I recently went through a breakup with my boyfriend of three and a half years. We were high school sweethearts, and we'd done the first two years of college together. So, to sum it up, we don't really know life without each other. This breakup was particularly difficult because nobody did anything wrong, and we still were (and are) very much in love with each other. We decided we needed to go our separate ways, at least for a little while, to grant each other the space to grow in areas we identified needed to change. While the breakup was positive, that doesn't mean it wasn't devastating. I read once that having to let go of someone you still love is like having them die, but they're not really gone, and the pain could go on forever. I don't have all of the answers on how to handle a breakup, especially of this kind. Actually, I kind of feel that I have none of the answers because this happened to me so recently. But, I've learned a few small things and I'm trying to keep reminding myself of those things, so this helps me too.
You will miss that person more than anything. You will miss them so much and wonder to yourself why in the world you thought it was a good idea to remove them from your life. It will feel as though you have made a mistake. Even right now, I feel like I could have made a mistake. But, you have to remind yourself of why this happened and why it was necessary. For me, I needed to take some time to see what exactly it is that I want for my future, and I needed to do that on my own. If I back out of the choice that I made for myself right now then I would be cheating myself. Even if one day down the line I end up back with this guy, I owe it to him to take the time for myself now to make sure that I know what I want.
Time heals all wounds. I was watching Grey's Anatomy because it's my comfort show, and the episode ended with this quote from Meredith: "Time waits for no man. Time heals all wounds. All any of us can want, is more time. Time to stand up. Time to grow up. Time to let go." That quote really resonated with me, because when she says time to stand up, time to grow up, time to let go she is both indicating that that needs to happen now, that the time has come, but she also is indicating that it takes time to do those things. It reminded me that while those things feel like they're happening right now, it takes time for them to actually happen. I have to have grace with myself and know that pain does not just go away the moment you decide you're done feeling it. It takes time to feel even remotely okay, and that is normal.
If you're going through a breakup, or have ever gone through one, you might know and understand all of the things I'm feeling right now. I just hope that by being open about those feelings it can help someone else!