Well, I guess I should start by saying thank you. If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t be where I am. I’m not happy with it every day, and yeah there are times I wish we had worked. But you taught me so much. I learned to stand up for myself. I learned that I am stronger than I thought. I learned that I do not need a man. I learned how to chase my dream. I learned that I wasn’t ready to be stuck anywhere. I learned who I am, and who I can be.
You always assumed that I would never leave, honestly, I assumed that too. Leaving you was one of the scariest things I have ever done. I fought with myself for weeks about it. Sure, I was miserable and had no friends and hated my life but at least I had security. Security is one of the best things a girl can have. But I had to leave, because I couldn’t live like that. I couldn’t live every day of my life hearing that I wasn’t pretty enough, that I wasn’t smart enough, that I had to stay with you because no one else could ever love me. I couldn’t stay with someone who didn’t care about my dreams and passions. I still remember you telling me I would be a horrible mother. You told me to never wear my hair up because it looked ugly. “You can’t go out like that”, “Don’t you want to put on makeup?” “You need to change, you are a mess.” You were never kidding. You were totally serious every single time. You said a lot of things I will never forget.
The thing is, if you hadn’t told me all of those things I never would have broken. But I needed to break. Breaking lead me to following my dreams because I had nothing left holding me back. When everything crashed and burned and I handed you my ring, I had nothing keeping me in a small town in Texas. I was finishing up an internship, my family had moved away a couple years ago. I had the world open to me for the first time. I needed that.
I applied for an internship in Florida to get me out of Texas, and 5 months later I was living in Florida. I had a clean slate, I could make friends that were mine and not yours. I wasn’t being pulled to dinners and baseball games just so you could show off that you had a girl. I got to start rebuilding my life, not the one you had decided for me. I was finally free.
There are still nights where I wonder what would have happened if I had kept quiet and married you. Your family made it known that I wasn’t ever welcome. There probably would have been a lot of uncomfortable holidays. I guess I miss the security of having someone there. I do not miss having to fake my happiness though.
Ultimately, you taught me just how strong I am. Ultimately, you taught me that I am not owned by anyone. I learned so much over the last two years. I would have never know who I could become. I am my own beautiful person. I needed to learn to love myself. I needed to learn to find the beauty in the world. I had to hit the bottom before I could start to go up. You created a woman who was burned by flames, but she learned to walk through them. Thank you for breaking me, because I came out so much stronger.