I was that girl, that girl who fell in love with a boy at 16, and saw forever in his eyes.
"This is who I'm going to marry," I'd say to myself. We would outlast those other high school relationships that didn't survive the first year of college. We were looked at with those, "Damn, y'all still together?!" faces. We'd eventually grow older and went to separate but nearby colleges, but that still couldn't keep us apart.
Hell, growing apart didn't keep us apart.
As I grew up, I knew we were both changing into who we were meant to be as individuals, but I couldn't get over what I believed to be true. Plus, with all the on and off break ups and drama, I'd viewed myself as the girl that put in work to "save" my relationship, and thereby secured my future. I was the ride or die, “holding it down" type of girl. Boy, did I learn the hard way that what God has in store for you is completely different from your own plans.
I was at my lowest with him, but I was so comfortable with that low-life (figuratively and literally), that I didn't want more for myself. I was insecure, and he'd made sure I stayed that way. I felt like this is who/what I needed to hold on to.
My thought was as long as I had someone and wasn't alone, I was good.
I have always admired older couples who'd been together since their teenage years. That was the life to me, having a partner in life that has been with you through all the awkward stages with you and had loved you the entire time.
I didn't want to know my reality, and my reality was that I was scared of the unknown. And honestly scared of just letting go. I knew this person was no longer “the one" for me. My family and friends knew it too. So months after he and I broke up – which included a break from sex, social media, and a few other things – I gave myself time to concentrate on myself and the things I wanted. I wrote, studied the word, visited TD Jakes' The Potters House, and got my life. I also got inspired by Sarah Jakes' story, prayed, and finally, the big sigh of relief came.
And that sigh was my sign that it was time for me to move forward.
About seven months later, God literally brought a man into my life. I wasn't even looking, but there he was. I fell in love and it's still going strong. But one day, on a random date night with my new man, I scrolled down my timeline on social media and learned that my ex was getting married the following day. The guy I once saw forever with, the guy I stayed in a relationship with for ten years, the same guy I walked away from in April, was engaged in December and married that following June.
And I cried.
I became that girl that gives someone their all for years only to be the afterthought of the guy who'd married the next chick six months later. Apparently, that's a more common occurrence than I had thought.
But I had to let go of that hurt. I had to put on my big girl panties and realize that God makes no mistakes. And those mistakes I had made in the past were trials and tribulations, which turned into testimonies. What I thought I'd lost, I gained in so many other ways.
After I had let go and literally let God, blessings were pouring in from all directions. A new job with a $25k increase in salary, I'm driving my dream car, and most importantly, I met the man of my dreams - won't He do it?
Aside from the material blessings and my new love, I thank God for the personal growth I experienced. And I cry because God blessed me with self-love and self-worth. I realized my value. This did nothing but made me stronger. With God, my family, and Beyonce's Lemonade album, I knew I would come up on top!
And I'm still growing. I'm only 27. There's still growth to come.
I just wanted to share my story and encourage other women that have similar stories that they too will come through this. No matter how embarrassing, hurtful, painful a situation might be, it doesn't define you. It's how you rise above it and handle it that does! You are a fighter. You are who you say you are!
So don't let that loser in your past get the best of you. Know your worth! I know that bed looks cozy and that ice cream is calling your name but don't fall into that trap of feeling sorry for yourself. Get up, work out, and kick that sadness to the curve!
Hang in there, loves.
Have you ever been trapped in a relationship more so by the idea of love than anything else? How did you break free and move forward? How did you stop being afraid of being alone? Share with us below.
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