Sunday nights can be tough after a breakup, but a few small changes can make a big difference.
I used to hate Sunday nights. There’s just something in the quiet… if you listen closely enough, you can almost hear the sound of happy couples and families sitting down to dinner, laughing and enjoying one another’s company. Everything closes early. Time stands still in those hours around sunset, doesn’t it?
Sundays actually weren’t so bad until I broke up with someone I’d lived with for five years. When I moved out of the house we shared and into my own apartment, even though I’d lived on my own before, it was incredibly intimidating. When you’ve been with someone for so long, their absence can seem like the loudest thing you’ve ever heard. That’s why I probably let a solid month – maybe two – go by before I could fall asleep without the television on. And for whatever reason, Sunday nights were the worst.
But one day, I got sick of walking around feeling all strung-out and sad. Although getting over that relationship was a long and arduous process, and although I had setbacks and low points and days when I felt like giving up on practically everything and crawling under the carpet, I hit a point where I just got mad. I got mad at all the time I was spending thinking about him. I got mad at the fact that I’d somehow stripped myself of the ability to appreciate the little things in life. I got mad that I couldn’t just enjoy a quiet Sunday evening like a normal human being.
Little by little, I stopped feeling sorry for myself and started moving forward. For starters, I indulged in decorating my space with colors, textures and objects that made me smile. Living with him had meant a ton of compromises; we loved entirely different color palettes and types of furniture, and I’d given in more often than I’d stood my ground – the house had always been more his than mine. Making every inch of my apartment entirely my own not only made me feel more comfortable in my new home, but it also represented something.
I finally started realizing how much time I’d wasted hanging on to something broken when I could have been out there living my life. So I stopped looking at living alone as a setback or a second choice and started seeing it for exactly what it was: a luxury.
Over time, I made a point of relishing more and more “little things” on my own without seeking out anyone’s permission or approval. I’d always had this yen to spend a Saturday morning wandering around a farmer’s market, but that was never his thing. So one Saturday morning, I woke up early, drove downtown and spent the entire morning strolling around the local growers’ market I’d been meaning to go to for half a decade. Later that spring, I adopted a pup from a local shelter – something I’d been wanting to do for years – and boom! Sunday nights weren’t so terrible anymore, because what’s there to be sad about at the dog park?
If there’s a certain time of the week that makes you feel small – Sunday evenings, Saturday mornings, Friday nights, whatever – make a plan. Seek out something fun to do and make a date with yourself to do it. If there are moments in your life that are just too quiet, literally fill them with a playlist of songs that make you smile and have no connection to your past whatsoever. If you’re stuck in neutral, find something that blows some wind through your hair, even just a little. Sign up for a class. Start a workout routine. Call for backup. But don’t you dare just sit there feeling sorry for yourself. Life is far too short. So forget about “what could have been” and take charge of what can be.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Amy Lynch is the community director for Pink Kisses ~ an online community founded by former television reporter Ellie Scarborough to help women forget their exes and find their inner bombshells.