I had never given it much thought in the past, whether or not I agreed with the notion that 'It's better to have loved and lost than to never have loved at all' but, for this post and situation, I have to say it's true....and here's why...........
Due to mental health reasons, I took a much-needed leave of absence from work, earlier this year. I had been doing my best to hold it together (mentally & emotionally), following the death of my baby brother, in addition to the stress and strains of daily life and work environment. However, being a Mom, grandmom, caretaking granddaughter and 'saint-like' supervisor (according to my coworkers who bear witness to what I endure on the job) took its toll on me and the threads that held me together for so long eventually unraveled. I had, what I believed to have been, a small-scale 'breakdown.' I say, 'breakdown' instead of simply a bad day because, I've had days where I felt upset, moody, sad, mad and plain ole fed-up but I was able to get over/through it by taking a walk, having a talk or going on an extended bathroom break. On that day, it was different.
Baby bro was on my mind (as he is every single day) and I saw a pic of him on FB that brought tears to my eyes (as usual). I felt the emotion welling up in me and before I could stand up, tears began to fall. Ok....that was fine. This happens at least once a week, since my brother passed away. I went into the bathroom, cried my eyes out (to the dismay of a coworker who was in the stall next to me), pulled myself together (or so I thought) and returned to my desk. As soon as I sat down, the tears and emotion came rushing back, up and out and I could not stop it. I let out a low scream? squeal? and I cried and cried and cried and cried. I could barely catch my breath. My supervisor and other employees came rushing to my side and eventually, I did calm down enough to finish my work day. But I knew this time, ish was serious, so I made an appointment to see my doctor ASAP. Knowing my history and family dynamic, my doctor agreed that I needed to take a break from work and family. Although I couldn't find a suitable way to break away from my family, I started my 30 day leave from work a few days after seeing my doctor.
I refer to that period of time as 'The Darkness.' In the beginning, I did little more than lay on the couch, watch TV, eat, browse internet and play a word game on my phone. Less than 2 weeks into my leave, during one of the games I played with a male childhood friend of mine (who I will refer to, from now on, as 'Che'), I received a message from him, out of the blue; a message that sparked a change in my life. Che sent me a message, expressing his interest in me, we began having conversations (through the game's chat feature) and eventually, exchanged phone numbers. He called me immediately and, from there, it was on. We talked on the phone for hours, every day, (without seeing each other) for a few weeks. Then, Che and I began spending a lot of time together; and of course, in the beginning, things were great. We had an instant & very strong romantic connection and both remarked that we felt like teenagers again. Like Mary J. sang, 'chemistry was crazy from the get-go, neither one of us knew whyyy....' . Showering me with compliments and filling my days with laughter and good conversation, Che had shed beautiful light upon my 'darkness' and I felt like I couldn't be happier with anyone else. My family and friends remarked on how happy I seemed and how great I looked. I was often told that I was 'glowing'.....and that's exactly how I felt. Having Che in my life not only brought me happiness but my strength and resolve were replenished. I felt better, I looked better and I wanted to be better.....with him. I really thought I (was finally) found (by) 'The One.' I returned to work, a renewed and refreshed woman....mentally/emotionally and physically (I had also lost about 10lbs. during my 'break.'). I was on Cloud Nine.
But, things between me and Che changed....(seemingly) suddenly and pretty drastically. Without going into detail, I started to see and experience things that were not good (and that I knew I couldn't tolerate for long)). When I saw the first red flag, I ignored it with the justification that there was no way God would bring someone into my life who made me feel so wonderful then take him away from me, justlikethat. But, more red flags popped up....a small one here.....a big one there....a peek of one back there....one laying on its side over there....yet, I continued to play blind. Until an incident occured where I could no longer deny the obvious and had to face the fact that Che was not 'the one' for me. It took another month for me to turn my denial and disappointment into acceptance. I could no longer ignore the fact that Che's time in my life was coming to an end and that I really needed to move on. I also needed to forgive myself for going against my instincts and making choices I shouldn't have made. Even so, I have no regrets nor hard feelings. Today, I am stronger, wiser, better and (still) happy and I'm not so sure I'd be in this space if not for my experience with Che. As the saying goes, some people come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime. I realize what Che's reason was and I'm good with that. Lesson learned. I can still see the sunshine through the rain and I do believe it was better for me to have (been) loved and lost (by) Che than to have never (been)loved (by) him at all.