To know me, you have to read me. Otherwise, I'm just like everybody else. Without identity. Choose well.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

DABDA part 2

continuation from DABDA part 1...

When you're down, find your new happy place.

ANGER

Anger is another stage of the grieving process. Oftentimes, this is what people feel for the most part of the breakup. There are also cases where many get stuck in this stage. Therefore, a necessary process to overcome and let go. For those who have had bad breakups, they probably jumped straight through this phase. The good breakups though prove harder to bring anger out. But no matter how good the breakup was, you'll be surprised which places in your memories occassionally resurfaces the old pain and hurt that you used to shrug off to get by. You have to find them and acknowledge them or you'll end up getting caught unawares.

I had my own share of it. The Remember blog I published 2 months ago (Anger part was written on July) was an evidence of that. But I realized I wasn't finished. I had too many things to say. Too many things left unsaid. So here they go. These were the thoughts in my head back then. To the guy who did not choose me....

I hope you realize that I chose you back then. I chose you even after all the sacrifices I had to make. I still chose you. And I would have continued choosing you no matter how painful it was. No matter how much of an “Us against the world” kind of love story  we had. Because, for me, you were worth it. And yet, to you, I wasn’t. I wasn't worth a disappointed look from your family. I wasn't worth the risk, for them to actually know I exist. That's what was so hard for me to understand, to be so worthless to not even get to that point where they knew about me and made you stop seeing me. I think, I might have understood better if that was the case. But it wasn't. The minute someone started to suspect, you let me go just like that. Fears and suspicions, that was all I amounted to. 
I regret. Not about meeting you. Or the memories. Because it was meant to happen. To teach me a multitude of things about life and love. And although I wouldn't have wanted to learn it the hard way, but I did. And because I was in pain, I regretted all the memories and the friendships I've made and will break. I regretted putting my faith in someone who I thought eventually will have a little bit of fight in him. I regretted believing in the wrong person. That somehow, some tiny hope in me believed that he'd never give up on me, he'd never want to lose me, he'd never want to hurt me this much. But he did. Something I couldn't do, he did it easily. Those were the regrets I initially felt and told you during "The Last Stand". But they were temporary. What I really regret,was that, I wasn't the one who ended it. If only I knew that's how it was going to be, I would have ended it first. I regret that I wasn't strong enough to muster the courage of leaving. That I did not prepare myself to leave just like you did. But I would never leave people I love. Who has done me no wrong. It goes against my being. So everything else, I knew, was meant to happen. 
I should have known. That you were willing to leave for the “idea” that someone out there could be better for you. That there is an easier and less painful path. But is anything worth it ever really easy? I hope you also had thought that I too, have that option. I too could have chosen an easier path for myself. But I didn't. Because I am not accustomed to the easy life and easy choices. Being the iron-born we Pinoys are, we rarely are given smooth paths and uncomplicated choices. We make decisions seeking for solutions. We meet halfway and make the most out of our situations. Being the highborn your race deems they are, they seek opportunities to grow wealth and culture, then protect it, to the best of their ability. No matter who they hurt in the process. Even their own kin. Maybe because they worked so hard to reach where they are, that they do not trust to let Pinoy's or any other race destroy what kingdom or self-sufficient community they have built. Indeed, The Great Wall of China. I guess, the highborns are so accustomed to the easy life that you collapse against anything that threatens it. Which must seem fair for them, as it must have been laboriously difficult to get where they're at. That, you can give them credit for. 
I hated your twisted idea of adulthood. That choosing the easy way out and leaving someone just like that means being an adult for you. Nothing about selfishness and cowardice makes an adult. No matter how you try to rationalize your behaviour that this is what your culture dictates, that we are not right for each other, and that this has nothing to do with financial status. Becase you and I both know it has. It has to do with a lot of it. You can keep trying to delude yourself that you did this for my sake and my future, but you know it's not for me, it never was for me. You did it for yourself. For your own security and peace of mind. And I guess, I shouldn't hinder you from getting that. We all deserve security and peace. As long as we don't hurt anyone during the process. Just know that, we regular Pinoys may not have riches and bigtime connections, but we have the freedom to choose the life we want to lead, and the people we want to keep. That old friend, is true wealth and real happiness. :)

I had a hard time getting to this phase. My ex-lover was one of the best support systems I ever had. Do not take him wrongly, he was a great boyfriend, for the small things. He was just really bad for the big things. But since the small things come in the form of daily routine, finding anger proved harder than I thought. It was hard to shatter the pedestal where I put him on. The glass I had built around our little bubble. You would see it from my "Remember" blog and the thoughts above. The glass was so thick that a dent was nowhere near impossible to make. But I did it. I found it. After a month or so from the breakup, I found the hammer that helped me break that glass little by little. The glass that blinded me from his flaws and inconsistencies, the selfishness and immaturity, the painful route I travelled just to be with him. The glass of love. Do you know what that hammer was? It was in the form of a dating site. It was when someone found him on a dating site a month after the breakup. I was furious. Shakingly furious. The first layer of glass broke then. And it ricocheted cracks here and there. I was so furious I broke down at a Greenwich fastfood chain, with my dear friend who also cried with me. I couldn't care less where I was and who was looking. But that was the most painful breakdown I've ever had since the breakup. And you know what? It was the "One last cry closer to my one last cry".

You see why Anger is important? It's because it helps you break that glass. Find that hammer. There is a lot of it lying around. Talk to your friends, they will reinforce offering those hammers that you easily rebutted before and sometimes even get mad at, because you wanted them to tell you what you wanted to hear. You refused to believe he/she was wrong for you in so many levels. Not because you have different cultures and financial status, but because the other party never really wanted to make both ends meet. You were underprioritized, hidden, and a once a week thing. You weren't even part of his immediate future. You were the temporary girl. Yet you thought your ex was THE ONE. In some ways maybe, but you have to remember, those who chose to leave you and still sleep soundly at night knowing you are in so much pain, are not the ones you'd want to spend the rest of your life with. He is NOT the one, simply because he never tried to be. Simple reinforcement but effective. Little hammers that go a long way.

So when you finally find those hammers, use them. Use them with all your might. Use them everytime you remember a good memory. Because memories will want to kill you. Almost all the time. Your ex's ghost will be a bitch that will haunt you every chance it gets. They will catch you unaware and leave you in a pile of crying mess. But you can fight it. Someone once told me, that the trick to countering good memories, is to remember something bad that happened during that time too. Something you got upset about with what your ex did or thought at the time. More of this later in the depression part. But for the sake of an example, there is one hammer that has been my favorite. Whenever I go to a mall or restaurant we used to go to, and I remember our memories, I try to find something that I got upset about at that time too. Like I try to remember how he could not hold my hand, or walk side by side with me. How he kept scanning the vicinity for familiar faces before settling that it's okay to stay near me. How that made me feel like a mistress of some sort. Anxiously being hidden. All the time. I try to remember all those other memories where I am being hidden, which I had no choice but to be comfortable with so I can continue to be with him. And it works like dry wood to a flame. You get that fiery anger. Sometimes strong, sometimes not. But nevertheless, something you can work on. It's like tainting that memory so it doesn't feel dreamy and good anymore. This is going to be a painful route yes. But drastic times calls for drastic measures. Besides, this route is not gonna stay for long. Once you get to the acceptance stage, these memories will no longer sting. And therefore no longer require redirecting of your thoughts.

Although I can tell you that it took me a long time to master redirecting. But if you have trained your mind constantly, it will somehow unconciously build that pattern for you without you even realizing it. It will eventually become automatic. Again this doesn't happen overnight. More so, even when you have found that anger, you can regress back to denial or bargaining. Just remember to go back to where your last progressive state was. Go back to the last known good configuration. It's a tough cycle to get out of but you can do it. Just follow the rules. And you will be able to get there.

Side note:
What are the rules to properly move on? These are the ones I have read from articles that proved really helpful. Well, it worked for me. :) This is going to be a small part but more on this later on a different blog post.

  1. No contact rule. No stalking. In any form. Block your ex everywhere. At least for 6 months.
  2. No break up sex. I haven't done this and I have no plans to, but trust me, it won't do you any good.
  3. Mourn properly. There's what we call controlled mourning. Do the 3-month rule of no dating. Actually for me even at 4 months then, when I tried to date, I realized I still am not ready.
  4. Don't seek revenge. It's not gonna change anything.
  5. Don't rely on rebound sex. It's just gonna make you feel worse about yourself.
  6. Don't make your breakup known all over social media. In fact, if you can, stay out of it for 60 days, it would be beneficial for you. Go low profile. It's a whole lot better. For me, no one aside from family and close friends knew about our break up. My workmates realized it after 3 months. When they noticed I haven't posted anything about my used-to-be-boyfriend. In fact, i didn't even post any other thing at all. Silent FB for 3 to 4mos.
  7. Delete pictures. Throw away or give back items from your ex. They will only hold you back. You may not be able to do it right then and there like I did. But, eventually you'll do it anyway. When you realize it's necessary. 
  8. Reach out to your friends. Those who will really listen. Make them your constant chatmate so you can slowly get used to losing the constant chatter you used to have. 
  9. Hang out with your family. They're the best pain relievers.  
  10. Start getting back on your own feet. Back to the comforts of being just by yourself. You'll get there. Trust me. :)

BARGAINING

Bargaining is a tricky business. But it is something you should allow yourself to do. The question is, for how long? Bargaining is another stage of the grieving process that will make you realize you are capable of lowering yourself or swallowing your pride to some minimal or extreme extent. Nevertheless, it is part of the process and therefore something that is entirely normal to go through. Either in your head or acted upon. Some people who act tough will never allow these kind of thoughts on their head to get out from their mouth and executed by their body. They think they will have it under control. And then do it anyway when it's too late. But to us who really wants to move forward as soon as possible, some bargaining needs to be done. For your peace of mind and for closure. If you have things left unsaid, or questions left unanswered, have a one last conversation with your ex. Do not be that person who has a lot of regrets afterwards, for not being able to say everything and get hung up on all those what ifs. I would suggest to brainstorm those thoughts first with your family and friends. They will prove to be really great debaters and can either talk you out of it, or let you do it just to get it over with. I personally would want you to get it over with. Be a fool. Be weak. Be less proud and speak. But do it in a more dignified way. Do it so your ex will realize what a great person he/she is losing and ask if they're sure that leaving is what they really want. And if he's sure, if he doesn't choose you again, then leave. And don't look back. I myself had my "Last Stand" with my ex. I noted down in pieces of papers every question, every "sumbat" or reproach, and every clarification. It was one of the longest 2 and a half hours of my life. But after that, I felt better. It was the first time I was able to slowly let everything go. There were some things I forgot to say, hence my "Remember" blog and the Anger part above, but it's something I realize, back then, are thoughts better left unsaid. (That is considering he never gets to read my blogs. Haha.)

The trouble with the first few weeks of a breakup is that, your mind seems to highlight all the good things your ex-lover did. You remember all the good memories instead of the bad ones. You forget that before you broke up, you already had that resolve that he wasn't really right for you from the start. You forget all the pain and hurt he/she has caused you. The repeated inconsistencies, disappointments, and incompetence. The blatant disregard, lying, cheating, and violence (if there was any). The choking love or the lack of it. You forget how you were crying most of the time because of the wrong man. In the first few weeks, all you could think of is that, you don't care what your ex used to put you into and all you care about is that he/she comes back. Every resolve, every brainstorming you previously had with friends, every breakup plans, they all go down the drain. It's like you are in a reverse psychology experiment. Everything becomes crytal clear for you that you can excavate and then throw away all those daggers lodged so deeply just to have everything back to how your relationship used to be. That is again, perfectly normal. But do not act on it if you can help it. Because it is temporary. It's a passing phase. Although it proves really hard to not give in to this urge. So if the urge is really strong, by all means do it. Do it for your own peace of mind. Do your final bargaining. Congratulations you have reached the next level!

However this stage,  again is going to be temporary. You will eventually realize, that even if you can throw away all those daggers and swallow every bit of pride you have left, the fact that nothing in your situation or his, will have changed or no one will want to change anything, then those daggers will just come crawling back to the holes that never got healed. Old wounds heal very slow my friend. As they say, band-aids don't fix bullet holes. There is no quick fix to anything. Especially pain. If you have given it everything you've got, and worked it out with the person in every possible adjustment you can make, and still got left/cheated like that, or you chose to leave because of repeatedly irreconcilable differences, then this has nothing to do with you anymore but a lot more to do with your ex and his/her views. If that person's perspective, choices, plans, and priorities remain incompatible to yours, will bargaining ever really make a difference? It's like you're only prolonging the inevitable. You're only going back to have one last moment or moments at that. So think about this, even if they will take you back, or you will accept them back, is anything bad that happened before can never possibly happen again? Has he changed?  Is the situation gonna change? Do you both have the willingness to work on it? Or are you going to be taking the same one way roller coaster ride of pain and suffering? Unless you are certain about all of this changes, and the other party is willing to go the extra mile or start following you in the same direction you are heading, none of the bargaining offers are ever going to make a difference.

So why do this to yourself? Why go back to the things that broke you? When you finally got the chance to find what God has in store for you? As they say, the best has yet to come! Wait for that. Wait for the love of your life. Wait for the person who will be worth experiencing the joys and sorrows with. Who will continually strive to give you the life and love you deserve. When you are ready. When you have a better understanding of the future you want to have and become. You have come a long way to self-rediscovery only to break it apart piece by piece once again. If you have searched deep in your heart and you still think that having them back in your life will be the best thing to do, then by all means do it. Just don't say we didn't warn you if everything falls apart once more. At least you gave it another shot. But don't make it countless chances. For your love alone will not change a person. Their love for you will. That doesn't have to take countless chances. If they really love you and truly realized that, they will give everything they've got even with just one last chance. This is gonna be your choice my friend. And if the chances given had been wasted, you owe it to your countless miniature broken selves, to glue it back together so much better than the last time.

to be continued...