You May Have Broken My Heart, But You Didn’t Break Me

I saw you the other day while I was working. It was the first time in over four years that we crossed paths, but it was the last time you would ever hurt me. Yes, I admit it — it did hurt to see you again.

Our last interaction had been uncivilized, to say the least. I drove ten hours and arrived on your doorstep in the middle of the night to drop off your stuff, and to visit my dog for the last time. The girl you left me for — the one you swore was “just a friend” all those times we spoke on the phone while I was gone — sat in her car waiting while you rummaged through your bedroom to find my things I had left behind earlier in the fall.

I remember angry tears burning as they rolled down my face and off my chin. Each word I screamed at you flew out of my mouth like daggers, and I hoped they pierced you deep when they hit. But somehow you seemed OK. I screamed louder, trying as hard as I could to make you hurt as badly as I did. Nothing worked, so I gave up.

Now, nearly five years later, you have the audacity to show your face again, pretending we never meant anything to each other. A part of me wanted to tell you to go screw yourself, like I did all those years ago when you broke my heart so selfishly. Because it did hurt.

It hurt to feel my entire world cave in when the one person I needed most chose to abandon me in my darkest days. It hurt to be yanked further into depression, my feet cemented to the floor as the room filled with water. It hurt to bear the weight on my chest, my lungs collapsing from yet another panic attack. Everything hurt. Every. Single. Day.

But not anymore.

Your name doesn’t make my heart ache anymore. I don’t miss what we had anymore, because none of it was real. Seeing you won’t trigger my anxiety anymore if you ever come around again. You see, if I learned anything from having my heart broken it was this: you only have as much power over me as I allow you to. And to be honest, after so many years of letting you have that power, I’m over it – and I’m over you.

You broke my heart, and I’ve held onto that pain for too long. I’ve been bitter for too long. I’ve been angry for too long. I’ve carried this weight for too long. So today, I’m letting you go. It’s a burden that damn near crushed me. But I’m setting myself free.

Because yeah, you may have broken my heart, but you sure as hell didn’t break me.

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