Love Your Body

It's Okay to be Alone

I don’t know how many years it took to finally realize my self-worth. Not to give everyone a deep look into my personal life, but regardless of the relationships (or almost relationships) I have had, I’m single. Not that all of them were awful, some were really great until the end. Others gave me the wrong idea about how relationships are supposed to work. Especially when it came to long-distance. And as a woman in a long-distance relationship, my favorite phrase was probably “He wouldn’t cheat on me.” And a lot of guys wouldn’t! So many people I know have great long-distance experiences. However, I was not so lucky.

You never realize what an impact that has until it’s almost too late. I was incredibly co-dependent, I lacked self-confidence, I didn’t know what to do, and a lot more that I don’t know how to describe. I had a couple short relationships and a year-long one following that weird time in my life. And while they were all great people in their own ways, I couldn’t trust them (but in case you all forgot, they shouldn’t lie to you because they know you have trust issues... where’s the logic in that?). After the year-long relationship, I decided that it might be time for me to give therapy a try. I didn’t hate going, but I didn’t enjoy it either. Each session was usually full of tears and fake laughs. A couple months in, I was starting to become a whole new person. Can I say that I would have been this person without my relationship fiascos... probably not. I think I would have been weaker without it.

When I took a break from therapy after a few months, I tried getting into a couple of relationships. But they failed. And while I was upset and hurting, I realized that I didn’t need them. I didn’t need anyone besides my family, my friends, and myself. I’m not saying I became heartless and was going to cut love out of my life. I just realized it was okay to be alone for more than a second at a time. When I came to this realization, I noticed so many changes within myself. I stopped caring as much about other peoples’ opinions, I wasn’t craving male attention (even though I don’t mind it), I was able to focus on myself and what makes me happy, and I was able to find myself in ways I wasn’t able to before.

Keep in mind, this all started my senior year of high school, and I’m currently a third of the way through my senior year of college. It took almost four years to finally find myself, and even then, I’m not 100% me. One of my favorite changes that I have noticed during this journey is: I never used to laugh. I wouldn’t laugh at funny Vines or my friends jokes, I would just get mad or annoyed. Today, however, I can spend minutes laughing at one of the dumbest TikToks I’ve ever seen. I smile when I see something nice. I feel warm inside when I’m able to help others without there being any personal incentives. I’m happy. It might not be every day, but I’m finally happy.

Moral of the story is, no matter your current status, please don’t look to others to heal yourself. Healing can only come from within. Don’t project your feelings onto others. It’s okay to be romantically alone and just surround yourself with friends and family. It might take you a month, or (like me) a few years to feel like yourself. But once you come to the realization that you are your own person and you grow how you grow, you won’t stop smiling.