A Letter to the Person Who Can't Let Go

Dear friend,

I’m sorry it’s been a hard day. I know my words don’t mean much- they can’t change how you feel. But still, I’m sorry. I am familiar with the ache that sits in your chest for that person, that place, that moment in time. I know it is a beautiful emotion that eats away at you.

If you’re like me, there are some days it is easier than others. If people are around or I have a set task to do, I forget more easily. I am able to live presently instead of in the past, or in a promise that will never be fulfilled in the way I had once hoped. Sometimes though, even those moments aren’t enough to diminish the weight of it all. Some days it can be nearly too hard to bear.

I’m sorry. I’m sorry it hurts. I’m sorry it is not easier to let go.

Lots of people give us advice on how to ‘get over’ it; whatever ‘it’ is. After a while even we’re not sure what we’re meant to move on from. So please don’t think this is advice, or a stern ‘how to’ guide you find in the self-help section at Barnes and Noble. It couldn’t possibly be, because I don’t have any advice to give you. I just know it hurts. A lot. And I write this in the hope that one day both you and I can move on from what now holds us back.

I find it is the uncertainty of what could be that hinders me the most. There is a fine line between hope and delusion that I am continually navigating. As a human being I cannot function without hope. It is my oxygen, my energy and my drive to keep going each day. But no one ever taught us what delusion was. So many people have confused it with hope, and hope with delusion. Does anyone know what either of these things is anymore? And if so, how do I know when I am hopeful and when I need to let go?

In the middle of this lingering moment that has yet to pass, I feel I know only one thing for certain: Hope is ever present. Hope is always available. Hope is real. And this means I must let go of what is not.

Perhaps you long for a place you left; a place of safety and security. A place that made you feel alive. Or maybe it was a person, or a group of people who you loved. But just as the seasons change and fall turns to winter, so do these moments change. And while they will always carry the sweet scent of blossoms and make you feel light headed and tingly like the first time you fell in love, it is futile to live in the fall when it is in fact winter. Because if we do this, we will never enter spring even though it is just around the corner.

Maybe you live in the constant recollection of what you said, or what you didn’t say. The regret of a moment, the heartbreak of what could have been or the remorse of what was. I know it doesn’t feel okay right now. I know if feels like everything is out of place, but I want you to know this:

It is okay. And it will be okay. I must believe this for myself too, because I have hope for tomorrow. I have hope that this will all make sense someday soon.

It might not count for much, but if you need to hear this, I hope I might be able to speak these words to you:
It’s time to let go.
You are going to be okay.
The safety of these emotions is keeping you from a place more beautiful than you could hope for or imagine.
Most of all, please believe this; you deserve to be happy. And you will not be happy while you live in these ghost moments.

I don’t know how to move past these moments, I cannot tell you how. I am learning how to do this with you. So would you join me as I find my way out of this forest? I can feel the sunshine glimmering through the trees and can smell the fragrance of the flowers ahead, but I cannot yet see them. So please join me on this journey, for it is far less lonely to have a friend along the way. We will find our way together. We always do.

I must believe that tomorrow this weight will shift a little. This feeling of wanderlust for a now nonexistent place will slowly pass, and with this process we will soon be ready to let go. We will let go. And we will be okay.

It gets better. Here’s to being braver than we ever thought possible. Here’s to letting go of what was, so we can take hold of what is.