Without closure you're just hanging on. Immobilized.
|J, my pooch, doesn't hang on to the ugly.|
Neither should you.
So, how does one achieve closure?
I'll tell you how I did it, but first let me tell you this: how I move on, achieve closure and let go of past hurts and disappointments is unique to ME. How you might achieve the same in whatever moving on process you are trying to navigate would be the same for you: unique and as individual as you are.
That is the biggest lesson of all. If you walk away from this blog with nothing else but that one truth, my job here is done.
My timeline, rate of recovery, ability to forgive and let go -- essentially, my starting over wonderful, living life phenomenal journey -- is as unique to me as your own life's journey is to you. So, you could read what I have to say and take nothing from it, essentially, because everyone's emotional makeup is as different as their genetic one. When it comes to grieving a loss, or even falling in love, the how, why and when for one person will always be different than the next's. No two people are the same. Likewise, neither are their experiences or their emotional investments in the same. Too soon for one person might be just long enough for another; or even too long (Oh-MY-God-Is-It-Over-Yet!?!!!).
With that, here's what I've learned about achieving closure so that you can move on once you've gotten to that peaceful place.
Closure that is real and complete will only be found within yourself. Do not expect whatever it is that you are trying to move on from to give it to you. Breaking up with someone? Don't expect the ex-lover to somehow bring you the peace you need to get a grip and move on. That's crazy talk! Think about it this way: when someone you love dies, you don't expect that person who's no longer here on this earth to just give you whatever it is you need to be at peace with the loss. You have to grieve, reflect, learn and find closure in your own mind and heart in order to move on when someone you cherish passes away. Well, what makes you think moving on from anything else in this life would be any different? It's not.
Feel whatever it is that you really feel and don't let anyone tell you how you should feel. When I finally left my marriage, I was so over it and ready to just put it behind me. I had spent the entire relationship fighting for it and grieving what wasn't there, all while pretending to be something we weren't for those watching, by the time I got out of the mess, I was just out. I was done. It was over. The pain that I felt after leaving paled in comparison to the pain I endured through it all. I was hurting more for the lost hopes and dreams then the loss of him per se. And, yes, I was scared of what lie ahead in the unknowns of starting over. But other feelings I had were these: joy, excitement, utter and complete relief to have gotten out when I did, happiness for both me and my son and ultimately, gratitude. It wasn't until I really started to let myself feel these feelings in the wake of my separation that I found myself moving on. At first, I allowed well-meaning friends and family telling me how I should feel, and what was okay or not okay, prevent me from expressing how I really felt wholeheartedly and outwardly. Don't do that. Be true to your feelings whatever they may be. If you want to shout from the fucking rooftops how angry you are, how sad you are, or how ridiculously happy you are to have escaped the biggest mistake of your life then DO IT. And don't should all over yourself in the process.
Learn what it really means to forgive, but don't fool yourself in believing that you have to forget. That saying "forgive and forget" is hogwash. Whether you have to forgive yourself for making a mistake or failing to achieve a goal, or you are trying to forgive someone that has hurt you, it is important to take the lessons learned with you as you move forward on your journey. Forget the pain and all the nitty gritty details, yes. But forgive and remember. Also, another lesson you will have to learn here is that forgiveness isn't about excusing yourself or another person for what was done. Instead, it's about growing as a person and learning how to let go, all while remembering that achieving that is what makes you the bigger person. Forgiveness gives YOU the ultimate power and strength and once you realize you have that, you can really move on.