This is Gospel (If You Love Me, Let Me Go)

Three reasons why I chose this title:

  1. I lalalove this song and I know I’m so behind on the bandwagon but it’s beautiful
  2. I feel like this song and the lyrics are pretty indicative of how I feel regarding Ed’s breakup and also how I feel mentally sometimes
  3. Gospels are where pastors go to preach and I feel like I do a fair share of preaching (whether that’s good or bad) over here so it was kind of ironic

Anywho. I heard this song for the first time a few weeks ago, put it on a playlist with a few other songs from Panic! as well as other artists, and woke up with it in my head this morning. Aside from it being a beautifully composed musical piece, the meaning strikes a chord with me. I don’t want to insinuate that I felt trapped in my relationship with Ed at all, because I didn’t. I have enough willpower and self respect to know when I’m trapped in a relationship that isn’t good for me and while it took me awhile to come to that conclusion, I did get there and I did what was so hard for me to do. There were times where I felt so miserable though, that I wanted to scream “if you love me let me go” because there were some times where I felt like I was getting dragged along. And I don’t think I recognized that until I heard the song, but it makes me want to scream at myself and a little bit at Ed because I don’t think that’s fair. I shouldn’t have had to feel like that. But, I try to learn from my mistakes and not regret anything (especially because there was a point of time where Ed made me SO happy, so I can’t regret something that brought me such joy).

The other reason this song reminds me of myself is because there are nights (and days, admittedly) where I want to call him up and apologize and make everything better. I know that that would be a terrible decision because this is truly what’s best for me (and him, too, I think) but there’s a part of me that aches to have him back. I find myself looking at pictures and videos that we took throughout our relationship and suffering with a huge pit of regret in my stomach. However, I know that I haven’t given myself nearly enough time to explore other options and live for myself yet, so I have to give it time. 

Do I believe that Ed and I will get back together? I haven’t the slightest clue. I don’t think we will be able to get back to where we were, but I do miss his friendship and companionship. He was my best friend for a long time, so going from having him there constantly to quitting cold turkey (sorry for the bad analogy) has been hard. I think not being able to vent to him or talk to him has been harder than not being able to kiss him or cuddle him. There’s something to be said for dating your best friend. 

I’m not sad. I’m just a little confused about how my heart is feeling versus how my head is feeling. I’ve always been one to follow my heart, so following my head is a learning experience all in itself. 

More later. I’m watching Grey’s Anatomy with the kids I nanny for right now and obviously I need to focus on that. 😉

xoxo

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“You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.”

I know, that quote is totally unoriginal and I probably could have done a better job with getting your attention.  But, alas, here you are!  This quote has certainly stuck with me over the past few months as I’ve gone through so many unexpected changes in a relatively short amount of time.

I addressed this in my previous blog post, but on June 10th, Ed and I’s relationship, 10 days short of 1.5 years, came to an end.  I was the one who facilitated the break up, but I think I had been pushed to calling it quits for awhile before I actually had the nerve to end it.  There was so much that influenced how, when, where, and why I broke up with him.  The most frequently asked question I’ve received in the two months since is simply, “why?”  Honestly, this is the hardest question to answer.  There were so many factors that played into my decision.  I had been feeling like I was on the receiving end of an undetermined amount of empty promises for the last quarter of our relationship; I wasn’t sure that Ed would be the only man to make me as happy as he did, without the constant bickering and compromising on things that I shouldn’t have had to sacrifice; my 5 year plan was vastly different than his was and would have ultimately ended in my sacrificing things that I’m passionate about (getting married and starting a family young).  Alongside the big issues were smaller ones like feeling as though I wasn’t as big of a priority as I felt like I deserved to be – this is NOT to say that I expect to be tended to 24/7, but rather that I would constantly be put on the back burner to his friends, skateboarding, and work.

There were nights where we fought so loudly that I woke my roommate up from the other side of the wall, nights where I didn’t have the courage or energy to muster myself from my bed for fear that I would burst into tears, nights spent with him where I wished I was back at school.  And on the flip side, there were nights where I could picture doing whatever it was that we were doing for the rest of our lives and being so content.  Days spent with his family, evenings spent with our friends, phone calls and text messages professing our love for one another, and so many times where we sat and talked about how our future would look.  I think, looking back on it now, that I had on my rose colored glasses for a good majority of our relationship.  Whether that’s something that I should be ashamed of or impressed by, I’m not sure at this point.  I do know that there are days where I take my memories and experiences and thrive from everything I’ve learned both in the year and a half spent with him and the past two months being away, but there are also days where I want to take everything back and scream at the younger version of me, “GUARD YOUR HEART.  BE SMART.  LISTEN TO MOM AND DAD,” but I don’t think that either of these feelings are totally fair.  While it’s important to learn from mistakes and experiences, it’s also important to know which is a mistake and which is an experience and try not to confuse the two in the future.

I know this post makes it seem like I was trapped in a miserable relationship for the better part of two years, and I want to be 100% clear that that’s not how it was at all.  When Ed and I were good, it was as good as anything I’ve ever known.  I had someone who appreciated me for everything that I was and maybe even a little more at times, someone who loved me unconditionally and unapologetically, and someone who made me believe in the good in people again.  Above all, Ed made me feel beautiful.  That’s one of the most important things I can stress to people who ask me for relationship advice: if your significant other doesn’t make you feel beautiful without question, there’s probably something missing.  It just so happened that there was something missing in my relationship, too.  Sometimes, it happens.  I’m a firm believer in the fact that everything happens for a reason and also that if it’s meant to be, it will be.  Pretty much, those sayings (and a few others) have been playing in my head like a record.  I know it was hard for Ed and I both to walk away from something that seemed to be working well enough, but I had to ask myself if I was willing to settle for “good enough” at 19.  Ultimately, it wasn’t something I felt like I had to do at this point in my life.

I haven’t spoken to him in great length since the break up – we communicated briefly about returning sweatshirts and the like a few weeks after I ended it, but since then we have had no communication – but I saw his mom once when I went to pick my clothes up at his house.  Saying goodbye to Ed’s family was one of the hardest things I had to do, and it also made it 10x more real in my mind.  I didn’t say goodbye to Noah for a variety of reasons, mostly because I hadn’t made up my mind by the last time I saw him but also I think it’s for the best because that would have been confusing for him and extremely upsetting for me.  He made Ed and I’s happy days so much happier and I feel lucky that I got to watch him grow up, even if it was only for a little while.  I didn’t personally say goodbye to any of Ed’s family, but a few days after the 10th both his mom and sister texted me, wishing me well and saying that they’d miss me and that I was good for Ed.  I thought I had wrapped up my emotions for awhile until I got his mom’s text and then everything unraveled again for awhile.  I had formed such an amazing connection with his family, but especially with his mom, so saying goodbye to someone I really cared about (and I know she cared about me as much) was so hard, and is something that I get emotional about if I think too hard about it.

Still, there was nothing harder than saying goodbye to Ed.  Some days, it still doesn’t feel real; kind of like the past year and a half was some sort of subconscious dream that I was observing instead of actually participating in.  It’s weird to think that the person I thought I was going to spend the rest of my life with might actually never speak with me again.  However, I did something that I needed to do for myself – I was selfish, yes, but I would have cheated myself out of being 100% confident and happy going further if I hadn’t drawn the line.  Do I wish I had never fallen in love with Ed?  Some days, I do, but only because it still hurts a little.  I wrote a prose piece years ago about how it’s okay to be sad after you’re the one who did the ending (attached below!) but sometimes it’s still hard to remember.

When I’m in doubt, I think of the confidence and pride that my mother has for me; she is undoubtedly sure that I’m on my path to greatness, and I’m so thankful that she’s going through this journey with me and has picked me up and carried me when I no longer could.  I’m certainly blessed with the best family and friends anyone could ask for, and while this summer hasn’t especially gone as planned, I don’t think I would change anything.

Be proud of yourself for being brave.

xoxotumblr_n67lhveiff1rpnc2po1_1280

College: Spring Term

I know I already posted tonight but I’m going out of town for two days starting tomorrow and so I wanted to get ahead (as if that makes up for my lack of posting for a WHOLE YEAR)!

Spring Term was all sorts of wonderful.  I stayed close with Tay, Adam, and AJ and continued to cultivate my friendship with Dominique next door.  We spend so many nights in Tay and my room just laughing and being silly.  She’s really someone that I’m glad I got to know.  Maintaining friendships was something that came as more difficult for me than I anticipated.  I had a huge falling out with my best friend from all the way back n sophomore year of high school in the beginning of Winter Term, and we took some time apart from each other to do a little bit of growing on our own (thankfully we have since made up and really are closer than ever, something that I am more grateful for than I think even she knows).  It was hard for me to find my footing apart from her and my other high school best friend who was at the University of Iowa, balancing her hated for her school as well as her long distance relationship.  I felt alone for a little while, and then realized that I have so many people who love me and want the best for me, so I promptly stopped feeling sorry for myself and embraced the ability that I was given to find myself – and I think I didn’t do too badly of a job.

In addition to cultivating my friendships, I added a second major!!! I KNOW, look at me go! At the beginning of the term, I decided to add radio to my class list and began to DJ for two hours every Friday night and Saturday morning.  Almost immediately, I was hooked.  (Thanks, Adam)!  Instead of keeping it as a hobby, I decided to pursue it further and am really pleased with the options that are open to me.  As a double major in poly sci and broadcast communications, I have such a wide variety of potential career paths and internships available to me, plus my background in theatre has given me a confidence that many of my peers don’t possess immediately when they’re thrown on air.  Admittedly, I still get MAD butterflies when the “ON AIR” sign flashes red, but the rush of pride I get when listeners call in to tell me they enjoy what I have to say is so immense that I’ll take the butterflies anytime.  Also, it’s so fun to listen to my mom brag to everyone (literally everyone) that her daughter has a radio show.  It makes me happy knowing that she’s proud of me.

Despite some drama involving someone my friend group used to hang out with, Spring Term was mostly smooth sailing.  I worked hard on my grades and buckled down in Sonata.  I was elected as the Social Media Consultant on the Exec Board for the 2016-17 school year and I was so incredibly proud of myself 🙂  It’s still a huge high point in my life. Ed and I found ourselves arguing more and more, however, and almost called it quits a few times.  It got to the point where I think I was holding onto something that wasn’t there anymore – this is certainly not to say that he didn’t love me anymore or that I didn’t love him.  I had more love in my heart for him than I knew possible; he was just evolving into someone that I didn’t know.  In all fairness, I have changed too.  But where I think that my change is for the better, I wasn’t always so confident with his.  We fought about important things and stupid things just the same, and it was taking a toll on me and everyone around me.  I have my mom and Taylor to thank for keeping me sane in those few weeks of crazy emotions…I don’t know what I would have done if they hadn’t stepped up and held me up when all I so badly wanted was to admit defeat and let my sadness overtake me.  I began to think for myself and make decisions that I was proud of.  This isn’t to say that I wasn’t proud of myself before, but I began to take control and not let him manipulate things like when I was finished hanging out with my friends so he could pick me up, or how long I could hang out with Adam for until it got uncomfortable (which is never, ever did).

Spring Term were some of the most emotionally taxing 10 weeks I’ve ever been through, but they were for sure my favorite 10 weeks of college thus far.  I got home from school on June 8th and not two hours later I was dying to go back.

I suppose that this really belongs in a summer entry, but I’ll include it because it had been a long time coming.  On June 10th, I ended Ed and I’s relationship, 12 days before our 1.5 year anniversary.  It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, without a doubt.  Essentially, I wasn’t confident that the man he was when I broke up with him was one that I wanted to or could spend the rest of my life with; he was worlds different from the man I fell in love with.  And I did still love him when we ended things, and I think a part of me will always love him.  He was my first great love; but that’s the thing.  I want to have many great loves and while I could see a future with Ed, I think at this point I’m too young to settle down without even trying to explore what’s out there!  It has been some of the most emotional days and weeks since the breakup, and I think I’ve been all over the emotion spectrum.  I’m so thankful for my wonderful friends and family who put up with my incessant tears after the initial break up…it felt like I didn’t stop crying for three days.  No one ever got mad or fed up with me though, and I really am blessed to have such a wonderful support system.  Every piece of advice I’ve gotten since the break up is just that I did the right thing, I’m in for a wonderful experience, and that I’m supported.  One of the women I babysit for, a close friend of my mom’s for 3 years or so, told me “be proud of yourself for being brave,” and that brought me to tears.  Since then, that’s been something that I’ve tried to remember when things get hard and I think I’ve made a horrible mistake.  So far, it’s been a different road than I anticipated taking maybe 6 months ago, but it has been a road full of opportunity and experience, and for that I am grateful.

I think I’ll make a separate blog post about how the break up went and how I’m doing almost 2 months since I’ve seen him, but right now I’m absolutely cashed.  Thanks for letting me ramble, and I’ll see y’all in a few short days!

xoxo

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Dominique, Taylor, and I cheering Tay on at her cheer showcase!

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Adam visited me & chatted on my radio show one Friday night – I didn’t stop laughing the whole evening. 🙂

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Sonata Problem at NIU, opening for the Huskie Hunks.  We sang a 3 piece set and made so many lovely friends that night!

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For Taylor’s 19th birthday, our dysfunctional friend group went to the Riverwalk at 11 pm and WADED in the ice cold water as the clock hit midnight…gotta ring it in big for Tay’s last teenage year!

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The winsome threesome at Springfest.  We didn’t know it then, but we have plans to hang those license plates up in our dorm room this year 🙂

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Me, Noah, and Ed at the Morton Arboretum one Sunday afternoon.  This was probably the Last Good Day, although we didn’t know it then.  I look disgusting in the picture but it makes my heart happy.  Ed and I took pictures of just the two of us but this one is my favorite because Noah was begging to get in the picture, and as soon as Ed’s mom took the camera and started snapping, he was distracted by the frog statues.  Kids, man. 😉

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My lovely lovely friend Haley, who is going through Sonata with me as a first year as well.  So grateful for her talented self!