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Thank you: a letter to my ex

May. 5, 2017
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As I lie here thinking about everything I’ve been wanting to say to you, unable to stop revisiting the pain you've caused me and the promises you never kept and the life that we will never live together, I’m left with only two words for you: thank you. 

Thank you for the nights I spent lying awake tears streaming down my cheeks as I questioned what I did wrong: How could you not love me anymore? Thank you for the nights I spent asking myself over and over again: Is there something wrong with me? In these silent moments, my pain overpowered ever rational thought I’ve ever had about myself. Am I just simply unloveable? 

Thank you for the chaos, for the arguments that felt like they would never end, for the put-downs and the comebacks. Thank you for being so determined to win and be right that I became convinced my voice did not matter--leaving us with only our silence.

Thank you for the undeniable distance between us, for the lies that poured out of your lips every time you dared to to utter that you loved me. For the soft moments when you took my hand gently in yours and told me that we were forever. Thank you. 

So why thank you, you ask? Because in those silent moments, in those days when the world went dark and my heart became numb, I found her. I found her in a place I had forgotten, in a land which I had never seen yet which somehow felt like home.

As she approached me, I was not afraid. Wiping the tears from eyes, she grabbed my hand and told me that it was time to make a choice. I could stay exactly where I was--or I could simply get up. 

As she pulled my hand, I rose to my feet. My body had never felt so heavy, yet in each movement parts of me began to melt away. First was my doubt, sliding from my head to the ground, freeing me from every time that I felt like I wasn’t enough. Then came my fear, moving down my ears, silencing every voice that told me nobody would ever love me. Then my pain: I grasped at my chest as I struggled to let go. Make a choice, I whispered. My hands released. Everything fell silent, and then there it was: my freedom. 

You see, my dear, in those quiet moments, in those days that melted into weeks, consumed by every regret, pained by every thought, I found me. I found me, and she was incredible. 

Thank you for teaching me about the kind of man I truly deserve, for showing me the woman I do not want to be. Thank you for letting me love you so deeply--for letting me prove to myself that I truly can. 

I remember that day when I stood up and looked into the mirror. Although I was all alone, the room felt completely filled. I gazed at myself as if it was for the very first time. When I looked at the woman staring back at me, I saw her in way that you never did. Thank you for that.

Although I cannot forget the past, I can’t help but feel grateful. And now this is the end, my love; this is where we part. Thank you for all the tears, and fears, and doubt, but today I give them back.

I give them back to you, for they were never mine to keep. This is my last gift to you, my love: I am taking my power back.

I am taking my power back.