It’s 2 am and you miss them. You’re out to dinner with your friends and you miss them. You get a call and you’re hoping it was them. You sit at home in your lonely, wishing you were with them. You forget what it’s like to smile without them. You’ve forgotten what it’s like to be happy on your own. Things get tough and you wish it was their hand there to hold yours and tell you everything is going to be alright. But you’ve got yourself, and to be honest, that’s all you’re ever going to need.

The truth is, you bring something to the table. You need to remember that. It is so easy to think of the amazing things they did for you. So easy to miss the good and forget about the bad. But it’s important that when you look back on your relationship or friendship, you analyze yourself – in a good way. You remind yourself about all the times you went over to their house to cheer them up because they were upset. All the times you drove lunches to their work when they forgot theirs. All the times you held them close and kissed their forehead. The times you made them feel safe and warm. The times you forgave them for their mistakes. The times you rooted for them to reach their potential. They may have been good to you, but you were also good to them.

So, instead of dwelling on all the times you could have done, remember what you did. Instead of seeing them as the best you ever had, remind yourself why you’re the best they’ve ever had. Value yourself and give yourself credit. You loved them for the things they did for you, and the way you made them feel. Don’t you think they loved you for the same?

Don’t be so hard on yourself. You are worthy of love. Learn to criticize yourself for the things you should improve but love yourself enough to know that you are worthy of love either way. I know I can get jealous easily, it’s something I am learning to actively work on. Just because I have moments of jealousy still, doesn’t mean I don’t deserve love. It doesn’t mean I’m not a good girlfriend. I’m doing my best.

You heal better when you can look at something as a learning experience, to grow for the future. Look at what didn’t work, but also what did. Find a balance between being your own critic and your own promoter. Instead of looking at not getting a job as a failure, look at it as ways to improve for your next interview. Instead of being comfortable in your misery, use it to teach you. Use it to motivate you to dig deep within yourself and find what makes you special. Let your past be a guide to a better love. A better life. A better you.

We all are learning and growing, and sometimes it takes losing people for us to realize this change and that’s okay. We are stronger because of it.

What am I getting at?

Allow yourself to heal, to grow, and remember, Ijeoma Umebinyuo’s three routes to healing, “1. You must let pain visit. 2. You must allow it to teach you. 3. You must not allow it to overstay.”

Heal, learn, grow, love.

By Kendall O’Donnell for ThoughtCatalog