What is a “Free Spirit”?

I think it’s sad that when you try to explain to someone that you are a “free spirit”, they automatically think “Okay, so you’re a hippie slut.” For example, one of the definitions on Urban Dictionary for free spirit is actually “Slutty; in a 70s way.”
Can someone please explain to me what the hell that even means?

To be a free spirit is not to be a slut. I cannot stress this enough.
I was talking to one of my ex-boyfriends one day, just trying to explain my mindset to him, and I finally got frustrated and just said “I don’t know. I’m young and I’m dumb sometimes. I’m just a free spirit.” His automatic response was to say that I am a whore, which is completely untrue.
So, what exactly is a “free spirit” if it’s not an easy hippie? A free spirit is someone who is able to think for themselves. A free spirit is someone who doesn’t automatically do things the way that society thinks that they should be done. Basically, a free spirit truly is a nonconformist.

My mind works so much different than most people that I know. I’m the type of person who loves relentlessly, and does everything that she can to be self aware in every aspect. I live my life for myself, yet not in a selfish way at all. I live my life trying to grow as a person and understand those around me. I try very hard to be empathetic and understand people and their emotions, the way that they handle situations.
Recently, I’ve went through the hardest breakup I’ve ever been through. In the beginning stages of moving on, I genuinely believed that there was no hope whatsoever. I believed that I was going to die if I didn’t have him back. One day, though, I decided that it was time to completely change my mindset, and it’s the best thing that I’ve ever done. Instead of searching for the negative day in and day out, I decided to really change my perspective and look at the positive things that are coming from moving on with my life without a man in my life.
This is when I truly started to see beauty in everything around me. I started to see the good things in life, the things that I could hold into to shape me into a beautiful soul. Instead of looking at our breakup in the “How will I survive without him” way, I changed my thinking to “If we wouldn’t have broken up, I never would have done what I needed to do in order to fight off my demons.” The entire situation with my ex made me realize that I wasn’t as happy as I thought I was within our relationship. I thought that he was the love of my life, but I realized that I’m not ready to meet the love of my life yet.

I’ve learned that it’s okay to be young and dumb. It’s okay to make bad decisions occasionally. It’s what helps you grow into yourself. It’s what helps you decide the type of person that you’re going to be.
I’m living my life freely. I’m not planning anything out anymore. I’m getting to know new people and getting to know myself for who I truly am and what my heart truly wants. I’m not listening to the people around me who are saying: “You will never be successful unless you go to school. You don’t have the money to move away and make it on your own. You will never be able to [insert whatever it is here] unless you go to college first.” blah. blah. blah.
None of those things are true. I just don’t live my life as a robot. I live my life for myself. I do what makes me happy in the moment, and honestly, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. I promise you that if you live your life with spontaneity and do what makes you happy and not worry about anything or anyone has to say except you, then you will experience life for everything that it is.
I’m so much more appreciative of everything and everyone around me. I am learning to be empathetic. I’m learning to see beauty in the darkness. I’m learning that being an optimist truly changes your mood. The way that you think truly matters when you are searching for the right road to take. I’m learning to be free, I’m learning to be me.

Letting Go of Control

I was sitting at my piano the other day trying to think of a song that I could play and sing to take my mind off of some things that were happening. Most of the time, my go-to artist for situations like this is Paramore, simply because their music is simple, yet powerful. I chose to sit down with the chords to a song off of their latest self-titled album called “Last Hope”.

When I first started to sing the song, I realized instantly that my heart was filling up with emotion. I had heard this song multiple times since the album has been released, and honestly, it’s one of my favorite tracks on the whole album, but it didn’t dawn on me how accurate the lyrics were to my life until the moment that they came out of my mouth.

I don’t even know myself at all
I thought I would be happy by now
But the more I try to push it
I realize – Gotta let go of control

Gotta let it happen
So let it happen

This is the first verse in the song, and after singing it, my heart immediately filled up with sadness and self revelation. After being engaged for the previous 1 1/2 years, I really didn’t think for a single second that I could be where I am right now. I never thought that we would be apart. Honestly, I thought that we would be married by now. But we aren’t.
Within the past month or so, I’ve been doing everything that I could to “win him back”, because I truly believed that it was our destiny that we end up together. However, because of my heartbreak, because of my constant rejection from the one person who I love the most, I have also made some decisions that I shouldn’t have made by seeking out the attention of other men. This reaction is completely normal for a lot people, though, so I’m not going to sit here and beat myself up over the mistakes that I’ve made, because there is no point in that. What I need to realize, though, is that the attention of another man isn’t going to take away the pain I feel because of the absence of another man. I’ve been doing a lot better with this realization as of recently, and I’m trying really hard to do what I need to do to.
Another realization that I had, is simply that “letting go” is what absolutely has to happen in this situation. Not just with me, either, but with my ex-fiance. At this point in time, there is no reason for us to speak to each other. He feels so much resentment and hatred towards me because of all of the problems that I have caused in his life, and rightly so. The more we continue to communicate, and the more that I try to push him to forgive me and take me back so we can fix all of our problems, the worse both of us feel. So, what’s the point in even talking to each other at this point in time? We obviously both still care so much that we don’t want to fully let go, and we are both completely in denial that that is, in fact, exactly what needs to happen.

It’s just a spark,
But it’s enough to keep me going.
And when it’s dark out, no one’s around
It keeps glowing

These powerful words are the chorus to the song “Last Hope”. Words cannot even begin to describe how much I can relate to this. Every single day, I find something new to hold onto. Sometimes it’s something very, very small. Sometimes it’s just a simple “I know I will make it through this.” Other times the spark is a little bigger than that. Either way, I find something positive to hold onto every day that helps me remember that I will not feel this hurt, rejection, and shame for the rest of my life.

Every night I try my best to dream tomorrow makes it better
But then I wake up to the cold reality
That not a thing has changed

But it will happen – Gotta let it happen

After I come home from work or a night out with my friends and settle into my house with my dogs by my side, the sadness starts to creep in. It almost never fails. Sometimes it’s a lot worse than others, but it’s always there nonetheless. So what else do you do when you’re emotionally and physically exhausted? You sit and you think to yourself “I’m just going to go to bed. I will feel better when I wake up.” That statement is bullshit. Sorry for the language, but it’s true. Going to bed and waking up the next morning never fixes anything, simply because even though it feels like you’re erasing your problems, you’re really not. When I wake up in the morning, my heart instantly starts racing again. The pressure reapplies itself to my chest before my feet even hit the ground. The thoughts of my love start pouring in, and it’s like I am starting the healing process all over again. You would think that it would lessen with time, and I’m sure that with enough time, it will. However, after a month and a half, I haven’t seen a difference in it at all. I still wake up feeling like I’m going to die. I still feel like nothing will ever go right for me, because it’s not what I deserve. That’s what I’m being told over and over again by the person that I love the most. I’m being told on almost a daily basis that I am a terrible person, that I should lose sleep over everything I have done (which I do), and that I deserve to be miserable for the rest of my life. When someone that you admire so deeply tells you these things, it’s hard to not believe them. It’s hard to be like “No, you’re wrong. I am a human being and I deserve to be happy whether it be with you or someone else.” So then that reality sets in and I start to dwell on how he’s right. He’s 100% right and I will never be happy. But no, it will happen. The sleepless nights will subside, along with the heartache and panic attacks that strike me out before my feet touch the ground in the morning. It will happen, I just have to let it.

And the salt in my wounds isn’t burning anymore than it used to
It’s not that I don’t feel the pain, it’s just I’m not afraid of hurting anymore
And the blood in these veins isn’t pumping any less than it ever has
And that’s the hope I have, the only thing I know that’s keeping me alive.

I will never forget the first time that I listened to this song. My friend McKenzie and I were driving around listening to it, and both of us immediately shed a few tears at these lyrics. Whenever Hayley Williams sings them, you can tell that she is pouring her entire heart out into them. As you all know just from previous posts, I admire when I can really and truly feel the artist’s heart through their music. However, these lyrics now hit pretty close to home, along with the rest of the song.
Throughout my ex and I’s entire relationship, we were both hurting. We were toxic. We loved each other so damn much, but it was almost like I didn’t know how to love him. I didn’t know how to make him feel like he was wanted, and that’s the most important thing that you can do for someone in a relationship. All I needed to do was make him feel loved, and I failed miserably.
Everything in my life is the exact same that it was before. I’m not deathly ill, even though some days, it definitely feels that way. My blood is still pumping through my body, and I am still living my life. Knowing that, I realize that there is no reason why I won’t make it through this. It’s sad to think that I have actually sat down and genuinely wanted to die because of this situation. I’ve sat down and thought to myself that I wouldn’t be okay, and that nothing or no one could ever even begin to compare to the love that I had for my ex. If I couldn’t have him, I didn’t want to live anymore, because life without him wasn’t a life. It was torture. Yeah, all of those things are true in this moment in time. Definitely. However, I’ve decided to put on my big girl pants and try to let go of control. I realize that things will get better. I realize that he needs time to himself to become happier and independent. I realize that he needs a lot of time in order to move past his hatred that he has for me, that he needs time to forgive me. I also realize that once that forgiveness happens, that doesn’t necessarily mean that he and I will end up getting married and living happily ever after. Things for my ex and I really could be over for the rest of our lives, and I’m slowly learning to be okay with that reality.
I’ve told him time and time again that I’m in love with him and that I will do whatever I have to in order to prove to him that he is the love of my life, and that I will win him back. He’s told me over and over again that I need to do that for myself, and who knows? Maybe one day it will happen. However, once he sees me start to move on, once he sees me with a smile on my face, it’s almost like he freaks out. He tries to tell me that because I’ve told him how much I love him and how I will prove it to him, if I start to move on in any way, that means that “he isn’t worth the wait” and “everything you said to me was bullshit. Again.” I just wish that he would understand that that is not necessarily true. I wish that he would realize that in order for me to be okay, I have to let go of the “we will be okay and end up together” mindset in order to move on with my life. If I don’t, I will spend the rest of my life waiting, hoping, and wishing while he continues on with his life and his new girlfriend. It isn’t fair to expect me to sit around and have that mindset. It isn’t fair to expect me to wait.

The fact that I’m saying any of this is huge progress. Having the realization that the best thing that I can do for not only myself, but also my ex, is to let go and live our lives separately is the biggest step that I have taken through this whole process. Having that realization doesn’t mean that I love him any less or I don’t want things to work out, it just means that I’m doing what I have to do in order to let go and let my life play out the way that it’s supposed to instead of trying to force it to play out the way that I thought it was supposed to. My destiny isn’t for me to decide. That’s the beauty of it, and fighting it does absolutely nothing at all except make your life worse. I know that I will be okay. There’s a spark inside of me that will not burn out, and I am adding wood to it every day and hoping that it ignites sometime soon. I have hope that it will. The mistakes of my past do not dictate me as a person or what I deserve in life. My life has a beautiful future, and all I need to do is hold onto that truth with every ounce of strength in my body.