I hate birthdays. I have never really been a fan of them – not even when I was younger. I was excited for my 21st birthday, and that was probably about it. Oh, and my 18th birthday. I had the best 18th birthday, but that’s a story for another time.

So another decade has come and gone. I know in the grand scheme of things, 30 really isn’t that big of a deal. Yet I can’t help but feel as though I have been sleepwalking through most of my life. Last month I finally worked up the nerve to tell someone, after six years of knowing one another and three of not seeing one another, that I loved him when we were together. I was too afraid to tell him at the time. I wasn’t a good person, and the best solution that I could see at the time was to let him go. It was the way I could do the least damage – let him go and leave. He was the best guy…truly.

I don’t think anyone has ever loved me as much as he did. And he accepted me for exactly who I was – even the mess I was at the time. A hot, young mess – making terrible decisions every chance that I got. I can remember sitting on his back steps while he grilled chicken and I picked at the concrete, he turned to me and said that he saw more good in me than I could see in myself.

When I finally cried on his shoulder and told him how much he had meant to me all this time, he hugged me and told me all he has ever wanted for me was to be happy. That I could never just let myself be happy. He is right. I am finding that out now – I just don’t know how to allow myself to be happy.

What is missing? What am I missing? What will make me happy? And is anyone ever truly happy?