Relationships After Heartache

Summer is a funny season for me. Being raised in Naples, Florida meant that life was an endless amount of warm days, beach visits, and afternoon thunderstorms. To tell you the truth, I kinda, really, sorta, hated it. The only benefit of never-ending 70-80 degree weather was warmer Halloweens––I loved autumn, but I would have probably hated having to wear a jacket over my costume because it was freezing/snowing for trick-or-treating. I guess I was lucky that I could show off my costumes, but we still had to deal with hurricanes; there is the trade-off. Ever cry because you heard they were canceling Halloween because there were ample amounts of standing water and debris from the Hurricane that blew in the week before? No? Just me? (they didn’t cancel it, which means my mom and I grabbed a costume from Party City last minute, I was a ghost, and it was a laughable outfit, to say the least).

Now that I am older and get to decide my home, and by decide, I mean a place where there is a leaf-peeping opportunity close enough to drive to. But now, I find myself feeling more and more uncomfortable when the weather is ever over 70 degrees. Like it is right now in New York. However, I am so thankful August is around the corner.

Now, you may be wondering, “what does this have to do with being in a relationship after a heartache?” Well, one reason I now feel uncomfortable in summer is because of precisely that. For me, my heartbreaks happened in the summer. Now I didn’t pick this, but maybe that correlation/causation theory in psychology wasn’t wrong. Perhaps a spike in ice cream sales does cause murders, just as the stereotypical “uncuffing season” is summer. It makes sense to those people who think this is the time when you are meant to find a fling on your extended stay in the Hampton’s and leave the person you met in the winter behind.

After my previous relationship ended out of the blue in June, I have had a little PTSD surrounding the anxiety and depression I developed in 2017 deemed “the summer of heartache,” and I can see how it influences my now, current relationship. When I touch the month of June, I start over-analyzing my partner’s actions. I tell myself I am trying to be a bit more cautious this time around, you know “pay attention to what the relationship is needing” instead of focusing on what “I needed” as my ex so graciously taught me he valued more when it came to our relationship.

With all this being said, I can see how summer distances some couples. The first thing that pops into my head for a relationship is cuddling. In winter, when the windows are like the walls of an igloo and the heater is clanging, then well cuddle on! Intertwine those legs and wrap your arms around each other like a gift-wrapped beneath a tree. In summer? Forget that closeness. Sometimes even feeling the warmth of my partner’s thigh delicately rubbing against mine on the Subway is enough for my leg to start to sweat and my body temperature to feel like even more of a furnace.

I think, for myself at least, intimacy is so essential for me to feel comfortable in a relationship. It’s a subtle reminder that you are mine and I am yours (unless you cheat, and then well you suck, I’m sorry I am not sorry for saying that). And when I am trying to feel okay after heartache, and its the summer, and I am having flashbacks, the “not being intimate” and “sitting on opposite sides of the couch so you can feel the a/c at the precise position” are scenarios that make me feel insecure.

Luckily this is the second summer with my partner, and time definitely heals those insecurities, but Summer 2018 was definitely my crash course on relationships after heartache. See we had met in winter, lol, which meant we had four months before the hot, humid, and stinky garbage days sept into the streets when we walked around hand in hand. When it hit over 70 degrees, I felt my fear bubbling up like the heat index. We had distanced to the point my partner was unsure of our relationship. When he communicated that to me, at first, all I could think was, “here we go again, Depression.”

But something I learned about Summer 2017, the rollercoaster of a season, was I needed to love myself through the heartbreak. It was h.a.r.d. to limit my emotions to four simple letters. I was a mess: my eating, irregular, my resting heart rate, frantic, and mindset, troubled. I closed off from most but a select few friends. Then I moved. Then I started working towards myself and I was making new friends, I felt like everything was coming around. Then he got into a new relationship within two months of us ending (hello August downfall), and I was destructive. I was mad at him, so why was I taking it out on myself? 

It took time, over seven months for me to feel good dating again. It took six months of me sulking to say no to it all. I took the month of December, once all my finals were handed in, to pay attention to “me”. It was my best decision. I went on long walks while the snow fell and small flakes collected on my hair and hat. I would remember going to Trader Joes at night, explicitly walking through the tunnel of Christmas trees on 11th and 2nd Avenue and finding yummy, healthy food to cook for dinner. I was going to the Strand Bookstore and spending hours in the clearance book section outside, wearing gloves as my fingertips scanned the spines and gathered more novels to add to my ever-growing “read next” pile.

I listened to music that made me happy, wore face masks that rejuvenated my skin, and sat for hours on the couch watching Harry Potter. I was giving back to myself what I had taken away. I was doing everything I could to bounce back from the heartache. It wasn’t till 2018 when I met my current partner. For our first four months, we were the honeymoon stage and then some, but in the beginning, I was slightly hesitant about entering another relationship because the last thing I wanted was another six+ months of me sulking and binge drinking in New York.

Was he going to hurt me, like the other men did? He didn’t, hasn’t. When we got to the summer and got a bit more distanced, we were able to communicate. I heard his doubts about us and was able to sit and talk it out with him. Our future, our feelings, and our frustrations came out. I had never been able to do that with my past relationship; heartbreak taught me that. 

I think it takes time. If you were in love with someone else, and that love has stopped existing, then I think it’s worth you taking the time to reposition the love you were giving to them and give it back to yourself.  I think you know when it’s an excellent time to enter another relationship. **Mind you my ex’s rebound that caused my August Downfall only lasted a few months, so if you are into breaking up with people often, then maybe skip over the refractory period like he did, but if you are like me and care about people’s feelings, care about yourself first. 

After heartache, care about yourself because you deserve it, dating and caring about others after that will follow in due time.

Weekend in Bavaria

I boarded a plane from Newark to Munich to attend a Summer wedding in Bavaria. It was my first time in Germany, and a few days wasn’t nearly enough time to see it all. Most of my time was spent at the Eibsee Hotel where we slept at the foot of the tallest mountain in Germany. We spent hours on the lake on row boats, paddle boats, and motor boat. The cool lake water brought relief to my sunburned legs after forgetting sunscreen at home. The views from the top of Zugspitze reopened my excitement for exploration—this city girl missed the mountains. Bis zum nächsten Mal Deutschland!

First Year: Done

Finally, it is summer. The completion of my finals may be enough of a sign, but the humidity in the stale New York air makes it feel real. I successfully completed a full year of graduate school at New York University. My first semester, school-wise, went fantastically. I received great marks on my papers and presentations. The new world of grad school was being conquered and I was the victor. The adaption to New York and all of the curveballs with mental health made the Fall, altogether, kinda ehhhh.

Fast forward to the rebooting I did during winter break and feeling better in my new habitat: my second semester, happiness-wise, went fantastically. I was involved in a beautiful relationship, had an incredible support system of friends, and felt overall overjoyed. The curveballs some of my more difficult classes gave me, made the Spring, a bit more than what I am used to. 

I was enrolled in classes that were out of my element. I was being berated for my writing styles and it made finding time to write a task to be fought against. I was losing my passion. For a moment, I no longer wanted to write. I had excelled in all of my classes before, but suddenly I was average. This instructor had no words of advice that ever helped, and all I was hearing was I would never be good enough. I let it get to the best of me and I took it all to heart. I felt like everything I ever wanted did not matter anymore.

It has been only a few days since the completion of my final exam of the semester. I spent the remaining days running around for a new job, interviewing for multiple internships, and trying to stay a float in all of my other tasks. I received an offer for an amazing internship, and came in second for the dream internship.

However, it was the circumstances for the dream internship that got me thinking. A woman working in Human Resources reached out to me on a professional website, in regards to if I had any interest in an opening at their company. I was immediately floored and ecstatic. I hoped on a call with the senior editor, and she asked “where have I seen your writing samples?” I was immediately torn, I had not sent any in, and now I felt like anything I had written in the past was not good enough.

There was a little silence on my end, and a bit of worry surrounding if she had found my old freelance work I had done during undergrad. Then she listed out my blog, this blog, and told me that she loved my style. Firstly, it was so strange to hear that because not even my boyfriend has read any of my blog, but then for a moment, I felt blissful. No one in my personal bubble knows about this space, so meeting someone who knew it was exciting.

I was always recognized by the writing I did in the past. I felt so good blogging, but during school I left that part out of my life. I placed it on pause. However, with the summer upon me and my first week heading into the work place of New York, there is a lot of change to be coming in my life. The relaunch of my blog, will follow, because I have so much to share.