This is the first in a multi-part series I’ve been working on for the last couple of months. Because there really should be a step by step guide to getting over a broken heart.
Dear Weepy Girl (or Guy),
A little while ago, you were in a relationship. You were in love. Maybe you and your guy/gal had been together for a long while. And maybe you were planning a future. Or maybe you’d only been together for a little while and you only hoped to plan a future. A little while ago, you were happy. And now you feel numb/heartbroken/alone/scared/cold.
I’m so sorry honey. It sucks. Please accept this virtual hug from a virtual stranger.
I know a little bit about being heartbroken. Eight months ago, my heart was broken. At the time, I didn’t even know pain like that existed. One minute I was extremely happy, planning a future and nurturing a partnership. And then it was gone. There would be no more plans. No more partnership. Just me and my broken heart, curled up on the cold garage floor, surrounded by boxes. Having never experienced such pain, I had no idea how to navigate my way to the other side of heartbreak. Often, as I hid in my blankets, sobbing into my pillow, I wished for a guide to tell me how to make everything stop hurting so much.
Sadly, no such guide really exists. Even in this blog series, you won’t find all the answers you need. I can’t take away the hurt, honey. But I can offer you pieces of what helped me heal my heart. Some of these steps might not work for you. Maybe this whole post will be useless to you. But maybe that’s not even the point. Maybe you just need to know that you aren’t alone right now and that you will come out on the other end of this better, stronger, and capable of great love.
So to you, heartbroken one, I offer this, my Survival Guide for the Brokenhearted series. I will curl up with you on the bathroom floor, or the cold garage floor, or huddled on the sofa. You won’t be alone. Together, we will get you through your breakup.
And you really, honestly, for suredly will be okay.
Believe me. Not too long ago I was exactly where you are. Sad, heartbroken, and completely unsure of what I was supposed to do next. And now? Now I am most assuredly happier today than I was on even the best day in my relationship.
We’ll get you there too.
Love you. Mean it.
Phase One: The Breakup Fallout
This is the hardest part. This is the part where it just happened and you can’t even believe how much your world has changed in the span of a few short moments. The only thing that worked for me during this time was crying. A lot, lot, LOT of crying. Crying into my pillows and on the phone with my sister/mom/best friend. Invest in Kleenex and don’t worry if you can’t eat a thing or even if you are eating everything in sight. This is the time for you to just nurture yourself. No calling yourself dumb or silly for being so upset. No telling yourself you should be stronger than this.
You shouldn’t be. It sucks. Cry it out, sugar.
There will be lulls in the crying though. You need something for those lulls. For me, I filled those lulls with laughter. This is where Glee comes in. I watched every single Glee episode, over and over and over again. If Glee isn’t your cup of tea (although, how could it not be?), then old episodes of Friends work just as well. How I Met Your Mother is also good. Essentially you need something cheery, mindless, and colorful. You need to see people laughing. You need to be reminded of a different emotion, something other than all-consuming sorrow and/or rage.
Whenever you feel a lull coming, set up your DVD player. Pull up an old episode of something awesome online. And then, right before you watch it, go outside for 10 minutes. I don’t care if it’s freezing, raining, dark, sunny, whatever. Go outside. Breathe in and out for as long as you can and keep repeating nurturing words to yourself. My words were, “I will wait for magic.” Over and over and over again. “I. Will. Wait. For. Magic.”
Do this, watch whatever show you want, and cry whenever you need to cry.
I’ll meet you back here for Phase Two.
Oh, also? Here are two songs that helped me during the Breakup Fallout phase. Each song perfectly captures the feeling of the breakup fallout, while also promising hope and magic to come. Listen. Believe.
Mountain Goats: Woke Up New
Garfunkel and Oates: Silver Lining