attractive man, the drugs had made him frail and he was just an ugly person inside. It became a chore to sleep together, I wasn’t happy at all when we were together. I didn’t care if he didn’t like what I was doing, I wasn’t going to loose my friends or family again. I was done spending my nights in the garage while he/they smoked weed, or did lines. I was tired of him wrecking my things, tired of being treated like shit, I finally knew I deserved so much more than what this boy would ever be able to offer me.

This time I left and I cut all ties. I once loved this child (for lack of a better word) with all my being. So it wasn’t an easy thing to do, but I had to do it, for me. It was time. I was away from him around Christmas and on vacation in Los Angeles, when I came back I found myself not excited or looking forward to seeing him. I honestly didn’t miss him and barely thought about him while I was gone, and after a week of not seeing him, I had no urge to go back… Unfortunately I needed to get my car back and few things I had left behind.

Looking back, I am surprised and proud of how strong I really was. I had cried enough during the relationship, by the time it cam to end things, I had nothing left in me, no feelings at all. I was numb. The one time I shed a couple tears was when I was getting my things, he followed me around the house as I gathered my belongings, sat on the bed, all  broken hearted and crying, asking me to stay. I kept it together until I was facing the closet, packing some things. I broke down a little, let a couple tears fall down, looking now I think only because its not easy breaking someone heart, to be the reason some is crying, but how many times and different ways had he broke me? How many times had he gone to sleep easy, while I lie there crying myself to sleep? How many times was he the reason for my tears? It was now his turn to feel the pain I felt for years. I let those tears fall, took a couple deep breaths, wiped my eyes dry, turned around and continued on leaving.

Every story is different, but what I’m hoping you can realize is that YOU CAN do it. One thing I can promise is that it gets easier. Cut all ties, that’s the most important thing, blocked his/her number, so he/she can not contact you. You don’t need to read messages or hear how s/he has changed, or will change. you don’t need to see on their social media pages how “well” they are doing, maybe how they have found someone new. You don’t need to let all that get you down. You have made the right decision and they are just going to do everything they can to try to change your mind. Delete all your pictures, destroy or get rid of all the things you kept from the relationship. All the cards, the teddy bears, anything and everything.

I did all of this and I promise it will make it much easier. After all, I knew I was over the relationship, over him even before I ended things. I didn’t need anything tempting me to return.

The mind is such a powerful, sneaky thing. The hardest times are when you are alone, your memory will try to get the best of you. Its funny how you only remember the good times when its over. When these thoughts and memories came up, try your best to outsmart yourself, when it seems as though all you can remember are these so called happy memories, force yourself to remember the bad that came along with that same memory. Or just think of all the bad things about the relationship. Keep yourself busy. I was rarely alone, I was with family, my sister, my friends, making new friends, I kept myself as busy as possible to stop myself from even having the chance to think about calling him up. When the urge comes up to call or message this person, just go do something else and soon you’ll realize you totally forgot what you were going to do. Don’t make the same mistake again. Be strong for yourself. You never know how strong you are until being strong is your only option.

It gets easier, at the beginning you will think about them a lot, its all you can think about. But the trick is that you have to take it hour by hour at first. Then the hours start to not be as hard to get through. Then you can start taking it day by day, because you’ll find they aren’t taking up all your mind anymore. It isn’t going to be immediate, or easy at first, remember to tell yourself that you are worth and deserve so more than what he (or she) can give you. Think of what you want in a relationship, and realize you don’t want what you had.

Don’t be afraid to be alone. You will not be alone forever. Its never to late to start over; whether you’re 22, 36, 43, or 55. Age is just a number and don’t let that stop you from living your life to its fullest. I see so many people stay in a bad relationship because they are scared that they will be alone, or because s/he says for the millionth time that they will change. Honey if they haven’t changed after the 3rd or 5th time, they never will…. don’t waste your time with the wrong person because you could be passing by the right one.  Don’t stay in a toxic, no good relationship just because you don’t want to be alone. Leave. Find your friends and lean on them, make new friends or reconnect with old friends. If you haven’t burnt bridges because of a relationship, if you really want to, rebuild them. I have done it and so can you. A true friend will hear what you have gone through, hear your apology, and be there.

Don’t waste another second in a life where you are unhappy, if you have tried to make things work and its just not changing or working, its okay to call it quits. Move on and start building a life you will love to wake up to every day. It starts by  learning to love yourself again, which will take some time. Learn to love yourself and to make yourself happy and it can only go up from there. Once you realize your worth, you will only allow those deserving into your life. Take this and learn from it. Use this experience to make you a better you, don’t be ashamed or hard on yourself, you are not alone.

Going through hard times makes us better people, we learn things about ourselves that we might not have known before, we learn about trust, happiness, love, strength. I wouldn’t be the person I am today nor would I be living the truly happy life I am living, loving the right people without these life lessons. Although I was a weak little girl, I am strong, independent woman now. I am a better person, I learnt to love myself and in turn found  love in someone I can not see myself without. I have learnt to see the beauty in almost every situation life throws at me. The world is a beautiful place, I want you to see it too.

If no one has told you lately; You CAN do it. You are a beautiful person, inside and out. You are destined for great things, its time you start to see that as well. I believe in you.

Always Love Yourself First, and the rest will fall into place.

Ciara

SERENITY

se·ren·i·ty

NOUN

  1. the state of being calm, peaceful, and untroubled:

    “an oasis of serenity amidst the bustling city”

It is not about being free from all the different storms we face in our lives, serenity is about finding the calm amongst the storm. Finding peace within ourselves.

A stormy past doesn’t have to affect the present or depict the future. Release what brings you suffering, find what brings you peace and hold onto it. Know that peace does not mean being in a place with no noise, no suffering, no hard work, tough decisions, tempting situations, but being in midst all those things and still be calm in your heart.

It is never to late to steer a different path in life. Maybe your past was riddled with drugs, alcohol, depression, anxiety, anything that kept you from being your true authentic self. You can always move forward, move past what is holding you from being all you can be. Learn to accept the things you can not change, your past. Find the courage within to change the things you can, your decisions, the present, your future. You’ll start to gain the wisdom in knowing the difference, know that you have the power to say no, to not take that next hit or next drink, to not let everything get you down. Start to see all the good there is your life, in the world. With every negative thought, come up with three positive things.

When the road gets tough and you find yourself at a cross road, doubting if you can go on; remember just how far you have come, all that you have faced, the battles you have won and all the fears you have over come. Then pick yourself back up, dust yourself off, hold your head up high, and march forward, knowing that you can do anything you set your mind to.

See all the potential you have. There is no one in this world like you; all your bruises, scars, battle wounds, the things you have been through, all the times you’ve been broken. You are so unique and that makes you so beautiful, inside and out. Learn to love yourself. Love yourself, be proud, of everything you have accomplished and overcome in this life. Only then will you start to see the true beauty in others, only then can you truly love someone else. Your first and last love should always be yourself. Become at peace with yourself, you are your own best friend, find the serenity, the peace, in your heart.

Sometimes to find peace within ourselves we need to forgive others. Not because they deserve to be forgiven, but because we deserve peace. Forgive them, but don’t forget. Learn from what they have done and let it go. For you. It is time for you to start finding peace within yourself.

“Peace is not something you wish for; it is something you make, something you do, something you are, and something you give away.” – John Lennon

~ Ciara

 

Swallow Your Pride

Life happens in an instant and is so unpredictable. One day its rainbows and butterflies, the next its stormy clouds and torrential downpour. Life is all to short to be wasting it on anything other than making it the happiest place you can be. After all you only get one life to live, why not do it the best? You are the creator of your future, only you have the ability to make it everything you want.

These last few months I have come to the realization that this life is way to short to spend it not talking to those “once an important part in your life” people because of past situations. Past events or conversations that went wrong and lead to the relationship falling apart. I’ve made a vow to myself to make the next year (and the many to follow) about living life to its fullest, fixing the things I have the power to fix or change, even if that means sometimes swallowing my pride.

We all need to do that by the way, swallow our pride. Make amends with our past mistakes. move forward. Learn to let go. Forgive. Don’t forget, but forgive, not for the other party but for yourself.

Why do we let petty fights or arguments ruin a Relationship? I’m talking friendships, close relationships with family and/or friends. Looking back on the reason(s) a  good relationship ended; are you able to say “Yeah, there’s no way at all that could have gone differently, there’s no way it can or could ever be fixed. It was completely logical and right the way we ended things.” If you can look back at the entire situation and HONESTLY say to yourself that you are okay never speaking to that person again, never knowing what is going on in their life, never trying to make things right between you . Than Congratulations, you made a good decision that you can be happy, without a single regret for the rest of your life. However, this is rarely and not always the case. If you still find yourself thinking or concerned about what is happening in their life, if you still go over the way things ended in your head and come up with things you could have, should have or maybe shouldn’t have said, think to yourself; “If something were to happen to this person today (knock on wood) would I be able to stand here, content with the way things ended? knowing there was absolutely nothing in the world I could have done to change things?” If you wouldn’t be able to sleep at night knowing that you could have made things differently, had you only sat down and really talked, or heaven forbid swallowed your pride for 5 minutes. Then you need to re-evaluate the situation.

All it takes is a little effort. Send that person a message, or call them up, and if they don’t reply, don’t give up right away. Try again. Try a couple different times. You let that person know exactly what you’re feeling. You tell them how you feel about the situation, about what happened. At least you can rest easy knowing that YOU have tried. All that matters at the end of the day is that you tried. You tried to reach out. You swallowed your pride and you can rest knowing that while things might not have gone as you might have planned, you tried and that’s all that really counts.

What you don’t know, is that the other person might be sitting there on the other end thinking the same thoughts, having the same feelings, thinking about how things went wrong, thinking how they would like to talk about things, maybe try to make things right. Dialing their number or sending that message might be the most nerve racking moment, but it could lead to such beautiful things, that could turn your life around. It is never to late to start over. Whether you have 6 months, 5 years, 10, 20, 30 years of history, its never to late to try and make it all right.

It will all start with a crucial conversation, however, I cant stress enough that the situation needs to be handled like mature, reasonable adults. This isn’t the time to place blame, to get mad or yell, or a time to point fingers. This is a time when you  need to sit down together, and just lay it all on the table. And I mean ALL of it. Tell the person sitting across from you how they made you feel, what your thoughts were and currently are on the whole situation, maybe what you were going through at the time, say anything and everything  that you need to get off your chest. (Remember, to stay calm and collected, be respectful and mindful of your words) Let your guard down. This is a person you were once so close with and you should be able to be vulnerable in front of them (however hard or awkward it might feel) Listen. Don’t interrupt. Don’t just hear that they say, Listen to the words, process them, try to understand their side of the story. This situation that you guys went through was not one sided. You both contributed to the downward spiral of your relationship. Most of importantly, don’t get angry about something they say, if maybe they interpreted something differently than you did.  We are humans, we are all different, we all read situations differently. Remember that. No one is perfect. You are coming together to solve some past issues not to get everyone all heated about past events. We cant change these events but we can learn from them.

This conversation doesn’t mean that you will be best friends right away or maybe ever again, or that the relationship will return to exactly the way it was. Maybe this will lead to a better relationship. Whatever the case may be, it is supposed to give you a sense of peace. So that you can return home, continue on with your life without dwelling over that part of the past. The best thing that will come out of this is a lesson. Maybe you’ll realize the things you were or are still doing wrong, things you can personally change. We are not the same people we were a year ago, 6 months ago, even a month ago. We are constantly growing and learning new things about ourselves, our lives, hopes, dreams, like I said no one is perfect, meaning there is always room for growth.

Learn to let go. Let go of things you can not change, of mistakes you have made and realize it is OK to make mistakes and that you will still make mistakes in the future. Remember to that everyone makes mistakes. This is how we learn important life lessons. Do not hold someone’s past mistakes over their head. I promise your life will be so much better once you stop dwelling over past events and change or try to fix the things you can. It might only take that one crucial, meaningful conversation, to lead to a better, happier future for yourself.

What I want everyone to realize is how fast life goes by. One day you wake up and before you know its been 5 years since you’ve talked to someone who used to be such an important part of your life. All because of something which at the time seemed like the end of the world, like such a huge deal, when in reality it was a misunderstanding that got blown way out of proportion. A lack of communication. Whatever the reason, don’t wait to try to fix things until its too late. Try your best to live a life with no regrets. Swallow your pride every once in a while. I promise it will be worth it in the long run, whether that’s a day, week, month or year from now. You’ll look back and be thankful. One day you’ll realize how much better your life is, notice the less stress you have to deal with. There’s no point in stressing over things you can change.

Make the change today, take the steps to your happier future.

Feel free to share your experiences with me, with others.

May all the luck, strength and courage be yours,

-Ciara

 

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