Ysanet Batista


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How I Learned To Embrace My Blackness as a Dominican Woman

Article public on HipLatina.com

Ni A Mi Peor Enemigo (Not Even to My Worst Enemy)

Heartbreak… Eta' vaina no se lo deseo a nadie, ni a mi peor enemigo (this shit I don't wish it upon anyone, not even my worst enemy).
Once upon a time, I was actually curious about how it’d feel. I am a big fan of corny novelas and romance movies so I would imagine it would be like in one those scenes. Like the masochist I am, I went looking for it. Y como dicen por ahí, el que busca encuentra. Y pues, now I have it. Heartbreak. This shit sucks, yo. No me gusta. I have been told it is an experience (read: pain) that we must all go through. Pero, que va… where can I return it?

This pain is not like the other pains. This one likes to creep up slowly and boom 💥 I am running to the nearest place where I can be alone para dar una buena llora (to go get a good cry in). It is not like other pains, the ones that I know will end in a couple of hours or days. I know that once I pop a pill, or drink a remedio I am cured. Pero no… eta vaina vino, y aquí se ha quedado (this shit arrived and it has overstayed). It’ll have me creeping into my amargue playlist full of old school Shakira, Sin Bandera, Reik, David Bisbal, Enrique Iglesias, Cristian Castro, you name it.

I like to ask people how long does it last. People give me different answers. I am going on two years now, it is about to be the same age as the relationship. Ha! I have inquired advice on healing. My mother tells me "un clavo saca a otro clavo." My brujas tell me "do XYZ ritual." My church-going friends tell me "focus on loving the Lord, and he'll heal your heart and bring you someone new." The internet tells me "10 Ways to Get Over a Heartbreak" and “Losing Your Soulmate is the Best Thing That Can Happen to You.”

I have tried them all. And they work! I have gone a couple of months heartbreak free. I have even REALLY liked other people. Then, the heartbreak returns. Coñaso. I was doing good! Often it is awakened by something or someone I see that'll transport me back to a memory of joy. O, porque esa es otra cosa, heartbreak likes to only remember the great times. It tells me "let us now remember the relationship like a romance movie" and "you two maybe have a chance, insist upon it." 

But I am clear, these are fabrications of my mind. There is nothing there. Still, for a brief moment I allow myself to watch this relationship remake, directed and produced by my heartbreak, then shut it down.

I know I am young and that this person is not the last fish in the ocean. I understand I will experience another --- maybe multiple great loves. Yet, despite being in multiple other relationships, this particular one shook me and taught me the complexities of love and having a broken heart. The first time I experience the full spectrum of my heart. On one side, a joy I want everyone around me to feel and on the other side, a pain I wish no one has to endure. Then the in between: logic. Logic whispers “get your shit together” and brings me the awareness that this too shall pass.

Someday you're gonna look back on this moment of your life as such a sweet time of grieving. You'll see that you were in mourning and your heart was broken, but your life was changing...
Elizabeth Gilbert


This essay is part of the the #52Essays2017 writing challenge I am participating in (along with 600+ people) created by the writer  Vanessa Mártir as well as my #Breakthrough26 challenge where I do shit that scares me. Woosah!

Ysanet Batista