Stop Being Sad and Be Awesome Instead

Initially, when I decided to write this blog, it was with the intention of using my personal everyday experiences as a lesson for others. Today’s experience will probably adhere to that theme more than any of my blogs so far. If you’ve been reading my blog, you already know that a few months back I broke things off with a girl I once believed would be my future wife. You’re also likely aware that I’ve had bouts with depression in the past as well as fairly recently. Today, unfortunately, did not start out as one of my better days.

You see, the truth is, as happy and relieved as I am to be out of an abusive relationship, no matter how bad the relationship, we are all bound to remember some of the better moments. I’ve been sick for the past few days, so I’ve been sleeping quite a bit. Needless to say, my inactivity hasn’t been helping my moods much either. However, it was after passing out during the afternoon today that I ended up finding myself at my weakest. And it was all because I had a dream, an all too nice dream, about my ex.

As I said, no matter how bad the relationship, there are always bound to be a few moments that made you smile. Today, I had a dream about one of those moments. It was a flashback to when we met for the first time, to when I gave her the very first gift I would ever give her; a small, sterling silver promise ring that I bought with all the money I had at the time. The dream continued to our first kiss, a hesitant, but soft and sweet moment. Finally, the dream brought me to the scene last fall when she was going up to see her parents.

We were at the airport, she was trembling as I held her close to me. I kept whispering to her how much I loved her, how she would be alright, how she would be in my arms again real soon. It was a bittersweet moment, but it was also the moment, when we kissed each other good bye for the last time before she walked through the gate, that I was positively convinced I would go to the ends of the earth for her and that she would do the same for me.

It was the last, genuine moment where I felt like we were in love because, in the months that followed, and due to all sorts of unfortunate events, our relationship would become increasingly strained and increasingly painful for the both of us. When I woke up, all the anguish of saying good bye to her last fall and the knowledge of what came after rushed back into my head and heart like a jet-propelled freight train. For the first time since saying good bye to her for the last time, I missed her.

I sat up in my bed, contemplating how things had gone so wrong for us and wondering if there was anything I could have possibly done differently. Maybe it was due to my exhaustion, maybe my cold, maybe a combination of both plus the weight of nostalgia bearing down on me. Whatever it was, for several minutes I had forgotten all the pain and all the abuse. I forgot about the abusive screaming, the projecting, and her violent temper and genuinely believed I had lost something precious.

It’s a dangerous state of being, but I suppose that goes without saying. It’s what depression can do to you and it is always hard to fight against to get to the reality of the situation. You begin to feel guilt over things that were ultimately out of control, blaming yourself for events and actions that were never even your fault.

And as cheesy and lame as this is probably going to sound, in moments like this I’ve found myself turning more and more to the immortal words of Barney Stinson. Yeah…as if you didn’t see that coming.

whenimsadBefore this blog loses all credibility, hear me out. As simplistic, simple-minded, and overall dumb, as Barney’s motto may sound, he still has a point.

And frankly, it also takes an enormous amount of will-power to enact.

Feeling sad and upset and depressed literally sucks the life and energy out of you. You don’t want to move, you don’t want to eat, and you certainly don’t want to smile. And in moments like what I experienced early, smiling is exactly what you should force yourself to do. Article after article has been written regarding the many scientific studies that have proven the simple act of smiling, even forcing yourself to smile, can make you feel better.

But that’s only the first step. When life beats us down, smile right back at life and don’t stay down. Get up, get active, and do something you enjoy, be it reading, writing, singing out of tune, or, in my case, working out until you can hardly breathe.

Today, I managed to channel the sorrow into motivation. Each and every day I’ve decided to prove to myself in some sort of way that I am better off. While I’ve managed to get back into my work out routine that I neglected so much while being with her, today was the first day my focus went from being “getting back in shape” to “proving she lost something wonderful” and not the other way around. There is nothing wrong with that because it is important to discover one’s own self worth. It is absolutely crucial that we all discover that we are of value, we matter. And people who mistreat us and take our energy and our love and our sacrifices will never deserve us. For every push up I did, I reminded myself of just how much better off I now was. For every pull up, I admired just how far I had come on my own without the burden of being with her weighing me down. For every sit up, every leg raise, and every mile I ran, I was reminded of just how much I loved finally getting my life back, instead of being subservient to another.

And you know what? It was the best damn work out I’ve had in a long time.



There are doors that open and doors that close…

I’m not necessarily new to the whole blogging scene, but I am quite rusty. So please, bear with me. That said, I thought I would start off this blog by making an acknowledgment. An era in my life has come to a close, while a new, much brighter one has thankfully begun.

You see, for the last two years, I thought I had already entered the golden age of my personal life. I had met the girl of my dreams, or so I assumed. That’s right, I’m nothing special. Much like anyone else on this ball of dirt hurtling through the cosmos, my life became defined by the person I decided to share it with. It was a grave mistake, one that would take me a long time to figure out and one that I have only very recently come to acknowledge as the reality I created for myself.

She was supposed to be my everything. I wrote songs about her, told her I would marry her and did just about everything humanly possible to keep her satisfied with me. But there were dark moments in our relationship. I chose to ignore them, friends begged me to heed them. The truth of the matter is, I had fallen in love with someone not only extremely manipulative, but destructive, both to herself and me.

It has been two months since I opted to officially end things by severing all ties. Since then, I’ve gotten healthier physically, mentally, and emotionally, which provides evidence to the fact that a relationship does indeed affect each and every aspect of one’s life. Being with her, I had grown sluggish. She didn’t like me wasting time exercising, so I became increasingly unhealthy and, for the first time in my entire life, grew a bit of a stomach. She didn’t like me talking to certain friends and, if she wanted my attention, it was to be undivided. Needless to say, I grew increasingly anti-social. I let go of friendships I maintained for years at her request and have only now begun the rather long journey of redeeming myself to them. However, far and away the most affected area was my emotional state. Nothing pleased her for long. None of my sacrifices for her happiness or well-being were in the least bit good enough. I was terrified to speak to her regarding even the most minor concerns because she would angrily and vehemently spout abuses. Being with her, I constantly tried convincing myself I was the happiest I had ever been, when the opposite was much closer to the truth.

We became engaged. For a time, I wanted to believe that things would change for the best now that I had proposed with the ring she herself had wanted. Not even three months after, she called me up in the middle of the night angrily screaming at me over messages completely unrelated to her. But it was when she called me selfish that something finally clicked in my head.

I am not a selfish person. Even people who know me in a general sense are aware of this very simple fact. I give. I make it a point to because I wholeheartedly believe that the selfless stand to gain the most and the selfish stand to lose it all. So, as far as I was concerned, our relationship came to a close when she chose to accuse me of the one thing I consistently made a point of not being. I gave to her more than I have given to anyone else combined.

Suddenly, all of her other faults became glaringly apparent. Her outrageously violent temper, her selfish need to make everything about her, the ungrateful manner she demanded more from me all the while figuratively spitting on what I offered her. It was because of that singular moment, I was able to distance myself with much less pain than I thought conceivable. She made me feel nothing for her in an instant. After lovingly giving her my absolutely best, I now sat there knowing that I was already completely content going the rest of my life never hearing from her again.

That was the door that closed. Despite everything, she was the one person in my life who made me consider marriage. She was the only one I ever envisioned actually saying vows to and starting a family with. As empty as I was in regards to my feelings for her, I felt pain in the notion that I might never contemplate marriage again. I thought I would end up alone like I was before her.

Today, I made it a point finalizing everything. I removed her from every form of social media she was attached to, I blocked her phone number, and burned her photos. And I informed my friends. There were a few who had an inkling of what had occurred, but most wondered, asked me questions about upcoming nuptials. I thought it would be best to inform everyone all at once. My announcement was met with overwhelming support and I was reminded that never once in my life, until the day that relationship began, was I ever alone. That relationship proved to be a bigger blight on my life than anything else. I realized that for all my fear of loneliness without her, I felt the loneliest with her.

My life has made a turn for the better. I suppose the turn was so sharp, I simply could not see what was really awaiting me. As many have told me today, I deserve better. I intend to take that to heart. We humans so often have a habit of either undervaluing ourselves or, less unfortunately, overestimating our worth. My loving friends and family managed to make clear to me that I was a victim of the form, while she was guilty of the latter.

So what better moment than to start a blog about my every day life? As the say, when one door closes, another opens. I can’t wait to walk through it.