To The Boy Who Left Me Feeling Completely Numb

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sad woman looking forward

By Rachel Marie

It’s been a year. A whole 365 days, and here I am, sitting, in tears because of you.

But this isn’t because you broke my heart. This isn’t because you left me for her. This isn’t because I had to learn how to breathe without you. This is because you made me change; your actions affected every ounce of my being and made me change in all aspects of my life.

I no longer know how to feel anything.

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I was telling someone the other day about how I truly think I am incapable of feeling anything for another person again. And at first, they laughed, and I laughed too, and we joked about how ridiculous I sounded.

But then I thought about it, and I am actually right.

In 365 days, I have never said the words "I love you" and meant it as when I said it to you. In 365 days, I have never felt so safe, so secure and so sure that everything would be okay as I did when you were with me. Because 365 days ago, I had you.

No matter what was going on, no matter what went wrong or right, I never ever doubted anything because in my mind I would always say, “It’s going to be okay, I have him.”

I had absolutely no doubt that you would be around for the rest of my life. I had full confidence that no matter how depressed I got, how sad I was, or how much I didn’t like myself, that you would always love and support me.

But now, there’s none of that support, that joy, that love that you gave me. You’re gone.

The best part about all of this is that I actually don’t know how to maintain any type of relationship now. I have perfected the art of pushing away anyone who tries getting close to me, building the walls up taller than they have ever been, and painting a mask that is thick enough to last for another 365 days.

People who love me get hurt because I no longer prioritize people; I prioritize work. My closest friends no longer know what is going on in my life because I internalize everything and very rarely share with anyone what I’m actually feeling.

I never want to show that I care about a job opportunity or about school clubs in case I somehow fail or get let down — because all of that would require showing some feeling.

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It has not been easy, these past 365 days.

There have been people who I have consistently pushed away, but they haven’t gone anywhere. They have stayed by me and helped patch up the gap you left in my chest.

Now, a note to all the amazing people who are still in my life: although on the outside it looks like I don’t care, or that I am impartial to having you around, I’m not.

I would not have survived the past 365 days without you, I would not have laughed and smiled more in the past 365 than I have in several years without you, and I certainly would not be on the way to being the happiest I have ever been without you.

Although a boy might have broken me, you helped fix me. And I might not be whole just yet, but I am getting there. I might not know how to show someone how much I love them yet, but it doesn’t mean that I don’t feel it.

You know me better than I know myself, so I know that you know I am sorry for all the pushing away that I have done, all the cold shoulders I have given, and all the things I haven’t said.

One day, I’ll get back to who I was. I will learn to open up to someone, to throw myself into something 100 percent, to not be afraid of what could happen if I get hurt again.

But until then, we are here. 365 days of progress, and many more to come.

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Rachel Marie is a regular contributor to Unwritten. She writes primarily about relationships, heartbreak, and lifestyle topics.

This article was originally published at Unwritten. Reprinted with permission from the author.