Suadade: The feeling of longing for someone.

Dear Woo Woo Girl:
I can’t stop thinking about my ex. It has been almost a year and I think about her every day. I am busy with work, friends, and family yet every waking thought is about her. Driving the car, waiting in line for my coffee, or at a red light-visions of her fill my head. During yoga or daily meditation, memories of her cram my thoughts. I start off my day looking at her photo on my phone and fall asleep remembering intimate moments. What do I do? Signed: Obsessed.

Dear Obsessed:

Love. Partnership. It is such a beautiful thing until it ends.    Then heartbreak and the tragedy of love ensues; which are the vignettes and scripts movies are made from.  
Attachment is so beautiful it can hurt.
With every fiber of your being you try to hold on, and it gets you know where. Your heart aches when it ends and the pain goes on and on and on and on and on. You can’t help but search out your lost love on social media, look at old photos, and every now and then reach out and call. You try and keep busy, but every waking moment holds a fleeting thought of her.
What can you do to quiet the longing?
Many things, but first know that break up is natural. Even if she was the one- the love that was supposed to stay forever- and her leaving was so unfair than you can taste the bitterness – everything ends. Feeling sad and heartbroken is a must, and if you need a guideline for a healthy mourning period, similar to a death – allow a month for every year you have been together. If you find yourself locked in mourning even longer or to the degree that you are so devastated life feels dark, and tastes sour, know that you have crossed the threshold to obsessive longing.
I know a little about obsessive longing.
It is a friend of mine. I embrace and hold on too long. Even when I know I should pry my fingers from their hand and walk away- when the relationship is eating away at my soul- I hang in there when they have long gone. Instead, I replay could of; should of; would of; over and over, along with the sex, the good times.  
The bad times never get replayed.
They have dissipated into the air where false beliefs live. It’s a smudged picture. No matter how the ending happened, or what brought me there, I try to erase it. Rationally, I may have known there was a time and a season, and things needed to end, but my heart never goes there. Mooning is what I do best, and it feeds my internal beast that lives inside claiming to be a victim.

In a way that is odd and beautiful, obsessing about a past love keeps the love alive for you and me because there is nothing else to fill it with. It holds drama, and I am a drama queen. You are a drama King. Keeping love alive is the essence to obsessive longing. Your heart yearns attention and is lost without it. An imaginary one fulfills the yearning which is the obsessiveness because we don’t know what else to do.

But it is avoidance, my love. It’s a way not to acknowledge a yearning for intimacy, and safety. It deceived us into believing that we are and were victims. Fragile and incomplete, with a lack of emotional boundaries that means we don’t have to give, forgive, or stop loving someone who is not devoted to us.

Know you must feel your heart and soul break, and allow those tears to drown you until you stop shedding them. This will teach you to feel your despair rather than to think it. It will teach you the depths of the intimacy your heart was craving. You wanted it desperately and couldn’t ask for it. Listen to it carefully. An unresolved heartbreak resolves itself through feeling not through thinking.
Feel the sadness, the guilt, the anger, the shame, the longing.
Sitting with it which is different from meditating on it. Just be and allow it to come, and fall to pieces. Your heart will tell you when you have had enough. Afterwards journal it. Heart release then thought release, then physical release. Breathe in the trees. Whether it is rain, wind, sleet, snow; breathe what nature is giving you. Even better take a trip. Enjoy the sunshine on your face and be grateful. It sounds trite, but it is profound. Those are internal steps.

External, practical- how to mend a broken heart steps are:
1. Block your ex on social media. If you are still talking, stop- until you are emotionally strong enough to see her with a new partner.
2. Let her reach out to you. You will gain some semblance of control. If she doesn’t reach out to you; if she never wants to hear from you again, silently thank her. She is teaching you to move on.
3. Wear an elastic on your wrist. Every time you think of her snap it. It will remind you of what not to do. 4. 4. Date. Speed date, Blind date, Double date, Casual date; then date some more. Find the humor in each and every one. Don’t look for love. Look for a friend.
5. Keep busy with friends, and most importantly deepen a spiritual practice that addresses your heart.

This season might take you aback. You will have made it through Christmas and the doldrums of January without the longing. Well maybe just Saturdays. It is possible to let go. It really is.
And the beautiful things you had to learn? That you are in need of strong love.
Something that was held from you. It IS possible to love again. Many times. No matter what age you are, love is waiting for you. Know there is true love and love in so many shapes and sizes. There is physical love- the craving for physical touch, lust, needy love, escapist love that feels like a good movie, familiar love like your worn sock, and the casual kind. So many varieties! But the truest, long lasting, reliable love of all is self- love.