Late last summer I suffered a wretched heartbreak (only weeks before my birthday–fun!) and simply did not know how I was going to put one foot in front of the other each day and carry on. My friends rallied, my mom rallied but it wasn't enough. I had too many memories of him. Restaurants, bars, you name it. They surrounded me everyday everywhere and were a painful reminder of my sorrow.
My mind went through the usual nonsense (i.e. I was going to forever be alone, I would never find anyone again, and so on and so on...we've all been there) and I really just felt like the pits.
That is until the day I decided that the only way through it was to face all those memories head on, so I underwent what I would call the Taking Back Tall T Tour. I'd decided to go to every restaurant and bar we'd gone to forced myself to have a meal or glass of wine–okay, that part wasn't too hard–and deal with the memory of our time there. Alone. Some places were harder than others as I found myself wiping away tears almost as soon as I entered the place, and others were more manageable. I documented the establishment and date in my notebook and just tried to enjoy the meal or glass of grapes and from time to time chatted up some folks in hopes of creating a new memory in the place.
I only shared what I was doing with a handful of close friends, and after about two months I'd hit all the places on my list. And you know what? It worked. As sad as I had been at the beginning of that journey, by the end I was an old hat at ordering a cab or sav blanc and just dealing with it. I'd read a magazine, talk to strangers, whatever I needed to do to get through it and came out a different person that the one I'd been when I'd walked in.
What's the lesson here? That no matter how awful a breakup you can get through it. You just have to find a way to deal with it so you can move on. For me, it was the Taking Back Tall T Tour. For you it might be something else. Anything less that dealing is counterintuitive and will keep you wallowing in that deep end of sorrow.
Breakups are never easy but if you remember who you are and find your own way to make it better by continuing to be good to yourself and love yourself, the pain will be lessened and ultimately eliminated. Guaranteed.