Because you hurt me, I’m happier than ever. To the person who made me feel like I wasn’t enough—thank you.
Thank you for always making me feel like I had to try harder. You taught me how to never give up. I needed you, or I thought I did, so I fought and fought for you even when I was well past the point where I should have given up. But I never did. So you showed me just how far I can push myself before breaking. For that, thank you again.

Thank you for fighting with me. Because you fought with me, I learned how to better pick my battles. That’s so important to know in life. Battles that aren’t fought aren’t lost; they’re just not worth the fight. Since you, I’ve become more level-headed and understanding. I’m more mature about issues, and believe it or not, sometimes I’m actually right. So thank you for showing me that not every fight is worth it.

Thank you for the good times. When it was good, it was great. But when it was bad, it was awful. It can’t be denied that we had a good time whenever we were together. The laughs, inside jokes and planning our future. It got me prepared for my life now. It helped me realize that I can share so much about my life with someone. It gave me the confidence to fully be me with my new relationship, and he accepts that. Thank you for allowing someone else to experience my life with me.

Thank you for letting me love you. Loving you was emotionally exhausting. I loved and loved and loved, hoping that maybe one day you would return it all, and you never did. But since I loved you with all I had, it proved to me that someone someday would be able to return it. I love better now, with no limitations; just freely, because I finally found someone to return it. You loved me when I was mad at you, when you needed me for something or when you were guilty. It was never just about us. Thank you for showing me what love isn’t about. Because of that, I can love my person endlessly.

Thank you for cheating on me. Whoa, never thought I would write that sentence. You hurt yourself, and of course, you hurt me, but you made me strong. The sentence always replays in my head: “I cheated on you; I don’t deserve you, but you will find someone who does.”

You were right. You do not and never did deserve me. And you were right again—I did find someone who does. Because of you, I’m not as weak. I don’t break as easily. And I stand up for myself now. Yes, you made me insecure because somebody I invested over a year of my life into threw it all away without good reason. But I’m so thankful you did. I had to learn to get up and love myself. I had to have the strength to smile through the pain. Since then, I couldn’t be happier. I learned to love myself, and in the process found someone who loves me more than that. He sees my flaws and loves me anyway. He understands me. He accepts me for who I am.

If it wasn’t for you, I would have never experienced hurt. But if it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t be where I am today. Thank you for making me. I loved the idea of who I thought you were, but I could never really love you. I planned a future in my head and tried to fit you into it, but you were too scared of commitment. All I had to realize the whole time was that God had already planned my future, and it was without you. He gave me the person my future was planned around. And strangely, it looks a lot like the one I had planned in my head … except in this one I’m smiling.

By Summer Gordon for TheOdysseyOnline