Contrary to what the Beatles may have had you believe, when it comes to relationships, love, my dear friends, is simply not enough. Not in the slightest.
Because the truth of the matter is this - one day, probably one seemingly nondescript, very ordinary day (if it hasn't hit you like a shovel already), you will meet someone, who quite by chance, induces such an intense and rich feeling of overwhelming, heart-aching, soul shattering love in you, that you somehow find yourself, perhaps quite uncharacteristically, fighting tooth and nail to be with them, repeatedly, with no apparent regard for anything they do or say and quite in spite of how poorly they treat you.
Eventually though, exhausted by your efforts, you do thankfully find yourself reaching a stage, whereby you realise, you simply have to respect yourself enough to take a step back and create some space. Space for you both to breath. Space for these feelings to expand and grow. Space for the other person to attempt to make a move closer to your side and ultimately, perhaps enough space for them to feel your absence. A hollow feeling which, if they do truly care, should scare them just the right amount into wanting to fight for you too.
Unfortunately, there are of course occasions, where you create that space for someone and it just lays there, dormant and empty, because the other person never actually made the choice to step into it. In the end, they chose not to fight for you and their affection sorrowfully failed to ever grow, or expand. Your absence altogether failing to ever be recognised.
Admittedly, it can be that precise inaction, that can be the most painful part in the whole torrid affair. However, if you're never brave enough to create that space, then you'll never truly know the strength and depth of your partner's affection and as hard as it no doubt will be, if you do indeed find yourself at the end of the road, disappointed, deflated and generally stung by the feeling of being let down, it is genuinely a far worse thing to continue along the cobbles blindly, never actually realising, that you were ultimately always walking it alone.
At the end of last year, I myself reached that point; the part in the process whereby I needed to take a step back and see if I was trying to inflate a ripped balloon. Dismally it appears I was. The worst part, is that despite all the heartache over the past year, I could honestly have forgiven everything and I mean, everything, but what I simply couldn't deal with and what seemed to perpetually niggle me, was that he just couldn't seem to be open or honest about things, nor ever fully commit to me. Which, when I thought about it, seemed to come down to one of two things; either he was a coward, or he simply didn't care enough about me and really, neither of these were good answers.
On the one hand, if he really didn't care, then he was a complete disrespectful cad for ever letting things reach the stage that they had, having known full well from the start how I felt about him and on the other hand, if he was simply just a coward, too afraid to let me in, terrified that I wouldn't love him for the real him, sans all the surface bullshit, then, well, in truth, I couldn't help but pity him really. Although, in all honesty, in either case, I kind of pitied myself more. Because, regardless of anything, these were sadly both things I couldn't change. I simply had to accept them and equally, I had to accept that, unless he was willing to make certain changes, we'd subsequently reached the natural conclusion to our relationship.
Of course, it can't be denied, that every relationship will eventually meet a dead end, so to speak, however, it is often those precise brick walls that serve as the very test of a union. You have the choice to either find a way to break through those barriers, strengthening and growing your relationship in the process, or you give up and walk away, either because you're uninterested, or simply because you just couldn't see, or find a way through.
Personally, I really didn't think this was how it would end. I kind of always saw us as the breakthrough types, I really did, but in all honesty, this just isn't my wall to break down, this is his and I have to be willing to honour us both by accepting that and moving on. At the end of the day, I broke my own heart enough times over the course of 2014 and I naturally don't want to see myself make the same mistakes again in 2015.
Of course, that's not to say that walking away is something I find easy. I won't pretend that my pillow won't be sodden a fair few nights and my face may crumple at a memory or two, but in the long run, it's a far better thing to be on my own, than to choose to be with someone who makes me feel alone. I mean, when you really think about it, if you're the only one fighting, what are you actually fighting for?
I will always love him…but right now, I'm simply choosing to love myself more.