Lesson of Heartbreak

I’ve been blessed with a very fortunate life. But like everyone else out there, I’ve had my share of hardships and demons to battle with. I’ve been through the death of close friends, been bullied to the point of misery, hurt my self-esteem repeatedly, and endured other painful life events growing up. But all those things were easy to handle when compared to the pain of heartbreak. Perhaps I just have an extra fragile heart, or maybe that’s one area that I never could quite control or master. Regardless, heartache is something that I find incredibly difficult to handle and there are moments when I think that I’m really going to fall apart.

During a time when your heart has been hurt, the pain can grow very dark. Often, your deepest insecurities and fears from every bad experience of your past decides to reappear in your life. Suddenly, you find yourself acting or thinking crazy thoughts. You are not yourself and at times you feel out of control. Emotions take over. You helplessly watch yourself transform into a person you never thought you’d be. But, hurt people hurt people. And when we are in pain, a common reaction is to inflict pain on others – especially the one you thought you’d live happily ever after with. This only deepens your own pain and adds to a vicious energy cycle. Nobody wins. Everyone hurts.

In moments of clarity, I realize that I may not be able to control the sadness, the missing, or the wave of tears flooding down my face. But I can control my behaviour. I can control my integrity. I have that power. I can choose to continue the pain cycle, or I can act according to my values. I can choose fear or I can choose love.

You’d think one would get better at breakups after going through a few. In all honesty, it doesn’t get easier. But you do get wiser. And you do get stronger. And when the darkness and pain subsides, you do realize that the person was brought in to your life to teach you a lesson. Then it’s your choice to grow from that or repeat the same relationship and issues with another person – continuing your karma.

And isn’t that just the lesson of life? The universe throws curveballs at you – when you least expect it. And you make a choice. On the surface, you may feel like you lack control or that you are powerless, but really, the picture is yours to paint. You have the power to choose each time – to get up, to grow, to be better, or to accumulate hate, anger and darkness.

So my biggest lesson of heartbreak: choose integrity.

Cry until you have no tears left inside you. Talk to people you feel safe with. Try to remember the good, even when the bad keeps trying to take center stage. Have faith that when one door closes it’s because another is meant to open. Let the emotions pour out of you – feel them, embrace them, set them free. But no matter what you do, don’t forget your integrity. Because even in the darkest moments, integrity is the one thing that is yours – that you own. And no one, can take that away from you.

Photo credit: c.zwerg

4 Comments

  • Reply November 7, 2011

    Tasha

    Amy, how would you define integrity in this context?

    I define integrity as “consistency of character” or “what you do when no one else is paying attention”….I also believe how we deal with hardships (especially heart break) is a true testament to our character.

    Pushing through emotional strife is probably one of the most challenging things we have to deal with as emotional creatures, but it is also the most rewarding and enlightening experience.

    I just recently stumbled upon your blog. You are truly inspiring. Thank you 🙂

  • Amy
    Reply November 7, 2011

    Amy

    Tasha, you took the words right out of my mouth. Integrity is being consistent, being accountable, having follow-through. There is no such thing as having integrity just some of the time – you either have integrity, or you don’t.

    I also agree with your definition of “what you do when no one else is paying attention”. You act according to your values and use integrity and morals as a compass, you do this because this is the way you choose to do life. Not because you are trying to get a reward or some kudos – to be incented by that would make your actions inauthentic, and really, just an act.

    Thank you for reading and for your thoughtful comments. =)

  • Reply November 16, 2011

    a.

    As someone that is going through a messy divorce this resonated with me. Thank you.

  • Reply November 13, 2013

    Lisa

    Dear Amy,
    I just found your blog today and I admire your point of life. Im currently going through my first breakup. It was so hard for me to handle the situation. I am a very introvert person and havent showed nor talked about my feelings a lot. He had two relationships, one for 7 years and the other one for 2 years. He was very caring, mature and most of all, he did everything for me to make me happy. He loved me.
    I struggled with myself because there was something that blocked me that I couldnt show him how much he meant to me. We were together for 1 year and a half and in the end he lost hope for a relationship according to his expactations and he ended it. Compared to what he gave me during this time I didnt even give him half of it. He knew this was my first true relationship and he was patient all the time. But somehow I couldnt manage to show him enough affection. We both went through a hard time and he even doubted if he made the right decision. After some weeks and a lot of conversations I decided to fight to proof him I could give him what he wanted and deserved. We spent a night and a day together and after that day he told me that his feelings had fade.. Neither did he know it could happend so fast because he couldnt give me the love he used to have. At night I thought I couldnt bear this pain. From time to time I still think how a amazing person he is and how I could let him slip away. He was everything you could wished for in a boyfriend..

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