If you love something, set it free. If it doesn't come back, it was never meant to be.“If you love  something, set it free. If it doesn’t come back then it was never meant to be.”

The saying goes something like that. Right?

And that’s exactly what I did with Wildflower.

And now it’s time to set myself free.

A few night ago Wildflower took my 14-year-old to the movies and told her having a close relationship with her was no longer “appropriate”. She’s known my daughter since my daughter was 6-years-old. They were always close. And when we dated, Wildflower was like a mother to my child and promised to always be like a mom to her. To always be there. She continued to tell my daughter that months after we broke-up. Nobody told her to say those things. In fact, I warned her not to make promises like that – forever is a long time and none of us can know what the future could bring. Yet, Wildflower kept making the promises.

My daughter, who was abandoned for a time by her real mom, trusted Wildflower. Even when I warned her, she told me Wildflower wouldn’t lie.

Wildflower broke her heart. Worse, she broke her trust. And now my daughter has had her heart and her trust broken by 2 women – the 2 most important women in her life.

The next evening I happened to bump into Wildflower at the grocery store. We hadn’t seen each other in 6 months.

We made small talk, Wildflower inching away the entire time. And at the end of the brief conversation I asked if I could see her child sometime soon. After all, I’ve known her kid since the child was 3-years-old. We were close. And Wildflower and I always said we’d never keep our kids from each other. Never. Ever.

But when I asked to see her son, her face turned hard and she said: “That wouldn’t be appropriate.” And then she stormed away.

It’s not okay to lie. It’s not okay to break vulnerable kids’ hearts – mine or her own. It’s not okay.

But now I have the answers I’ve been seeking.

Clearly she wants nothing to do with me. And I must respect that.

I do give her a pass for breaking promises and for breaking hearts. Because she’s been through a lot and continues to fight the good fight every single day. I can’t imagine how hard it is and has been for her. And I hate that she was in a horrible accident. I hate that she had such a rough childhood. And I hate where we are and what’s happened. But at the end of the day, I can’t do anything about it.

Except… set myself free. And take care of myself and my kids. Because though I don’t blame Wildflower for the pain she’s caused, I do know none of us deserve it. We deserve better. Much better.

My children deserve goodness and beauty and truth and kindness. They also deserve to have people in their lives who they can trust. They deserve love and hope and faith. And so do I.

I don’t know what the future will bring. And a part of me will forever be looking for Wildflower and waiting for her. A part of me always has been. But I do know that I can’t keep waiting.

It’s time to set Wildflower completely free. If she comes back, then maybe it was meant to be. If not, then it definitely wasn’t. I have to trust in that.

And I have to set myself free too. Completely. So I can move on to find goodness and love and beauty. I need to set myself free so I can heal my broken heart and begin to move toward a brighter future.

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