He had love for me and I had love for him–even to the end and perhaps past that–but he was no longer in-love with me and somewhere along the way, without realizing it, I had fallen out of love with him as well. The presence of any love at all was good enough for me but that wouldn’t have made it a healthy situation.
We don’t always love the things that are good for us (broccoli, spinach, brussels sprouts, exercise, hard work, clean living). And more often than not we love the things that aren’t good for us (pizza, ice cream, cigarettes, caffeine, TV, late nights on the town, the more than occasional bottle of Jack D.–if you drink that sort of drink). But love is supposed to be a good thing. Right?
I am not a big picture person. I am truly one that cannot see the forest because I am distracted by each individual tree. In my relationship with him, I chose to only see the pretty trees, the instances that proved there was love. I chose to ignore or avoid the dead or diseased trees that made the entire forest unhealthy. I didn’t see it. But he did. He could see that even though there were beautiful places in our forest, it was unsafe for us both to be there.
He made the decision to end it. He made a decision that I would never have been strong enough to make. And looking back I can see that he was making a really difficult decision. I can see, in my mind’s eye, that it hurt him to hurt me. But he was right. We are both better people today because he made that decision. We are both happier in our separate situations than we ever could have been together.
I was angry and bitter for a long time because of his decision. I think it was because I no longer trusted love. I no longer believed that there was any love there at all. How could he say he loved me but then hurt me the way he did? But now my faith in love itself is restored because I see that there was love there. And it was because of that love that he said goodbye. He loved me enough to make the right decision for both of us. And he proved his love when he showed how much it hurt him to hurt me because if there was no love there, it wouldn’t have hurt at all.