I have always questioned the idea of learning to love someone. It is as if it is something unnatural or foreign to us as human beings.
We love our parents, siblings, friends and family members, and make sacrifices to keep them in our lives. Yet, somehow, we see love as an entirely different ballgame with someone with whom we are intimate and plan on spending our lives with.
Sure, it is a different type of love and a life partner is someone with whom you plan to share everything, but loving someone and being loved by someone is the easy part.
I mean, who doesn't love the idea of having someone who is loyal, reliable and will stick by your side through thick and thin for the rest of your life?
Sure, there isn’t always a guaranteed happy ending, but the security you feel with this person at the time is one of the best feelings in the world.
The notion of letting go of someone with whom you have so much history and a long, exciting future really is the hardest part about participating in the game of love.
You see, we are born to love. It makes our souls happy and our hearts smile, and if it is the right person, giving your love to him or her really isn't something we must "learn" to do as if it is a craft that needs to be perfected.
Love is imperfect; it can be messy, it can be conflicting and it can be everything in-between. But ironically, we feel most content with our lives when we have it.
Letting go, on the other hand, well, that is something far less natural and far more confronting.
All of a sudden, the future you planned in your imagination must be forgotten. You are left with nothing but the sad reality that you can no longer be together, regardless of how much you already miss your partner.
You start to think about what you could have done differently or how you could have possibly made it work. But, once again, you are forced to stare reality in the face and realize it clearly wasn't meant to be.
Learning to let go of what we know is not right for us; it is something that we must learn to do if we want to allow something better to come our way.
It is usually months and months of back and forth, full of temptation and disappointment, until you are forced to comprehend that it is time to put that chapter of your life in the past.
Unfortunately, the memories are the worst part. It seems as though everything in this world is capable of reminding you of the true joy you felt when you were with this person.
You catch yourself smiling or even laughing as your mind recalls a hilarious memory you two shared.
But immediately following, you feel a sense of complete emptiness as you remember those memories will remain just that: a memory.
Telling yourself repeatedly to "let go" really does nothing when it comes to getting over a failed relationship. It is literally impossible to stop yourself from recalling certain events and wondering about all of the "what ifs."
We cannot expect ourselves to simply shake it off in the early days of our new reality. Yet, we must retain trust that to let go of someone we loved is not an overnight epiphany, but a process.
After all, we mourn the losses of loved ones who have passed, but we fail to realize that although this loved one may not have passed away, we must still mourn the loss of no longer having him or her in our lives, in that same way.
Allowing yourself to feel the disappointment, the betrayal and the overall loss of that person will eventually allow those feelings to pass.
With time, those feelings will be replaced with new feelings of excitement, freedom and anticipation for your new future with someone else.
During the process of letting go of a person we loved so dearly and who impacted our lives in a big way, we realize all we still have left to offer someone.
It is a process that allows us to imagine a new future for ourselves, and to not allow ourselves to hold onto our old versions of what made us happy.
The art of letting go is forever a work in progress, as we will forever remember what we shared with the people we loved. We will forever have those memories tucked away until new memories with new people overshadow the old ones.
As life flies by, we will come to realize that there are certain people you are meant to love and be with, but not all of them are meant to stay in your life forever.
People will come and go, and eventually, we will share the love, which once came so naturally, with someone new, some day.