Letting go has never been easy for me, not since I was a child. I hold on to people, memories, thoughts, feelings so tightly that they become imprinted on my soul… long after people have forgotten about me.

I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to let go. Unfinished business? Words that were never said? I learned many years ago that sometimes we have to find a different type of closure than the one that we crave.

I met someone a few months ago and things just didn’t work out. We wanted different things, and we didn’t connect with the world in a way that we could relate. We had a nasty dispute but kept in weak contact for months after.

Truth be told, he was kind of a jerk to me. He would be hours late for our dates with terrible excuses.  We spent an amazing Sunday afternoon together in bed… and then he completely forgot my birthday the next day. The last time I saw him he told me that he was trying to sleep with other women in addition to me.

What kept me going? The fact that the guy was depressed as fuck and completely empty. I felt a moral obligation to help him.  He told me once that he rides a relationship “like a wave” until it hits that high. Because that emotional and adrenaline highs were the only thing in his life that mades him happy. The simple things didn’t.

What. The. Fuck.

I walked out romantically but stayed around as a friend keeping an eye on him to make sure he was ok. It’s not like he needed me. Or cared much for me more than another human being in this world. But I cared. I cared a lot.

Not that caring is bad, but I asked myself why I cared so much about the well-being of someone who could have easily replaced me with anything. It dawned on me recently that this difficulty I have in letting go stemmed from some insecurity of mine. The fear of disappointment? The fear of hurting someone? The loss of a connection?

Whatever it is, negativity can sometimes come from holding on too hard… it doesn’t allow for your hands to be free. Letting go is a freeing thing… freeing you heart and your mind. Why hold on to connections that were what they were and will never be what you think they could have been? Why keep people in your life that couldn’t appreciate whatever it is you have to offer someone? Why keep trying? Why?

The fact is that everyone has their own journeys, their own paths. You intersect sometimes but then continue to run perpendicular without ever intertwining again. You are like strangers in a busy subway, bumping shoulders, making eye contact briefly, and then hustling to get your trains.

So here’s to letting go. Letting go of connections, disappointments, whispered words, feelings of vulnerability. Here’s to moving on and learning our lessons of self-worth. Here’s to living.

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