When you are a child, you have this innocent belief and understanding of love. All the fairytale love stories. Prince Charming. The person of your dreams. Happily ever after. It’s a nice possibility. It’s such a wondrous thing to look forward to.

When you’re a teenager, you typically get that magical feeling of first love. That euphoric high of waiting by the phone. Passing love notes. Going to dances. The sweetness of holding their hand in the school hallways. The heart-bursting excitement of them walking you to class. It’s all so grand until that first inevitable heartbreak.

When you’re an adult, there is the hope of marriage and a family. A house with a white picket fence and a family dog. You stand up on your wedding day and look into their eyes. You both promise forever with hearts full of love.

What you never expect is forever to be “just for now.” You never expect for the vows to crumble and the love to fade. You never imagine the fights and the hateful insults. You never think of goodbye when you say “I do.”

In that heart-wrenching moment when you realize you won’t be able to work this out—that you have to let go for your own sanity—you have to realize that it’s okay. Sometimes you have to choose yourself over the vows and promises of “I do.” Sometimes it’s nobody’s fault, sometimes it is. Sometimes instead of growing together, you simply grow apart. Something that was amazing and wonderful 15 years ago may not be enough for the person you are now. You have to realize that is okay. Letting go, moving on, and divorce is okay.

Sometimes it’s the only way to really love yourself. To let go of the person you promised to love forever. And that’s okay. Sometimes you just have to choose you.

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