Thank You to my Ex

I have always believed that everyone we meet is for a reason. It is never an accident, there is always a purpose. Even if we get hurt, we learn something so much bigger than the pain we endured. I thought I had experienced being in love before. I had cared for past boyfriends deeply. In a way, I did love them. I just didn't realise there was a difference between loving someone and being in love with someone. Now I can honestly say that I have been in love once. It was the most beautiful yet terrifying experience I have had. The guy I fell in love with, was also the guy that truly broke my heart. Despite all the pain that was caused in the end, I hold no regrets. My ex showed me exactly how big my heart is and just how much love I am capable of. 

I have always been quite guarded. I had my walls up high and it took a fair bit of effort on another person's part to even get close to me. I'd like to think I'm not quite like that now but to an extent I am still quite guarded. Only with my heart. When it comes to friendships and meeting new people, I am a pretty open, loving and outgoing character. When it comes to my heart and opening up my soul to another, I suppose I am pretty cautious as not everyone deserves it. I have many acquaintances and very few people I consider my true friends. 

For the blog's sake, let's call my ex Dave. Now it wasn't a "love at first sight" kind of deal. It was actually quite a slow burn. I had known him for years. I had worked with him, lived with him and also became best friends with him before we even started anything intimate. Through all those years, there was never an inkling of attraction on my part towards him. What I did have for him was respect. 

Dave was extremely charismatic. He had that magnetism about him that drew people towards him. He oozed confidence, gave great advice, was a master at communicating with people, was always so generous and would take the shirt off his back to help someone else. He also had a killer sense of humour.

My weakness. If a guy can make me laugh, like actually "laugh out loud", I'm pretty much caught. This may sound easy as I am known to laugh a lot. You know those "lols" or "giggles" where you find something kind of funny so you nervously or confidently, fake a laugh to give it some credit? Yea, that's me. I do that a lot. If you see me in person, my face is a dead giveaway. I have been told my facial expressions are priceless. It seems to tell all. Now to get me to actually laugh out loud where my stomach hurts, my eyes are tearing up and I am chuckling uncontrollably, this takes talent. Dave had this talent.

Dave and I spent a lot of time together. When we weren't together, he would randomly call me just to say hi and we would chat for hours. He would send a random text through the day, just to make me smile. Our friendship grew and we both started to open up to each other. I told him things about me no one else knew, he did the same. We would send random snap chats, see how each other's day was going and hang out and enjoy each others company for hours on end. There was tears, a copious amount of laughter and many moments of just being silly dorks together.

He made me feel safe, when I needed a shoulder, he was there. When I had a tough day, he would do little things to put a smile on my face. Needless to say, the chemistry between us started to build. I think this went for months as I was fighting it and didn't want to ruin a good thing. We eventually started hooking up. This stage also went for another good few months. I will still say, as much as the chemistry was insane, there was always that voice in my head telling me to be careful about this one. I didn't end up listening to it, we became exclusive. It was official and now everyone knew. There was no going back.

I felt so safe and secure with Dave. I figured because he had known me and seen all the sides of my personality, there was no need to prove my loyalty or trustworthiness to him. After all, he saw what I was like in the work place, he saw how I was with the boys. He knew I wasn't the kind of girl that had a reputation for sleeping around and I thought it was amazing that someone finally got me and didn't need to question me. I was wrong but that is another story.

Once Dave and I became official, I let my guard down. I trusted him with all my heart. I never thought not even for a moment that he would have the ability to hurt me because I knew how much he cared for me, especially our friendship. I was scared at first to allow myself to give my heart and be vulnerable. I fought an internal battle. I have always and probably will always be an all or nothing kind of girl. My heart won and I fell hard. The chemistry was off the wall, we couldn't keep our hands off each other. We were always laughing and just enjoying the simple life and each other's company.

It was like the universe was smiling on us. Every where we went, every traffic light would just go green, things just flowed. I can't even really explain what it was like to fall in love with Dave. It was nothing even close to what I had ever experienced. There really only was one word to describe it and that word was magic. I realised that I had not in fact been in love before. Not even close. This was a whole other level. 

I had always been so independent. I made my own way, I had my own back, I worked for everything I had. I relied and depended on no one but myself. I always took care of myself and because of this, I always put myself first. Until Dave. I found myself to become selfless. If it made him happy, it made me happy. Just seeing him smile made my day. For the first time in my life, someone else's needs came before mine. 

The relationship ended badly. Safe to say it was the worst break up I have ever been through. I can just say that it was insecurities that caused it to fall apart. Insecurities that didn't need to be there. He wasn't the one for me. I miss our friendship more than anything but some doors are better left shut.

I can't say that being with him was a waste of time because it took someone like him, someone that knew me for years to teach me some very valuable life lessons. Dave taught me what it was like to actually be in love. He taught me what I was capable of when I gave my love. He helped shape me so when I do meet the right guy, I know exactly how to love the man for me. My ex also taught me exactly what to look out for and what I don't want. 

The next time I give my heart away, this guy will have had come to terms with his issues and insecurities. He will be aware of them and therefore not allow them to control him or take them out on me. There is not a soul on this planet that doesn't have insecurities, it is just not possible. No one is perfect. I sure am not either.

I don't know when I will fall in love again but what I do know is that the right guy for me will love me for exactly who I am and I will love him for exactly who he is. We will not want to change each other, we will only be by each other's side to help encourage and motivate each other to grow into the best version of ourselves. If some one is trying to change who you are and wants you to do things that isn't really you, how can that person really love you for who you are?

These are the lessons my ex taught me and even though the break up was extremely painful and a lot of hurt came from it. I cannot thank him enough. I will be forever grateful to have had met him. Without him, I wouldn't know exactly what I do and do not want. I hope he has also learnt some valuable lessons from our relationship. 

The universe has a funny way of sending certain people into our lives to make us, break us or shake us up a little. Even if we meet for a day, a season or a lifetime, it is always most definitely for a reason. Sometimes this reason is camouflaged as a painful event, if you look back, it was trying to teach you something.

How we deal with pain is up to us. As the old saying goes, when something bad happens to you, you have three choices. You can either let it define you, let it destroy you or let it strengthen you. I choose the latter and for that I thank my ex for he has made me stronger than I have ever been.