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One year ago today, I pressed publish on the most painful post I’ve ever written. I had been lost in what had grown to be an unhealthy relationship, and the brutal way that it ended pushed me into one of the darkest periods of my life. I was quite certain that I felt my soul was being ripped right out of my body, and I didn’t see any end to the ocean of pain that I was in. Life held no joy. It seemed at times like it might drown me.

One year later, and I survived.

One year later, and I am happier than I ever thought possible. One year later, and I smile every day. I am healthier, both physically and mentally. I am living my dream of traveling the world. I feel more confident in who I am and what I am doing on this earth. To quote Katy Perry (because who doesn’t like to quote pop songs when baring their soul?), I am wide awake. One year later, and I look around at my life with overwhelming gratitude.

This year, and the painful period of my life that immediately preceded it, taught me so much. On this funny little anniversary, I want to pause to remember that most of the cliches are true — what doesn’t kill you does make you stronger, and there are more fish in the sea, and wounds are healed by time, and all that. And thus, a few hard-earned lessons from this year —

1. To Trust My Intuition

Much of the pain that I went through last year could have been lessened — or at the least expedited — had I listened to my intuition. I knew that something was very, very wrong in my relationship and that I wasn’t living in truth, but I had become an expert at muffling the sirens going off in my head. I did it for a lot of reasons, one of them being I had spent so many years madly in love with my boyfriend that I almost forgot it was an option not to be with him. Another, I’m sad to say, was that I didn’t have the confidence that I could live the lifestyle we were in by myself. Today seems unimaginable, but at the time I had become so dangerously dependent on another person that I couldn’t imagine going it alone. And so I dismissed my intuition as anxiety and over-imagination and continued living on pins and needles.

Today, I know that when something feels off, that’s because it is. I recognize that my intuition is one of my greatest assets and I respect this gift that I have been given. I will try never to betray myself by silencing it again.

2. To Accept Life Rafts Without Drowning Others

I am blessed with a unbelievable web of people who love me — caring family members and compassionate friends who stood by me in a time that I could barely stand myself. In the midst of my sorrow I was constantly humbled by the ways in which people reached out to me.

But there is a line. As time went on and I was still struggling with pain and anger, I could see the thinning patience on my friends’ faces. They wanted to the old Meihoukai back, but I didn’t even remember who she was. I was still flailing in that sea of misery, and I was trying so hard to climb onto people to use them as life rafts that I almost drowned a few in the process.

In the future, when I am in crisis, I will remember that line. One mistake I made in recovering from this particular life blow was not seeking professional help, which would have eased the burden on my friendships. Nothing is more important to me than my relationships with family and friends, and I need to remember to protect those bonds with everything I have.

3. To Make Every Moment Count

In the immediate aftermath, when I was still numb from shock and simply going through the motions of saying goodbye to my life in Thailand, a friend gave me some serious wisdom. “Life is going to be like a miserable hellfire for quite some time, okay? So you can sit in bed watching Dexter reruns like a zombie, or you can just learn to function through the pain and at least do something productive with this horrible period of your life. Every day is going to be shit for a while no matter what. You might as well make it count.”

And yes, I did sit in bed and watch Dexter reruns for a while — duh. But I took that advice to heart and forced myself to go through the motions of keeping up with my work, going to the gym, and even socializing when it was least what I wanted to do. I booked myself the craziest summer schedule of all times, following the “action is the enemy of introspection” school of thought. When I finally turned a corner, both emotionally and mentally in Hawaii, I could look back on the previous six months and while I knew they had been full of pain they had also been filled with progress. I know that moving forward I will give this advice to anyone sitting at rock bottom like I was — eyes forward, one foot in front of the other, and savor the small moments of joy that break through the seemingly impenetrable wall of awful.

And this lesson, to make every moment count, has another meaning for me as well. While Mark was not the first man I loved, he was the first I considered to be a true partner in life. While I may have logically accepted that someday he might not be by my side, accepting it in reality chilled me to the bone. There were times that I was so naively confident in what we had that I didn’t savor the moments, or work to make sure they would last. Impermanence is a concept that I struggle with and fight against, but in many ways it can be a gift. Accepting that even the most special relationship won’t last forever is a reminder to enjoy every moment that it does. I will take this with me into my future relationships.

4. To Find Joy in Solitude

When I got back to New york after my life in Thailand fell apart I went out for drinks with one of my dearest friends and lamented how I dreaded traveling alone, how I didn’t know how I’d make it work. “Someday you’re going to realize that it was you all along,” she told me, and I probably rolled my eyes or burst into tears or something equally eloquent in response. But she was right.

In the stillness of time spent alone, I have learned to hear myself more clearly. I have realized how capable I am of making friends, and being funny, and being spontaneous, and all the many things that I always thought I was relying on someone else for. These days, when I spend too much time with another person I actually find myself wistful for my own company. I know the true joy of being confident that there is very little I can’t achieve on my own.

Thank You

I wanted to write this post for a few reasons. One, perhaps to be a life raft to someone else going through a hard time and wondering if life will ever stop raining on them. Two, as a thank you to those that held my hand in real life and didn’t let go, and as a virtual cheers to those of you that reached out to me through comments, emails and messages in my darkest hour. Your kindness and compassion and wisdom astounds me and I can only hope that I can pay forward a fraction of that next time I see someone struggling as I was.

I’ve never been happier. Just three hundred and sixty five days ago, there were moments where I didn’t think that was possible in this lifetime, let alone in one year… but a lot of you did. To everyone who reads here, shares my experiences with me, and comes along for the ride — thank you for being part of something that makes me smile everyday.

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82 Comments...
  • Rob
    April 18 2013

    We are remarkably resilient animals. As my life (longer than yours, so far) has unfolded it has fascinated me how the death of relationships, parents, friends, and other life trauma that seems beyond recovering fades with time and (if you’re lucky) becomes a lesson from which to learn.

    Guess that’s what hundreds of thousands of generations of evolution will do for us. Vast complexity, and resilience.

    • Meihoukai
      April 18 2013

      Beautifully stated. In my short life I’ve had a few traumas that I expected I might not fully recover from… and yet I always do, and emerge with a much clearer picture of the world. Funny how life decides to deliver lessons…

      • Rob
        April 18 2013

        Indeed. I don’t think (although once I did) that we are fully human without sharing some of the pain that our species has as its shared heritage. Love, death, sadness – they’re all part of who we are as members of our species.

        All that said, BTW, I’m still happy things are going well for you. As my friends are more than tired of me pointing out, life is good!

    • Frank
      April 18 2013

      As much as I hate admitting that cliches are true, time truly does heal (or at least numb way better than a lifetime of vodka tonics) all wounds. Heartbreak and pain are sadly necessary parts of life that in the end help you to keep from being broken by the world.

      As one of the older folks as well (ha) I have to say that Rob is right. We are resilient and it’s the way we approach difficulties that help determine and shape our happiness.

      • Meihoukai
        April 19 2013

        I also like to think of heartbreak and pain as downpayments on future happiness… you have to have the lows to really appreciate the highs!

  • Erika
    April 18 2013

    Wow! Thank you so much for sharing that, Meihoukai! Like you said, that’s just a painful thing in general to discuss, but I’m so glad you opened up and gave the follow up! It’s amazing that you’ve become stronger, happier, and more independent as a result of what happened. Took a lot of pain to get there, but it ends up being worth it in the end! šŸ™‚

    I find that as I get older, I am also enjoying my own company much more. It’s a strange thing to not NEED to be surrounded by at least one other person all the time. It’s even stranger when in some cases, you prefer it. šŸ˜‰

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      So true! I now consider myself an introvert/extrovert hybrid… I have long stretches of time in which I cherish being alone and doing solitary activities, and then I’ll go wild for a while with socializing and going out and enjoying the company of others. It’s a balance!

  • Kate
    April 18 2013

    Thanks for your insightful and totally relatable post Meihoukai. I’ve been enjoying your work!

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Thank you Kate! I appreciate it šŸ™‚

  • memographer
    April 18 2013

    Keep smiling, Meihoukai!
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  • grandma joyce
    April 18 2013

    Good for you, Meihoukai !!!!!!!!! Well put.

  • Steve
    April 18 2013

    They say the things that hurt us will make us stronger in the end. Good to see that you are enjoying your life again. This shows in your blog which I have been enjoying reading.
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    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Thanks Steve! I have so much to enjoy and so much to be thankful for, I’d be crazy if I wasn’t!

  • Leah
    April 18 2013

    I love this so much. You are insightful beyond your years, and everything you wrote encapsulates my own realizations post-devastating break-up. Especially trusting your intuition/gut feeling and appreciating every moment during your relationship. Thank you for being so honest, and I am so happy you are so happy šŸ™‚

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Leah, what a sweet comment! Thank you so much for this šŸ™‚

  • Mike
    April 18 2013

    Thank you for writing this. Right now, I’m stuck in a bit of a dilemma myself as I want to travel and teach abroad, but my girlfriend of 3 years doesn’t want to and basically gave an ultimatum that we’re breaking up if I go abroad. I love her but also want to have this experience as I know it will be unforgettable. It saddens me to think our relationship might be ending but I believe if I stay I may resent her for not going. Thank you for writing such an honest and open post.
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    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      That sounds like a tough situation, Mike. The only advice I can give is that if something feels like a sacrifice… than it isn’t meant to be. When it’s right, it won’t feel like a sacrifice at all! Good luck in your decision and in your travels!

  • Brian
    April 18 2013

    To quote my letter to you from almost a year ago “I won’t lie, you’re going to feel like shit for a while still but it does definitely get better, and faster than you might expect.” Hate to say I told you so…

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Believe it or not I could quote you back several things you said to me in that letter from memory. Another thing this year taught me is that my friends are a billion times wiser than I could ever hope to be!

  • Philip
    April 18 2013

    Congrats on making it to one year! Ironically, I happened across your blog exactly one year ago, and the first post I read was about your breakup… so, reading your post today reminded me of the many fun, difficult, stressful, and sad things that happened in my life over the past year. It also made me realize, once again, that time flies by way too quickly!

    You’re a very talented writer, and I enjoy reading about your adventures. I hope to one day free myself from these corporate chains and get back out on the traveler’s road. In the meantime, I live vicariously through your, and many other travel hacker’s, blog updates.

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Philip, I hear you! It was definitely a shock to realize a full year had gone by. Time is so precious and moves so fast. I appreciate your kind words and I’m glad to hear I didn’t scare you away with that first post! šŸ™‚

  • Jes
    April 18 2013

    I like this a lot. That is all. šŸ™‚

  • Amandine
    April 18 2013

    I’ve discovered this blog a few weeks ago while planning my next trip to SEA and I’ve devoured it.
    It’s beautiful and this post comes just at a perfect time.
    I’m in a similar state as you were one year ago and it gives me real hope for the few monthes to come.
    So I really needed to thank you, thank you so much and wish you all the best šŸ™‚

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      I’m so very glad to hear that! This was a somewhat difficult post to write and it makes it worth it to hear I gave a glimmer of hope to someone else going through a rough time. Stay strong!

  • Rika | Cubicle Throwdown
    April 18 2013

    Wow, a year already. I’m so glad you’ve come out the other side, learned some (albeit tough) life lessons, and are living the good life again. I am still struggling with that part, and your lessons learned were a good reminder for me. And I have to give you kudos Meihoukai, for not once speaking ill of Mark on this rather large internet platform you’ve created…you have maturity beyond your years. I’m much older than you and probably wouldn’t have been able to restrain myself šŸ™‚ Cheers to you and the road ahead! xx
    Rika | Cubicle Throwdown recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Thanks Rika! Of course its tempting to shout from the rooftops when someone wrongs you but in this case I never even felt the urge. Mark’s family and friends treated me with overwhelming love and respect from the moment I met them and I would never want to cause them discomfort with my words. It was the right decision as I’m still friends with many of them today!

  • Naomi
    April 18 2013

    I, like Philip, first found your blog a year ago when you had just wrote your blog about your breakup A lot of what you wrote rang true as I had just broken up with my bf as I was going off travelling. The intuition point you make is so true and as hard as it was, I am now eternally grateful that we did split up. It forced me to properly assess where I was going. Now, my self-esteem and confidence is at an all-time high and I am doing what I want to do. They say everything happens for a reason,a saying I now fully advocate! Some very wise words Meihoukai – it seems that you’re putting into practise #3 a lot!
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    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Hi Naomi! I’m sorry to hear you went through something similar (because you know then what a dark hole it can be) but I’m thrilled to hear you’ve come out the other side. One cliche I didn’t quite work into this post is one I actually do believe in greatly… it takes pressure to make a diamond!

  • Laura
    April 18 2013

    Meihoukai, you are a survivor. I knew you would be ok but it broke my heart you were so sad for awhile. You look and sound great. I’m happy for you. BTW can’t wait for you to come home šŸ™‚

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      I love you Laura! I know your family will be there for me no matter what happens in my life and that is such a gift. I can’t wait to see you!

  • I knew you were going to come out of this healthier, happier, stronger, and wiser!!! My heart broke for you when I knew how much pain you were in, but I also knew that you had to go through that pain to get to the other side. Your writing is so eloquent and poignant!!! I’m always here for you FYI.
    Andi of My Beautiful Adventures recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      You are the best Andi! I loved our email exchanges and they were definitely a life raft for me. I could feel your empathy radiating from Charlotte! xoxox

  • Gaelyn
    April 18 2013

    If we can open our minds to learn from each person that shares our lives we are the better for it. Then we must share these feelings to help others as well. I am impressed from one so young to realize and move on. It will happen again and again. With each a new lesson learned. Thanks for sharing this.
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    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Thank you Gaelyn! You put that very beautifully, and I agree with every word.

  • Julie
    April 18 2013

    I wish to echo all the praise for the insightful, eloquent post on a difficult time and add that I love the final photo you included. It put a big smile on my face at the end of a very long day. Keep going Lady!
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    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Thanks Julie šŸ™‚ That photo is from the last big night I had out with my friends in Brooklyn before leaving on this trip. It was so fun… I miss them so much!

  • Kristen Noelle
    April 19 2013

    There’s not much else I can say that hasn’t been covered, but thank YOU. Thank you for being so genuine and as real as you can be, I just know that sharing your life for the world to see is far from easy. I really, really enjoy this blog not only for your travel trips and adventures but for the general life lessons too. You continue to inspire and I am so happy for you! Cheers to being happy, to living you dream. =]

    Kristen

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Kristen, this comment made my night! Thank you so much for your kind words, and for inspiring me to keep writing like I do! It means the world to me.

  • Steph (@ 20 Years Hence)
    April 19 2013

    While I don’t agree that things that don’t kill us necessarily make us stronger, I am still very glad to see how wonderfully you are flourish a year after your heartbreak! It seems like you have really managed to take all that pain you were feeling and transform it into something good in the end. Sometimes the best we can do is simply survive the bad things that happen to us, but it seems you have used them as an impetus to thrive. Very excited to see the places you go from here!
    Steph (@ 20 Years Hence) recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Thank you Steph! I agree that there are some blows that just can’t really be recovered from. Yet I’ve been shocked to watch people in my life overcome struggles that I would have thought for sure would break them. The human spirit is so resilient! Your kind words are much appreciated!

  • Meihoukai. I can’t tell you how much hope you’ve given me just from reading this post. In August last year my boyfriend of 6 years and I broke up. We’re from England and had travelled and lived in Australia together for 2 years before arriving in New Zealand where it basically all fell apart. I have so much regret and am still struggling to get over it, even now, and I hope that in August this year I will feel as positive as you do. There are still times when, like you say, it honestly feels like someone is ripping my heart out. But there are also good days when I’m exploring new places in New Zealand with my new friends and feeling truly grateful for my life.

    So, thank you. I love this post.
    Beverley | Pack Your Passport recently posted..

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Beverley! Well clearly I don’t need to tell you I know where you are right now. As I said in this post, savor those moments when life feels good, because they are going to happen more and more often until eventually life is back to one big happy blur šŸ™‚ And you’re already out living life to the fullest — enjoy New Zealand and email me if you ever need to chat!

  • Shaun
    April 19 2013

    4. To Find Joy in Solitude

    Epic.

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Even more epic is finding it! I wish the ability to enjoy one’s one company to everyone. It’s such a life skill! šŸ™‚

  • Dorian
    April 19 2013

    I went through a similar situation with my ex-boyfriend, we had planned to spend a month volunteering together in Chiang Mai, Thailand and not only did I find out he was cheating on me, he ended up taking his new girlfriend on our trip. While I was deeply devastated by what happened, the one thing I learned from the experience was that my dreams are my own and it is my responsibility to make them come true. Since the breakup, I’ve re-created myself by finding solace in doing everything he told me I couldn’t do without him. I found your blog and with every post it has inspired me to continue traveling, diving, and living. So thank you for this post, and know you are loved by those who you have yet to meet.

    • Meihoukai
      April 19 2013

      Wow, that must have bee heart-wrenching. Sounds like we had similar realizations about our abilities to conquer the world by ourselves! I love what you said about it being your responsibility and your alone to make your dreams come true. I’m so happy to know you are reading!

  • Sarah Somewhere
    April 20 2013

    Meihoukai, bravo, you completely rock! You are such a beautiful person and this post, along with everything you have achieved, learned and worked through in the last year is a testament to that. Thank you for being brave enough to show that behind the gorgeous glossy photos and professional prose is a real person with the same struggles as everyone else. Your happiness and inner strength shines through work and you should be so proud! Xxx
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    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      Sarah, you are too sweet. As I’ve said before, we need to meet again now that I’m out of my hole… though I do feel we know each other through our writing! I really treasure this comment and I’m sure I will read it many times to come šŸ™‚

  • Ash
    April 20 2013

    Meihoukai Thank You for this inspiring post,,,You made my day beautiful and gave me strength and courage to fulfill dreams in my life!

    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      Thank you for the compliment, and best of luck in chasing those dreams!

  • Caty
    April 20 2013

    So happy to see you this happy again!what a beautifully written post. I am so glad you made it through this. Wish I could say the same about me but I am still struggling.but I am trying…maybe Argentina will be my Hawaii and I will find my former happy self again!you give me hope and btw you look absolutely gorgeous!

    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      Caty I’m so sorry to hear you are still struggling but I know (in the same way that everyone who told me before knew!) that it WILL happen. Just trust yourself and know the healing will happen eventually. And yes, best of luck in Argentina!

  • Veronica
    April 20 2013

    It’s great to read such a real, honest and inspiring post. How wonderful you are now happier and can look back with no regrets :).
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    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      Well, to be honest I certainly still have regrets about a lot of things from the pre-breakup period in my life. But I have chosen to forgive myself for doing what I thought was right at the time and just learn from it instead… and that’s how I learned the lessons listed here šŸ™‚

  • Katherine
    April 20 2013

    Your post really touches my heart, thank you Meihoukai!

    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      Thank you for reading Katherine šŸ™‚

  • Jade
    April 21 2013

    It is incredible how much can change in a year, for better and for worse sometimes. Everything you’ve said is so inspiring and I can imagine that this post will help people for a long time to come. And that is the amazing power that our words have, especially when you are so willing to be so public about it- to help others.
    It’s been a joy to have watched your journey so far and I look forward to doing so for as long as it goes on!

    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      Jade, thank you so much! I think the whole point of blogging is to show the journey — warts and all! The true inspirational stories are the ones where you know everything the person had to overcome.

  • Kristin Addis
    April 21 2013

    I can definitely identify. I look forward to the time when I’m happy and secure in the end of my most recent relationship. Getting ever closer, but for some reason, as a traveler it’s not as easy to get past! Maybe it’s not having friends around from back home to lean on.

    • Meihoukai
      April 22 2013

      I totally agree, and I also think that the lack of routine makes it more difficult. There’s no “put one foot in front of the other, go to work, have your favorite takeaway and watch your Tuesday show.” You can’t just switch on autopilot and go through the motions, which is sometimes what is necessary after a trauma. But you’ll get there….

  • Meihoukaiandra
    April 22 2013

    Meihoukai, this post came at probably the best time for me to read, too, as my boyfriend and I had a meltdown trying to figure out where we are going with our lives given our hometowns (NYC and Sydney) are literally on opposite ends of the planet. I was sitting there in the kitchen and felt so hopeless and lost and confused about it all, and then I logged on to your blog and felt this weight off my shoulders. you said so many things that made so much sense. You make the alexandra name proud!
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    • Meihoukai
      April 23 2013

      Meihoukaiandra, I’m so so glad that you got something out of this post šŸ™‚ I’m sending you lots of good decision making vibes!

  • Sam
    April 25 2013

    You amaze me! This post is incredible. I don’t even know what to say, my mind is blown. I’m very happy that you are happy.
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    • Meihoukai
      April 26 2013

      Thanks, Sam. As you know it was a windy road to get here but I couldn’t be in a better place.

  • Amy
    April 26 2013

    Such an inspirational post Meihoukai. I’m sure we’ve all experienced crippling heart-break but not everyone deals with it as productively as you have; even though you were struggling, you managed to keep this blog up-beat, interesting and funny – that’s quite an achievement.

    • Meihoukai
      April 28 2013

      Amy, that is such a meaningful compliment and I really do treasure it. Sometimes I felt like my bad moods were seeping into every blog posts, even when I was trying to convey something that made me very happy! So I’m glad to hear I managed to keep things happy around here šŸ™‚

  • Hailey
    May 14 2013

    I’m going through something similar myself at the moment: going through a truly soul-destroying breakup up with my boyfriend of 5 years, who was my best friend for 5 years before that. There’s just so much ill feeling there but I don’t want to completely lose his person who’s been in my life for so long; if we could get the friendship back I would feel less like it had all been pointless, like we destroyed a wonderful friendship for nothing.

    What are your thoughts on this? Do you still speak to your ex at all? Do you think you could be friends again?

    • Meihoukai
      May 17 2013

      Hey Hailey, I’m so sorry to hear you’re in a dark place — clearly, I’ve been there. In my case, no, my ex and I have no . Our relationship ended on very bad terms and honestly I didn’t really get over it until we severed all communication. I don’t think that will be the case for everyone, but I would probably recommend a long period of no in any situation, just so you can have lots of time to clear your mind and be sure that you are hearing your own voice clearly. Best of luck, and feel free to email me anytime…

  • Rachel
    June 11 2013

    This is a truly beautiful post. I’m currently at the beginning stages of setting forth on my SEA journey and life adventures. I too have gone through a painful breakup recently and have essentially blown up the rest of my life in order to break free to pursue travel. It’s a desire and passion I have put off for far too long for far too many reasons. I truly hope to discover joy in solitude as you have!

    Thank you for sharing your heart so openly. It was soothing and inspiring for me.

    • Meihoukai
      June 12 2013

      Thank you so much for saying so Rachel… it really brings me joy to know that my soul-baring brings some peace to someone out there! I feel confident that travel will bring you to the same place it brought me. Good luck!

  • Maddy
    July 7 2013

    I feel so late to this game, catching up on all of these posts and moments that other readers were experiencing with you in “real time” (or as close as possible), so this comment may be kind of silly at such a late date, but I just wanted to say, you are so strong and resilient! And thoughtful, and self-reflective. From the few posts I’ve read so far it seems as if you are great at taking bad things and turning them into learning experiences, or at the very least, not turning them into regrets that weigh you down. Way to go! šŸ™‚ I think that is the key to getting through life – opening yourself up, letting things happen, learning from them, and not letting the bad parts hold you back. Major props to you.
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    • Meihoukai
      July 8 2013

      Maddy, I really appreciate getting comments on “old” posts — it lets me know that they are still being read, and that makes me happy! So thank you for that and for all your kind words here. I never thought of myself as having that quality, but I really cherish it in other people, so thank you, thank you!

  • Maddy
    October 7 2013

    addendum to earlier comment and/or email I sent you – you’re right, this did help šŸ™‚

  • Ashley
    February 16 2016

    I just commented on your first post about this subject with something similar but seriously, I just need to thank you again because this post is giving me so much hope.

    I’m doing exactly what you did and learning exactly the lessons you learned during this, the most horrific avalanche of emotional pain that I’ve ever experienced. I’m learning to forgive myself for not trusting my instincts and ending it when I knew something was wrong, far before I found out for sure. I’m filling my life with friends and family as much as possible. I’ve planned and bought the plane tickets for an insane solo travel schedule over the next year. I’m exercising daily. I’m seeing a therapist, because I had to admit that this was a level of agony I couldn’t handle by myself. And yes, I’m watching all 12 seasons of Grey’s Anatomy under the covers when I feel like I can’t bring myself to get out of bed.

    Thank you, thank you, thank you. Right now seeing your happiness and recovery is giving me hope that maybe a year from now, I will be OK too.

    • Meihoukai
      February 16 2016

      You will — I know it. Sounds like you are doing EVERYTHING right to take care of yourself, and please do stop and give yourself a big ‘ol round of applause for that. You’ll be amazed how far you come in a year. Enjoy that amazing sounding trip!

  • Char
    February 6 2017

    Hey Meihoukai! Just thought id let you know, after just being dumped in a very brutal way out of no where and suffering for the last few days, something reminded me to come here. Reading this blog post is already setting me on the right path, reminding me things will get better but also that it’s ok to hurt!

    Thanks again Meihoukai, your writing sometimes really is all I need! Xx

    • Meihoukai
      February 6 2017

      Hey Char, ugh, I have been there — clearly. So sorry you are going through this but I can tell you that one year later feels damn good, and five years later? Damn GREAT. Just listen to lots and lots of Katy Perry šŸ™‚ On another note, thank you for this comment and reminding me why I push myself to write the hard posts <3

  • Keri
    September 19 2017

    I know this post is now years old, but I wanted to say thank you. Reading it made me cry. I feel like I’m at the bottom right now, going through the same thing as you did. I thought I had a future with someone and now that future doesn’t exist. You really put into words how grief feels. I’m a month in and I feel like everyone thinks I should be fine now, and I worry that I still hurt as much as I did when it happened. You’ve always inspired me, and I’ve always dreamed of traveling like you do. Now I have the chance to, but the idea of letting go of what I had still frightens me. Ill take your advise and just put one foot in front of the other for now.

    • Meihoukai
      September 22 2017

      Ah Keri, I’m so sorry you’re at the bottom of the pit right now. I’m here to promise you’ll crawl out of it! One foot in front of the other, and try to focus on the amazing things that you now have the opportunities to do. I know sometimes nothing sounds fun or feels like something to look forward to… but it will eventually. Thinking of you and sending you lots of healing vibes and love!