To my dearest past, those I’ve quit,
I feel I owe you an explanation.
You see, I have carried you with me, close to my heart and into every corner of the world. Even with the extra weight of your memories pulling on my heart and soul (some good, some bad), I could not bear to let you go. I feared letting go would mean complete and total loss, that I might forget what was. I feared that removing you from my life in the present would delete some hard drive wired somewhere in my being that had been stock piling and backing up all of those bright, golden moments–the mental snapshots when life between us was more than beautiful, when the days that we shared were magnificent. It didn’t seem important that those same back ups also remembered how things died between us, recording and playing on repeat all the tears, the lies, and broken promises. That pain was worth enduring to keep the good moments–wasn’t it?
At the end of this past year, I began to wonder and question that logic. I asked myself: Was it really worth it? What if keeping these chapters open is really like purposely preventing an open, oozing wound from fully healing?
In a way, my dear past, it seemed like such a silly question with an easy answer once I finally had the courage to ask it. My affection for you and deep desire to preserve the good parts blinded me. Holding on had left me crippled, incapable of fully becoming whole again. On the outside, I seemed okay. I moved through the motions of the work day with a smile. I went out with friends, and I traveled. No one would have guessed that the weight had become so heavy simply pulling myself out of bed each morning had become something of an Olympic sport–one I wasn’t medaling in.
I had arrived at a point in my life journey where I could no longer carry the extra weight of you and move forward. I had two options:
- I could decide to stay and die here, knowing with certainty that I could keep the good memories for the rest of my life (as well as deal with the bad).
- OR I could decide to move towards my future and cut the last thread that held us together, risking the loss of everything I had saved.
In the end, I decided I was no longer going to feel terrible by continuing to allow you to be in my life. I wasn’t going to stop my journey. I didn’t want this year, 2015, to be filled with the pain of excess baggage. I was done, so I said goodbye. Do you know what I discovered once I did?
Now please, don’t take this the wrong way. You need to understand I haven’t quit you out of hatred or anger. I’ve quit you because it was necessary. You need to understand that letting you go has been the best and hardest thing I’ve ever done for us. You see, dear past, I didn’t lose the good. I didn’t forget it all, and I never will. Yet, by cutting our ties, I’ve found that I’m no longer attached to the bad, to the pain. I can finally feel that wound beginning to heal, and I know that once it has, I’ll be able to look back on those good memories of you stored safely away in my heart with nothing but a smile.
So, I leave you now as a hopeful wanderer in this big, beautiful world, wishing you nothing but good things on your own journey. Make 2015 the most exciting yet.
All the best,