A Post-Breakup Trip to the Bahamas


By Deborah

I was able to maintain my nothing-but-love attitude, with a wide open heart for about 12 hours upon my return to Sacramento. Coming home was like jumping into a pool of memories and pain. It’s hard to enjoy a casual float.

Today I had this strange urge to read old email exchanges with ex-boyfriends. It was oddly reassuring. I felt no longing or heartbreak for these men who once controlled my heartstrings like reins on a horse. It reminded me that, painful as it seems, one day I would also look at this relationship in a similar light.

I also had another realization. My therapist succinctly diagnosed me with the pain of detaching from my primary attachment relationship. This makes sense. At times I swore I felt the ripping, the brute physical pain of it all. And today, after the walk down memory lane with the exes, I sought out some couples photos of me and him. I looked at them and there was another emotion there. Something so sad, but not because it activated the fear, sadness and loneliness trigger, but rather because it didn’t. It was immediately apparent that at least some detaching had taken place. I felt like I was looking at wax figurines. People that existed in some time and place but no longer. Replicas that unknowing observers might confuse as living.

I started out today with yoga. The one thing that has a really high success rate to make me breathe when all I want to do is replay terrible scenarios in my head that I have created. That are fiction. Him with a new woman. Me running into them. Me and him fighting about something. Me not doing this right. Appearing to be cruel or unkind or pitiful. During class, as my mind was spinning off into orbit, the teacher chimed in with this directive, like a sweet gift, “Be brave. Experience everything.”

So that’s where I am. Where once I was so focused on figuring it out. Knowing where I’ll be and when and with who and how I will emerge from this cocoon of pain, I am now trying to remind myself to experience everything. Be here in this moment. All of the suffering is important. The deep dark reds of it and the lighter shades that remind of me of brighter days. Days that come and go with no reliability, but that bring you back to the person that you were, before your breakup and the shining new you that is waiting a little bit further down the road.

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I am a writer, reader, lawyer, lover of the mountains and things that inspire. I am also, most recently, the owner of a broken heart and slightly shattered life plan. My hunt for work that is more inspiring and less stressful and the breakup of a three year relationship with the man I believed I was going to marry coincided perfectly. This is my journey through. May it speak to your experience and help you, too, find a way to let the light in.