Have you ever wanted someone to pack up all of the feelings you have for them and take it with them? Imagine being able to move on so easily because the feelings you once had for someone were carried away with the end of the relationship. Gosh, how nice would that be. To rid yourself from the emotional tug of war of wanting someone around that you know you have no business no longer entertaining. Oh, how feelings and emotions weigh so heavily on you when the right thing to do all along was to just let the person go. The thing is, even when you let them go, the residue from those deep emotions you once felt for them remain with you. Sometimes the feelings restrain you from moving on, while other times they leave you constantly having to check yourself. You know what I’m talking about. Those moments you have to remind yourself that they were no good and probably still are no good, however, something in you still wants them around. It’s like a game of mental gymnastics; a competition between you, your better judgement, and your feelings and emotions.

“No matter how I think we grow
You always seem to let me know
It ain’t workin’, It ain’t workin’ (No, it ain’t workin’)
And when I try to walk away
You’d hurt yourself to make me stay
This is crazy, this is crazy (This is crazy, uh-huh)”

-Lauryn Hill – “Ex-Factor”

Maybe it really is just the strong emotions you felt for that person, or maybe that longing you feel is just familiarity blended in with feelings of fear. Honestly, maybe it is a bit of both. Then again, maybe it’s the idea that you do not want to go through the dating process again; re-getting to know someone and putting your feelings back on the table to get hurt all over again. None of these sounds ideal, if you ask me. They all sound like trash options. So what does one do when the emotional stake is so high and all you can do is think about this one person who meant so much to you but ain’t worth a damn? That is an answer I honestly do not have. The one thing that has always worked for me is remaining patient with myself, though this is something I too often find challenging. It’s sometimes hard to resist someone you want around that you know is toxic and goes against your better judgement. Maybe that’s exactly what makes it so luring. Think of it as your favorite vice. That one thing that you know you are not supposed to have, or should wean yourself off of, but you just can’t seem to get enough of. You just want to shout leave me alone, while running forward at the same time to embrace the very thing you’re running from. It’s like watching yourself run forwards and backwards all at the same time, defying physics, knowing that when your legs are moving forward your body should not simultaneously be going backwards. I mean, what the heck is that?

I changed my mind, Ooh
(I don’t love you) I don’t love you
(I don’t love you no more)
No no no no no
Don’t waste my time (Don’t waste my time)
(I don’t love you)
(I don’t love you no more) No no

Keyshia Cole – “Ive Changed My Mind”

You may try to convince yourself that you’ve changed your mind and no longer like or love them. As great as that sounds to say out loud, it’s genuinely the complete opposite oh how you may be feeling. You may sit and realize, I do still love them. I still like them. I do still want them around me. How could this pull to have this person around be so strong when you know they aren’t worth your time, space, or energy? You just got to move on, however, you’re stuck on them. And because you’re stuck on them, you have to constantly remind yourself to be patient with both yourself and your emotions. You’ll grow to not crave them, with time. You’ll also grow to not want them in your space, with time. You’ll grow to adjust without having them around, again, with time. The hard part about all of this is forcing yourself to create that boundary needed to keep them away from your space. It’s so frustrating to feel like you’re drinking juice that makes you feel dumb, inhibiting your better judgment to be smart and play it safe, while attempting to push forward and move on. Going up and down on that emotional rollercoaster is just far too draining.

“I’m on an emotional rollercoaster
Lovin’ you ain’t nothin’ healthy
Lovin’ you was never good for me (For me)
But I can’t get off
This emotional rollercoaster
Lovin’ you ain’t nothin’ healthy
Lovin’ you was never good for me (For me, oh)
But I can’t get off”
-Vivian Green – “Emotional Rollercoaster”

You may be like me and go through the motions of telling yourself, this is the last time. Telling yourself that you won’t give them any more chances after this, only to realize you are now at the third, forth, and fifth chance, believing that they will do better. You may hold on to the thought of telling yourself that you see their potential, knowing that they can be better. The one thing you’re constantly overlooking is, where is the better? The better has not arrived and honestly, it’s probably likely that it won’t come, and that’s okay. You’re not dumb for trying so hard or caring so much, nor are you dumb for giving them the opportunity (-ies) to prove to you that they could be better. If anything, they fumbled the ball. The one thing you’re losing out on is time, the time that you spent giving a precious opportunity to someone else. The thing is, they are the ones that are truly missing out on something great, not you.

Heard it all before (heard it all before)
All of ya lies, all of ya sweet talk
Baby this, Baby that
But your lies ain’t working now look who’s hurting now
See I had to shut you down (I had to shut you down)

Played the fool before (played the fool before)
I was your fool I believed in you
Yes I did yes I did
But your lies ain’t working now look who’s hurting now
See I had to shut you down (I had to shut you down)

-Sunshine Anderson -“Heard It All Before”

One thing to remember, is that everyone does not deserve the opportunity to hold onto to you. Sometimes people only deserve to embrace you momentarily and not permanently. Maybe you were that person they had to lose to become better for someone else, or maybe they’re the person that taught you what it is that you do and don’t deserve. Now here we are, and you didn’t work out for a reason. As painful as that may be to hear, it’s the truth. Whether the reason is clear to you right now, or ten years from now, you deserve better. Now, I’m not saying to not give them any more chances. We know staying away from someone you genuinely care for is hard. Hell, maybe it’s not the emotions that are keeping you around but the notion of not wanting to be lonely. That’s all okay too. The one thing that you should be doing though, is protecting your feelings and emotions. If you know the likelihood of them doing xyz again, then prepare yourself for that moment. And yes, it won’t feel any better the next time. Yes, you will feel like you’re dumb all over again but at least you prepared yourself to feel that way. The question you should ask yourself now is, how many times and how many chances are you going to give them before realizing, they’re just not good enough for you. To be honest, they were never good enough for you. They’ll probably never measure up to the potential you see in them, for you. Yes, I said for for you because we all know how it feels to watch someone you put so much time into, be their best self for someone else. Quite frankly, it sucks. However, you knew they were never going to be that person for you. You knew at the first red flag you saw that you just so graciously brushed over because you actually caught feelings for them. How much longer will your feelings be the stomping ground for someone who repeatedly continues to disregard them? From what I’ve learned, the best clarification when dealing with this matter, is learning that you’re just too damn good for some people. Society teaches us to not talk like this, but I’m here to tell you that you can. Speak your worth; own it. Claim what it is you are and manifest what it is you want. You know what you deserve and honestly, that ain’t it.

I’m too good to you
I’m way too good to you
You take my love for granted
I just don’t understand it
No, I’m too good to you
I’m way too good to you
You take my love for granted
I just don’t understand it

-Drake ft. Rihanna – “Too Good”

Drake ft. Rihanna. “Too Good.” Views. Young Money Entertainment/Cash Money Records, 2016.
Jazmine Sullivan. “Pick Up Your Feelings.” Single. RCA Records, 2020.
Keyshia Cole. “Ive Changed My Mind.” Keyshia Cole. A&M Records, 2005.
Photo Source: https://spiritualityhealth.com/articles/2016/09/05/15-affirmations-getting-out-bad-situation
Sunshine Anderson. “Heard It All Before.” Your Woman. Soulife Entertainment Holdings, Inc., A Label of Atlantic Recording Corporation, 2001.
Vivian Green. “Emotional Rollercoaster.” Sony Music Entertainment, LLC, 2002.