On February 4th 2012 I broke up with my high school sweetheart. That same day, I told myself I would never become so attached to someone else ever again. I didn’t want to ever have to go through such heartbreak again. It was more than ending a relationship; I had to face the reality that my first love and everything I had built up around it was no longer there. Everything I had thought to be true was broken. I lost my best friend and the person who had helped me through some of the hardest times in my life. Despite comfort and support from my friends and family, I lost a part of myself that day; a part of me that I’ve been trying to get back ever since.
In the time since the break up I have met new people, developed and lost feelings, even been in another relationship. Still, the same thought has never left the back of my mind: don’t become attached. This thought cripples my emotions; it causes me to always follow my head and never my heart. I recognize how incapacitating it is to view relationships the way that I do, and yet I can’t find the strength to overcome it. To me, that is the worst part about insecurities. Even if you can recognize their irrationality, it doesn’t make them go away.
My mentality about relationships has crept its way into every aspect of my life. Building walls around your heart, I have learned, is a double-edged sword. As determined as I am to remain shut off from feeling anything, part of me hopes that someone will see past my cold exterior. One person; I just want one person to realize that I’m worth the effort it will take to break down my walls. The tape playing over again and over again in my head has slowly changed from “don’t get attached,” to “you’re not good enough”. I push people away, and then spend weeks wondering why I wasn’t good enough for them to stick around.
My aversion to attachment comes in waves. I can go days without actively thinking of it, but then I notice myself hoping to run into someone, or looking forward to a text, and my insecurity pulls me back in. It is inescapable, because it is a part of who I am. It is not, however, who I am. I am not my relationships. I know that one day, I will find the piece of me that I lost that day in 2012. And when that day finally comes, I will be freed from the chains of my insecurity.