Why The Hardest Goodbyes Are The Ones You Didn't Get To Say

by Paul Hudson

Closure -- I didn’t really understand what that meant until recently.

I’ve heard people talk about it. I’m relatively sure it’s a recurring theme amongst romantic dramas and comedies, but to me, it was some sort of abstract concept.

People have tried to explain the concept of “getting closure” to me. It’s supposedly closing the door on a relationship.

How is it done? Apparently no one actually knows. And this is when I decided I can never accept anyone else’s definition of closure -- it’s a definition lacking reason.

The whole thing was rather disappointing to me, as it seemed to give those experiencing it such relief.

But how does one chase after that which he or she can’t understand? How can you look for closure when you have no idea what it is you’re looking for?

What I came to understand is that closure comes in different shapes and sizes. For some, it’s much easier.

For others, it’s much more difficult. It really depends on how close and connected you and your ex used to be.

It depends on how much he or she influenced your life and how much love you shared. It depends on how and why the relationship ended.

Lastly, but not least importantly, it depends on whether or not you actually said goodbye.

The hardest goodbyes are the ones that never actually happened -- because you’re still holding on.

You’re still holding on because you’re afraid to let go.

It doesn’t mean you’re weak -- unless, of course, you’re holding on for the wrong reasons. The human mind is a tricky thing; sometimes it convinces us we love those who hurt us most.

The pain and drama excites us, makes us feel more alive, more… everything.

There are, on the other hand, good reasons to hold on to someone from your past. Sometimes we meet the right person at the wrong time in our lives.

Sometimes we make the mistake of not realizing how amazing he or she was and how amazing the relationship could have been.

If you dated amazing people in your past, then 1. it shouldn’t be easy to let go and 2. good for you; you should be proud.

Now the bad news: holding on to someone who has basically removed him or herself from your life will make things much more difficult for you.

The worst part is, more often than not, letting go entirely isn’t an option. This person was -- once upon a time -- such an incredible force in your life that he or she has become a part of you. This person is with you for good.

If you never said goodbye, never allowed yourself to let go, your mind will remain focused on the person you once loved.

You never let go because you still love him or her. It happens. But you need to -- for a second -- consider the possibility that the way you feel goes beyond romantic love.

That it may go beyond all those fuzzy feelings this person still manages to make you feel on occasion.

You may very well love him or her on a deeper level -- a level that is separate from you and your emotions. The greatest of loves is to love another as a human being.

You should be happy you know someone whom you believe to be such an amazing individual.

The fact that you love him or her in a romantic sense does make things more exciting, but it will also focus your mind in a direction that could lead to more pain.

Regardless of whether you actually want to move on with your life or not, your mind will gravitate toward this particular individual.

Sometimes more. Sometimes less, but your thoughts will likely do so for a very long time -- possibly for the rest of your days.

Learn to accept the way you feel and possibly even enjoy it. Even the saddest of memories bring with them the shadow of happier times.

The good news is you don’t need to say goodbye in order to get closure.

For me, finding closure was nothing more than coming to a better understanding of how I feel and the situation that I found myself in.

It isn’t negative or hurtful in nature. It isn’t closing the door on someone I loved. It isn’t even moving on with my life and forgetting the possibility of ever getting back together.

Closure is understanding all the possibilities, all the ways that things are likely and unlikely to work out, and accepting your life and your life choices for what they are.

Closure is accepting that things may not be over, but also that they very well may be -- and it’s OK.

Feeling like you need closure is the result of indecisiveness. You’re undecided on whether you could have or should have worked harder to make things work.

It’s being undecided on where things stand. It’s being unaware of where your life will lead, and more importantly, where you want your life to lead. Needing closure is feeling lost.

We all like to make clear decisions -- they give us the illusion of having control over our lives. We want to decide something and stick with it because it makes life easier.

The issue is that when it comes to love, making that decision isn’t always possible. Sometimes, no matter how many times we try to decide, try to walk away, to move on, we always reconsider those decisions.

The truth is you don’t need to decide to say goodbye. It’s pointless, really.

You can decide this or decide that, but in the end, if you still love this person, he or she will always be an option -- even if not in reality, then in your mind.

If this is the case, then why not just accept that things are the way they are?

Maybe you can one day make things work. Maybe you can’t. We all have that one person in our lives whom we’d run to if he or she called our names.

Don’t fight it; live with it. Closure doesn’t need to be forgetting and moving on. In fact, it lasts a lot longer if you decide to accept that anything is possible -- and then let life take you where it may.

For More Of His Thoughts And Ramblings, Follow Paul Hudson On Twitter And Facebook.