Horseshoe Magazine

The Long-Form Journalism Source of the University of New Haven

Horseshoe Magazine

Horseshoe Magazine

Smile, baby, you’re alive, you’ve got options


I’m sorry.

I’m sorry you were hurt, I’m sorry things didn’t go as planned, and I’m sorry you feel like you squandered all that time… but you didn’t. And even if I could take your pain away, I wouldn’t.

You won’t believe me right now, and it’s not because I’m cruel or because you deserve it, but it will make you better.

It will make you a better person, stronger, and, if you allow it, it will have a positive effect on every relationship you have from now on. Stop looking at this as an ending; it’s just a lesson, and while you may not see it right now, I assure you that it’s a good thing. This break-up is a gift

Your relationship did not work out for whatever reason. Whether it’s been a few weeks or a few years, you’ll have come a long way in learning something you didn’t know before. There will have been highs, which have been removed from your story because you’ve broken up, but you still own those good times, those happy memories. There will have been lows, and instead of seeing them through the rose-colored glasses of someone who wanted to make it work, you can see them for what they truly were. 

Beautiful mistakes that led you here. 

Take advantage of this opportunity to decide what you will and will not tolerate. Maybe they put you second ––or third, or fourth or fifth –– on their priority list, maybe they convinced you that you were somehow less than them, maybe they were quick to anger, or chose to stray, leaving you feeling like you weren’t enough; none of these things are your fault. None of these things happen because you deserve them. These things occur as a result of a lack of resources. We are all damaged goods in some way; no one is perfect, we all have our demons. The important thing is that we address them rather than harm others. It is not your fault if they have been unable to do so. All you have to do is decide what you’re willing to tolerate and what you deserve.

Would you treat someone the same way?

Imagine you were your own child and you were watching the relationship through a window. Would you be proud?

If you answered “no” to any of the previous questions, you should consider why you would let someone do it to you. Not all abuse is physical; sometimes it’s as simple as constantly belittling someone, snooping around their phone, cheating, lying and making someone you pretend to care about feel anything less than wonderful.

People frequently believe that because they have invested time in a relationship, it has been elevated to the level of having value and substance. They aren’t happy, but they would rather be with someone than with no one. With my hand over my heart, I can tell you that you are better off alone than with the wrong person. I sincerely hope that if you are one of these people, you will be able to read this column sooner rather than later. To the person who is reading this. You are amazing. And you will never have to settle for less than you deserve again.

I’m not saying wait for the perfect match, because there is no such thing. There is no such thing as perfection and anyone who tells you otherwise is either lying to you or themselves. But I know for a fact that you deserve someone who makes you feel good. Someone who makes you more than you are. Someone who can find a way to make you smile when you really don’t want to. Someone who makes you feel strong, secure and loved. And they deserve the same from you. 

Life isn’t a fairytale. An outpouring of emotion is satisfying, we all need it now and again. Let yourself dive deep into it, feel every ounce of misery and wail at the top of your lungs. Then let it go because it’s nonsense. Had these things been meant to happen, they would have happened. Don’t waste time mourning something that was only ever a fantasy. All of the good things that happened while you were together are still yours, but now you get to move on armored with the knowledge that you won’t make the same mistakes again.

You get to become a Yes Woman, determined to take every opportunity life sends your way. You get to value yourself and your time. You get to know that you won’t put up with drama ever again. You learn to spot warning signs easily. Because you still have time. Often we learn more from our losses than we do from our wins.

Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end

Because of you, someone has a favorite mug to drink their tea out of that you bought them,

Someone hears a song on the radio  and it reminds them of you

Someone has a book you recommended to them and gotten lost in the pages

Someone remembered a joke you told them and smiled to themselves on the bus

Never think you don’t have an impact. Your fingerprints can’t be wiped away from the little marks of kindness that you’ve left behind.

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