This story was submitted by Shanise of Charlotte, NC in support of our “Black Girl Mental Health” series. Sis we love that you have embraced your authenticity and rediscovered you.
Have you ever hit a brick wall in life? Something so traumatic and overwhelming you just don’t know how to move on from it? It can be breaking up with your partner, failing a class, “coming out the closet”, or being treated unfairly. You’ve talked to your friends about the issue but you just can’t move on from the incident. It’s the number one thing you talk about all the time and it consumes your life. Has this been you? Well it has certainly been me and my breaking point was ending a relationship.
Sis, I had my whole life planned out. We were together for a few years and decided to make it a forever thing. Shortly after, we slowly started drifting apart. From my perspective we merely experienced a disagreement that we would recover from. All of a sudden she told me that she didn’t want anything to do with me.
Just like that, all our years together went down the drain. And the worst part is, she couldn’t really tell me why. There was much silence and confusion. Eventually, I found out that she found someone else that better met her needs. Simply put she didn’t want to pursue a relationship with me anymore. As you can imagine, I was devastated! I didn’t know how to move on. I felt like I was alone on an island and nothing anyone said or did could make me feel better. Nothing made me happy and even the thought of getting back with her made me angry and sad.
It was at that time when I realized that I needed a reality check. I had to be my own source of happiness. So, I started taking the time to figure out what made me truly happy.
My friends recommend therapy, but if you know me you know I’m stubborn and cheap, so I didn’t want to spend the money. If only I knew then what I know now, I would have signed up for therapy immediately. I took the loonnggggg road to healing. I chose a path that hurt other people and satisfied my misery with company. I took the road where I spent many nights ugly crying in the shower or crying myself to sleep. I appeared happy on the outside but felt sad and lonely on the inside.
I didn’t know how to shake the feeling. I was looking for other women to fit the mold of what I had with my ex. I wanted a new person to be exactly like her. Some people may call that a karmic relationship, “a relationship that overwhelms you with emotion and forces you to learn lessons that help you evolve”. When I truly thought about it I realized how unhealthy that relationship was and why it was important for me to heal from it.
One day, I got up and got myself together and made it my mission to rediscover myself. I found participating in activities that I was passionate about prior to my relationship very helpful. I started getting back into sports and trying to meet people with similar interest via the meetup app.
Several months later, my new friends normalized going to therapy. It was something they practiced and incorporated into their self care routine. I decided to give it a try. It turned out to be one of the most helpful advice that pushed me towards healing.
Therapy helps you develop tools to cope with issues. It makes you dig deep, provides understanding, and teaches you how to minimize the likelihood of making the same mistakes. Therapy helped me understand my triggers, confront vulnerability and prevented me from a major downward spiral.
Sis, if you are ready to heal from heartbreak here is my advice to you:
1) Take a step back and get a better understanding of YOU
Get so comfortable with you that when people tell you things about yourself like, “you’re so stubborn,” you don’t take offense to it, you acknowledge it because you know who you are.
2) Take time for self-care
b. Take a bath
c. Spend time in nature
d. Exercise / Join a sports team
e. Take a trip
f. Say “no”
3) Find friends you can confide in
Talk to someone that can listen without judgement, empathize with you, give you sound advice, and has your best interest at heart.
4) Start living in your most authentic self
I’m sending you much love and happy healing!