Thailand felt like the nail in the coffin, to sum it up nicely. What a sweet way to have a cathartic experience. To be able to stare off with a cocktail and cigarette in hand and watch monkeys pitter across the rooftop of your hotel from your personal patio. The lush greenery and the humidity that meant no pants, no shoes just bug spray and a dress. The beaches and morning walks, the sunsets. It all healed.
I read a book that moved me beyond my cyclical thoughts- so this is not to say that I did it all on my own. “The Untethered Soul” by Michael A. Singer, a book that seemed a little too Oprah for me, got right down to business. To be able to reverse out of the heavy thoughts, the hoping that some divine power was going to push my ex to contact me, knowing that I was in Thailand- the same country that he was currently in- this book helped me realize I could press pause, or rather STOP.
Being able to accept and let go, and then to be kind to myself when those feelings crept back up was important. The pain, the rationalizing, the hope, the anger. It all could just flow through, not begin the loop that obsessive thinking can create. Having someone point out that you are not your thoughts, that you are the Seer, the one who can observe your thoughts created an effect in my mind that allowed me to pull out. You can watch your thoughts, you can recognize what you are habitually thinking of and redirect or move beyond those thoughts. To be able to have an influence, albeit a book, direct you to zoom out, not in, was helpful. I feel like family and friends will sit by you for a few days after a breakup and help you pull all the wings off, or dissect what went wrong. Go down those dark alleys of “what ifs” or “he probably” or “he betters.” But I’m telling you, this zoom out method was the true salve.
I had a teacher back in middle school who attempted to broach the topic of “meta-cognition” with my class, and I would say about 97% of people lost interest immediately. She tapered off after a brief explanation- recognizing that no one was listening and to this day I don’t know how she came to be on the subject. I don’t even remember the teacher’s name, but that concept has always stuck with me and I would tell her if I could that the idea was not lost on everyone. I’m not saying this book ended all retelling or reminiscing. But it did help me evolve and move past, rather than sink deep into this pit that accompanies the aftermath of a breakup.
If you get the chance to travel alone after a breakup, take it. I think it was important to overwhelm the senses and be distracted. Not distracted in the sense that you’re not dealing with reality, but in a way to remind yourself that the whole world is waiting on you to make a move. It doesn’t always have to be moving you.