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On self-worth, break ups and dating: As we drove up the mountain to Cottonwood Pass, my mind became flushed with nostalgic memories of the PCT. It was 2019 and my boyfriend at the time flew out to do the Sierra section with me.
We were in an unhealthy relationship and I felt so scared to even entertain the idea that maybe it didn’t have to be so hard. An obscure remembrance of the girl I once was: unsure, insecure, weak in my boundaries, self-conscious.
After the PCT, we broke up in a quite traumatic way. It happened to be the most painful heartbreak I apparently went through. It felt as if my heart was physically tearing. Months of tears, an inability to get myself out of bed and the perception of finding myself taking pharmaceuticals… I hit what I felt was rock bottom. Still, I felt a sense of hope… almost non-existent, but there.
It was quite beautiful what followed. I found myself reading an article on Christian Mingle that spoke of putting my faith into God, not people… for people will always disappoint, but God will always stay True. It reinvoked something in me so strongly that I finally hopped out of bed, focused on my ACIM lessons, found a job that got me out of my head… and it felt as if I was taking my first step… it felt as if I was being re-born into a new self.
The best part was that my ex joined me in the shift of awakening. We started attending church and praying for a change in perception. I didn’t want a romantic relationship with him anymore, it was simply wholesome to see how despite the hurt, we came together with God as our guiding force. There were ebbs and flows of anger and lots of projection that came up to the surface, but we kept our eyes centered on our vision to heal.
A huge blessing, for if it weren’t for my ex, I would have never learned how to set boundaries for myself or bring attention to the types of guys I was considering a relationship for. There’s so much I can’t tolerate anymore, whereas just last year I was putting up with all sorts of red flags. I had convinced myself that unconditional love meant staying with the person no matter what. I wanted to be loved so badly that I stayed in relationships that were heavy on my heart just so I could say I had a warm body beside me every night.
Now, I recognize that a form of self-love is saying no to things that don’t resonate with me. I’ve come to the point where I would prefer to be single versus settling for someone I know doesn’t fit my apparent standards. I’m simply not open to compromising my Spirit anymore.
I am eternally grateful for Hope Johnson as she helped me the most through the journey of dating. A few years ago she said to me, “Don’t be afraid to go out on dates with a bunch of guys and learn about what you like and don’t like. Don’t be afraid to walk away if something doesn’t resonate with you, either. Just be natural and have fun with all your expressions!” I remember thinking, I can allow myself THAT amount of freedom?? She engrained into my mind that it was ALL about having fun even if I got the perception that I was getting rejected, that I was a whore or that I would end up single for the rest of my life.
She suggested I allow people to be as they are… to let them reveal how they would like to relate with me. The past couple years, I can honestly say I LOVE going out on dates with multiple guys just because I have learned so much about what I’m into, how to communicate, how to express my apparent boundaries and how to simply enjoy the experience of the date. Most of all, I have learned how to walk away from experiences I didn’t feel were serving my highest interests, which is something I used to lack courage in.
I have also witnessed how fast things come up to the surface when I give people the space to show me what they’re into instead of telling them the things I don’t like. Often times, the things that are “deal breakers” are revealed to me almost immediately and I don’t feel as if I am wasting my time or theirs. I just find myself saying, “No, thank you,” and moving on or witnessing a change.
Over this experience, I have developed a much higher confidence and trust that what I dream for in a romantic relationship exists because I am the dream-maker. I have met hundreds of dreamy people during my travels that I once convinced myself couldn’t possibly exist until I opened myself up to the idea that maybe… just maybe, they could. And now, people whom are much more in alignment with my apparent desires come into my life effortlessly. A reminder to myself that anything I imagine, exists.✨🧚🏼‍♀️