Thank you. Thank you for giving 17 year old Shannon a burst of confidence she so badly needed. I may not have spoken up too often back then but it was you who paved the way for me to try. Before we met, I thought I was broken beyond repair. Of course, I was a dramatic teenager with only bad experiences when it came to matters of the heart, but it was you who first made me believe that I could get over my insecurities and actually be a part of something special.
Thank you. Thank you for giving me butterflies. Before we met, I didn’t know how exciting it could be to stay in on a Friday night and cozy up to watch a movie. Every time I got a sweet text message, I would smile. Every time you poked fun at the way I dressed or how many bad TV shows I watched, I laughed.
Thank you. Thank you for showing me that life goes on and when it does, your only option is to go on with it. No, I didn’t want you to go away to college and completely forget about me. As the mascara ran down my cheeks I imagine what my heart would’ve looked like at that exact moment. I didn’t want to go back to school and answer questions about you. I didn’t want to tell everyone we were “still going to be friends” because I knew we weren’t. I didn’t want you to take my name off of your Facebook profile. But I let you – I let you do it all. I got on with my life.
As time went on, I thought of you less and less often. But I would be lying if I said you never crossed my mind. It’s nice to hear from you time and time again and I genuinely hope you’re in a world where the sun always shines and your dreams are always obtainable.
But that doesn’t mean I’m going to forget about all the bad stuff. Sure, I could lay them all out, telling the entire Internet about every single time I came home crying and moment I questioned myself as a reflection of your actions. I won’t do that though. I only want to say thanks.
Thank you for making me fall in love. Not with you, but with the things you taught me. I still love watching soccer. I still love all of those songs. A lot of people say that a relationship followed by a breakup gives you an identity then takes it away. I say bullshit. You gave me an identity, took it away, but then gave me another identity. Yes, in this identity I may not get butterflies and I may not have someone to cozy up to, but this identity is smart and this identity is bold.
This identity knows what she wants and what she doesn’t want. This identity is a bad-ass chick who doesn’t apologize for the way she dresses or the TV shows she watches. And the best part? This identity is constantly changing, allowing all who meet me to touch my heart. This identity isn’t complete yet. This identity is still looking for her own identity.