Heartache and heartbreak. We try to avoid it but it comes after us. It makes for the best writing and the best songs, the best art, it’s what makes us human. Without it we wouldn’t know vulnerability, we wouldn’t love well.
We don’t love people well when we have closed hearts. Open hearts feel with others. Open hearts allow the risk of being hurt to be present. Closed hearts says “I don’t want to listen to your story because I don’t want to feel what you feel”.
It’s easy to be logical and tell someone to leave their abusive or unloving husband or boyfriend, but to go through it yourself, or to follow your gut and not your heart which often times is tied to brokenness in your soul, that’s another story.
As I’m talking to my friend about heartache I remember this one time years ago where my ex roommate tucked me into my bed. He was my first guy roommate.
I thought it was fine because I had a boyfriend. I was safe because I was taken, I wouldn’t have some type of love affair with a guy I lived with in the same house.
Because I was so broken and didn’t know what love was supposed to be like, I was attracted to men who were emotionally absent. And even physically absent, like my father.
My ex would disappear for days, sometimes not answering my texts or calls. I’ve never been obsessive, I’d send one text and wait patiently for a reply. I’d give up. I’d think “he must be busy”. But my mind would run wild. Where is he? What is he doing? I made excuses for his behavior. I thought it was normal because the fact that anyone was around was enough for me.
3 days would pass.
And the one who was present? My guy roommate. He had his own room FYI. I cried and told him my boyfriend had been ghosting me. I didn’t understand why there was a wall I couldn’t break down. Even when he was present, I couldn’t read his thoughts and he didn’t share his emotions with me. He was just a very practical guy. He could fix cars and lights. He could pay for dinner.
He understood instructions, and completed tasks, but when it came to his heart, he was completely illiterate.
My roommate played with bunnies on the grass. I thought he was a bit feminine. He wrote poetry and we would read our writing to each other.
I realized that I often went for guys who were emotionally unavailable because it was safer. I know it’s sound strange. Because emotional openness means telling your truth, and risking having to feel what you don’t want to feel.
It’s easier to shut your heart down completely than to speak your truth and feel those emotions.
My ex would tell me he needed space. “Why can’t you just tell me you need space?” I would say.
My roommate tucked me into my bed as I cried over my boyfriend at the time. Why am I with a ghost when there is flesh and blood here? He told me to breathe as he said breathing brings you back to yourself.
I didn’t understand it. I’d be attracted to a non-present man, while next to me was someone available, someone emotionally open, someone loving.
And my broken soul had to go for the broken man.
Someone I couldn’t attain, someone whose heart was locked with a dead bolt, tripled locked. No amount of prying, questioning, asking, praying seemed to do the job.
The only thing that pried my ex open was me mentioning breaking up.
It was the first time I saw him cry in the 2.5 years we were together. He begged and cried. What can I do to change, he asked. I said I needed to be with someone who believes in Jesus and I want to marry one day.
He said he would go to church with me. Let’s get married now!!
I said, no.
Because those weren’t the factors that prevented us from moving forward- I knew for ages that he wasn’t it, he wasn’t exactly what I wanted as a life partner.
So my heart didn’t want to break up, but my spirit knew – he’s not it. He’s not your life partner.
It’s easy to avoid talking about your emotions, it’s easy to shut down your heart.
What’s difficult is saying how you feel. And finding closure and agreement.
If you’re going through heartache I pray God would give you comfort in this hour. I pray you would know that God is with you.
He loves you dearly.
Give and partner with me- thank you!
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