The melody fades in, synth-pop beat pulsing through the speakers like a heartbeat. (Taylor Swift always knows the way to my heart) “All of my heroes die all alone, help me hold onto you” she sings with a rawness that cuts you to your core. Leave it to a song wrapped up in pretty pop to make you feel everything you’ve ever felt topped with a sense of nostalgia (my favorite word recently) that you can’t quite explain.
It’s a heartbreakingly accurate description of anxiety in both relationships and in life. The sentiment of “Who could ever leave me darlin’, but who could stay?” is almost certainly universal, self deprecation and doubt plaguing our minds like some sort of flesh-eating monster out of a horror film. The realization that we are human comes with the powerful notion that we screw up. Sometimes we’re the toxic one that every self care article tells you to cut out of your life, no questions asked. Sometimes we do the hurting rather than getting hurt. Sometimes we say things we regret.
And then we grow and learn from our mistakes and the less-than-pretty attitudes and the messy heartaches. But we still question. What if it’s me? What if something’s wrong with me?
And then there’s the pain we’re on the receiving end of. The kind that cuts you like a knife and knocks the breath out of you. Why aren’t I good enough? What if something’s wrong with me? The questioning and doubt gnaw at you and you suddenly wonder if it’s still you after all.
I think the complexity of letting love into our lives- no matter the kind- is something we don’t know what to do with. It’s a mess of vulnerability and fear and sheer happiness whilst secretly wondering when it’s all going to end, when the other shoe will drop. When we can recognize this is when we can truly grow.
It’s when you recognize this that you will come to terms with the fact that some people will leave. Some will run out of your life without a second glance, and you have to pick the pieces of yourself off the ground and move on. Find the ones that you know will hold onto you, no matter your dark side. You’ll let healing in in place of the self doubt, and you’ll find it’s so much brighter on the other side.