Now is the Time to Say Goodbye to Your Ex’s Ghost

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By the time you realize what you lost I will be found.

You’ve become a virus. Memories and habits return against my will and before I know it, I’m back where I used to be with you—lost, desperate, illogically at odds with what might be.

I thought we’d have it all together, but it’s not how life turned out. I’ve lived with your ghost for a while. Some days are better than others but most times I find myself trying to remember how you smelled, the way you touched me, things you whispered in my ear the last night we were together when everything was perfect.

It wasn’t a lie, but seasons change and so do feelings

There came a time I had to let it go but life enjoys testing me every so often. I’ll never know when I’m truly over you until they happen—sometimes I pass but other times the tests pull me into a puddle of remorse. They’re constant reminders that I’m still hurting.

I want desperately to hold you again, for you to hold me, to kiss you and for you to kiss me back. I tell myself it’s possible, that one day you’ll return to me. But this has been the very thing that’s held me down.

I’m learning more about myself now than I ever did while we were together. Looking back, I question your motives—red flags were apparent. But love didn’t exactly create a barrier between us; on the contrary, it brought us so closer that all the barriers disappeared. It was me, you, and the world; we controlled it all.

I’ve been down this road before—refusing to let you go until it becomes toxic. While I feel foolish for letting myself come back, letting you go is the only option I have for me to find some kind of future. I’m not sure how you’re dealing with it all. You probably aren’t nearly as affected by it as I am, but that’s okay. My hope is by the time you realize what you lost I will be found.

Letting you go is the only option

In order to welcome what’s to be I have to mourn what was. Every tear I’ve shed was another brick on a pathway to peace—the foundation is set and all I need to do is make a choice: to back peddle or sprint ahead.

The unknown is scary for everyone. There are only questions and insecurity but when you face it knowing who you are regardless of self-made fears, everything becomes insignificant. And who I am no longer includes you.

Bravery is stemmed from taking chances in spite of whatever fear you might have. I’ve been scared of changing because I’ve built my life and future around you. The image of us together used to be so clear but things happen, which distort it until it’s no longer visible. Instead of trying to remember what it looked like I will build a new image—one that can never distort because it’s framed around myself.

The most important thing anyone who’s rebuilding their life can do is to focus on the type of person you want to be.

It has nothing to do with a man, a job or anything else. It involves you and only you, therefor it will never change until you decide it does.

Saying goodbye must require another direction to move towards. It needs movement, progress, and that progress ought to be with you—not another man. Use this time to find your voice and you will then find strength; perhaps strength you never knew you had.

David Artavia


David is an award-winning journalist and editor at The Advocate, Plus, and Chill magazines. His work also appears at and OutTraveler. He lives in Los Angeles where he lives vicariously through his friends.

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