I... don't even know where to begin in my mind. You know that feeling you get when you're standing on the edge of some ridiculously huge precipice and you look down and you don't really get dizzy (so I don't know if it's the same as vertigo) but you get this awful twitch in the back of your mind that, for some reason or another, you're legs are going to jump your ass off the edge, even if your mind doesn't want to?
Well, that's how things are for me. Have been. For quite a while now.
Thankfully, it hasn't all been awful... Oh, wait, yes it has. HOWEVER, I've managed to not only:
A) actually grown in my faith, but I've also B) grow as a person more than I have ever thought possible, at the expense of my happiness and ability to function in normal society. Considering the way my parents raised me, anyone who knew my family would assume I was a good, upstanding person living a moral and positive life.
Not so. I'm not a model citizen, and I'm not the ideal standard of virtue for people. I'm pretty much the opposite of that. Normally, this is the point where I would deride myself, call myself awful things and hate myself with a burning intensity rivaling that of the sun. But I don't anymore. I accept what I am, and I've learned to deal with it in a constructive matter. So many things that I've done were completely terrible and I had absolutely no idea at the time of how destructive my behavior was, not only to myself but to others as well.
One of the biggest problems I've had was jealousy. I was insecure about myself, and found every other guy imaginable threatening. Looking back, it was the stupidest, saddest display of cowardice and insecurity that I've ever seen. As a result, it ended (with other complications) in the eventual undoing of my relationship. I accept all the blame, and I've been able to overcome it. Now I know how to feel, and how to act properly if I'm ever in another relationship (this is one of the biggest if's in the entire universe).
I don't regret being in that relationship. I feel bad for the pain I caused, both to her and girls in the past, and I can't say I enjoyed the way things had to end, but I've learned that to regret something or to wish something never was is like saying you wish you had never experienced something good. The good and the bad in life are inseparable. And the amount of good I received from those experiences is extraordinary.
I wish nothing but the best for them, with no ill will and only the request for forgiveness for the way I've acted. If any of them read this, all I have to say is: thank you, for the beauty and joy you showed me in our time together. I will treasure the memories forever, and carry you in my heart.
I'm not making any claims to achieving some kind of saintly status or anything. I'm still a pretty shitty person, and I have a long way to go before I'll ever call myself "good." But sometimes, you have to look at the distance traveled, rather than your current place in life.