4. I gave the relationship a funeral. This was one of the more poignant moments of my healing journey. I wrote a goodbye letter to him, sealed it in a bottle, and threw it in the St. Lawrence River. As I watched that bottle go up into the sky, I felt a freedom in my soul that I never experienced before. I was able to let go of the hurt and the pain and, from that day on, I was able to start living again.
5. I took time for myself. I didn’t date for a long time after that relationship ended. I knew I couldn’t enter into another relationship if I didn’t heal the inner wounds from my past. By doing this, I came to know and love myself more than I ever did before in my life. Now, I don’t sell myself short in any relationship I enter into. When we know our worth, we automatically don’t accept anything less than the best for ourselves.
Overall, my experiences have taught me that life is too short to be unhappy. An abusive relationship might seem like hell—and it is—but the true test of a person’s character is how he or she rises from adversity. By clawing my way out of my abyss, my life is more beautiful, more fulfilling and more authentic.
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