So something completely unexpected happened yesterday.
I was attending the memorial of a friend of mine, and it really touched my heart knowing that he had touched so many lives … It was very (for lack of a better term) interesting to see so many faces from high school attending the service … And it was very somber knowing that it took something so tragic to bring us all back together.
What was unexpected was that my very first love, my first heartbreak was there. It shouldn’t have been surprising, and the fact that he was there wasn’t truly that surprising … It was just the fact that he was the first person to greet me, and hug me …
It’s been over 10 years since I saw him last, and even longer since we’d spoken. Not for lack of trying on my part, but for whatever reason he wanted nothing to do with me.
But you don’t need to know all of our history, and it’s not really something I need to share. It’s just that with our history, I was shocked that this place, out of all times and locations that we would have met, would be at my friend’s memorial.
It felt like everything just came full circle.
… Let me explain …
As I said – he was my fist love. My first heartbreak.
And only a few people have known this until now … But when he and I broke up, I hurt so bad that it was the only time in my life that I have ever truly considered suicide. Yes, I was young and hormones probably were a big part of those feelings … But I still felt it.
For several hours after that conversation, I thought about how hurt I was. How my body ached and how much pain I was in. What I could do to make it stop … What I could do to not hurt …
But in the end, I knew it wasn’t the answer. I knew then, as I know now, that there was a reason I was still alive. If I had fulfilled my purpose on this earth, then I would be taken.
I had begun thinking about those I would leave behind – what it would do to them.
I began thinking and reminding myself that I had an entire future ahead of me … And that I couldn’t let my emotions about him allow me to ruin the blessings that the future held for me …
And I made the decision to work through it. And deal. And grow.
So when I heard what had happened to my friend, that he took his own life because of PTSD … I feel like it hit me a little closer to home.
And to see the one person I have ever had cause those kinds of thoughts for myself … was … just … weird. I don’t know what word to use other than that.
And it turns out that over the last 10+ years, my ex had gone through his own personal development and realized some things about what had happened that he wanted to talk about. The biggest part being that, as he said, I didn’t deserve what had happened back then and if I could find it in my heart to fogive him that he would like to be friends.
There was a lot more to our conversation than that, but the rest doesn’t matter for what I am trying to tell you… Which are the lessons I was able to take away from the interactions I had with him yesterday.
And here’s what I learned (or was reminded of):
- Sometimes things just happen. It’s not always your fault, especially when others are involved.
- Rather than beat yourself up over why someone acts or has acted the way that they have, try to think about what YOU may have done to cause it. What YOU could have done to make it better and what you can take away to use in the future. Work on yourself to be and do better, not just for the person you may have hurt, but for the people you will meet in the future. (And most importantly for yourself.)
- Don’t allow your emotions to rule your life for any length of time. It can steal moments away from you or keep you shackled to the past.
- FORGIVE! Sometimes the things that happen to people are due to miscommunication, pride, misunderstandings, and even just because you are too inexperienced in life to know a better way to deal with things.
- STOP having conversations in your head about what you would say/do when you next saw someone. What they would say in response. First of all, you can never plan how things will go when it involves others. Second, if you continue to do this you will LIVE in that moment. “What you focus on expands.”
I guess that’s about it. I was just struck how some things can come full circle, as it were…
I don’t know what will happen from here on out. But I am really grateful that he had the courage to talk to me about it. To apologize and ask for my forgiveness.
He was a wonderful person when I knew him, and from the little bit of time I spent with him yesterday he still seems like a wonderful person. We may never be close, and that’s ok. I’m honestly just truly glad to have my friend back.