September 2018: the end of my three year relationship. It was his choice, not mine and my heart was broken.
January 2019: the happiest, healthiest and most optimistic I have been since before my relationship began.
Breakups are never easy and being left through no choice of your own feels nearly impossible to accept but from first hand experience, I can say that you will get over it and you will move on.
When my breakup first happened and my ex left, my heart physically hurt, it felt as though it was actually, physically broken. I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t sleep and I spiralled into a deep depression.
I saw no light at the end of the tunnel and was getting sick and tired of friends and family telling me that one day, I wouldn’t feel like this anymore. They kept telling me that one day, they didn’t know when but one day, I’d be completely over it. I wouldn’t love him anymore or want him anymore. They promised I’d feel nothing towards him but in the depths of my misery, I couldn’t see how that would ever happen.
Fast forward just 4 months and I can now see what they were all saying. I can now relate to what others were talking about when they said that I’d one day be able to look back and feel nothing about what we once had, I’d be able to look at him and simply see a stranger.
When a breakup first occurs, particularly when it comes out of nowhere, it’s easy to feel as though life as you know it is over and only feel negative about that. In the days immediately after the main event where you stereotypically stay in your pyjamas with the curtains shut eating junk food, you can’t see that the life you’re losing may actually be leading to one that is going to be so much better.
When in a relationship, I like to think I was a committed and caring other half, not perfect but I tried. I was there for him all the time, day and night. I wanted to see him as much as possible and as a result of that, was happy to neglect other friends and family to enable myself to spend all my time with him.
The dynamic of this relationship meant that when he decided to up and leave, I felt like I’d lost a limb. I was honestly like a lost dog. I felt like I just kind of walked through life in slow motion, I didn’t know where to go, what to do or who to speak to and I just resigned myself to the fact that I’d feel like that forever but if you’re feeling like that now, believe me when I say you won’t feel like that forever.
Regaining my independence was a gradual and almost unnoticeable process. You don’t really feel it happening but you do have to make it happen. You have to start small and build yourself up to becoming a more confident, positive and independent person.
For me, it started with just getting on with daily life. Getting out of bed, making the bed, going to work, eating and all those little daily things that have become such a challenge. Once I regained some kind of routine and normality in my life, it was then I started to create a new life for myself with the people I wanted in it.
I reconnected with friends and family I’d failed to keep contact with. I started to spend more time writing and growing my blog, Life With Ellie as well as writing for other platforms, like Huffington Post! I started going on nights out with my friends, being more spontaneous and less uptight and generally living a life I thought I never wanted but actually now love.
I never thought having my life ripped apart could actually be the start of a life that was so much fuller and more positive and I know there’ll be other people out there who have just had their hearts broken who need to hear this from someone who has been through it.
I’m not years down the line, I’m just a few months on from the worst time of my life and I can already look back and say I’m grateful for having my heart broken because I have grown and changed into a person that I personally prefer to the one I was before.
So, if you’re in the dark stages of a breakup and heartbreak, thinking that life is never going to be good again, please take my experience as comfort that with time, support from others and plenty of self-care, you will feel yourself again and you will find a new ‘normal’ that is quite possibly going to be better than the one you got so comfortable with.