I thought I would finally bring up something that has never really been present here on the blog. It’s something that I find quite personal, yet it’s so universal that it’s almost silly not to highlight such a subject.
Love has fortunately enough been a big part of my life. Partly coming from family and friends, which to me is the most valuable and irreplaceable thing in life. But I’ve also had the pleasure of being infatuated, being in love, and sharing the experience of one-ness with another person, and that’s what I will focus on in this post.
How to not write about love in a cliche way seems to be quite the mission, so please be open minded about this. My sincerest apologies if this only comes out as a lovey-dovey bunch of cheesy tumblr-quotes.
Feeling love and being loved in return, is something that I really don’t take for granted. I’ve met some of the most incredible, kind and loving beings during my lifetime, and my time with each one of those beings can and will never be replaced.
Call me unrealistic, but to claim that the type of love you see in movies doesn’t exist, only points to a narrow mind or a lack of experience.This whole subject is very hard to discuss since everyone has their very own perception on what love is.
But what I can tell you, is that from my point of view it actually resembles a lot what you would see in movies or read in books. My experience of love has been passionate, harmonious, deep, superficial, light, fun, complicated, brilliant, horrible, heartbreaking, fulfilling, and probably a hundred other things.
I’ve had countless infatuations here and there, been fully committed to another person , been given love from another without giving it back and similarly been giving love to another without getting it back.
I’ve been in love with more than one person at the same time, fallen in love with a friend, experienced love through long distance, had a few longer relationships and some shorter ones as well.
I’ve tried being in an open relationship, been in love only with the thought of someone, or in a memory of someone. The list goes on, and I’ve only lived for about a fourth of a lifetime so far. I can’t even imagine what’s ahead of me. The bottom line is, there’s just nothing that I love as much as being in love.
Something that I’ve thought a lot about is that many people seem to have quite a narrow idea of what love should be like. But to me, it’s such an incredibly versatile and ever-changing phenomenon, and whatever shape or size it may come in, it’s worth experiencing.
The thing is, there might not be just one great love, there might be many, big and small. Maybe someone doesn’t necessarily fit you perfectly, but that shouldn’t keep you from sharing something great with that person and appreciating it for what it is. Even the smallest infatuations or flings of mine have been special to me. They have all contributed to my life in one way or another, with excitement, laughter, wisdom, or just comfort.
There’s a reason why Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen is my favorite story of all time (sorry, not sorry). It shows so many aspects of love, how many different shades it can have and how the most epic love can show up in places you would never have expected.
There’s something new to learn from every experience, even from the really bad ones. And there will most definitely be bad experiences as well as good. You might loose someone, you might get hurt, or any of these things that we’re all terribly afraid of. It takes a ridiculous amount of bravery to keep going, to not lock your heart in a box after every time it doesn’t last forever. To me however, it’s always worth it.
Being infatuated has often made me do quite silly things. It’s as if some people have the gift of completely putting me in trance, so that I can’t pay attention to anything else than them. Similarly to a magic spell.
My hearing and vision becomes out of focus and my judgement is slightly clouded, so that I find it harder to part right from wrong.
This has put me in many awkward and tricky positions I can tell you. Like when I was younger and I had a major crush on my friend’s brother, and while at their house I payed all of my attention to him instead of spending time with her. Or when I was completely mesmerised by someone who was already in a relationship, and I still couldn’t help but to be with him. Or when I fell head over heals for a person who I had only known for 24 hours, wanted to drop everything and move to Africa with him, got completely heartbroken and didn’t get over it for at least a year.
Thinking about it afterwards, it’s strange to know how little control I actually have over myself in those types of situations.
My mind is often occupied by thoughts about love. Where will I find it, who will I share it with next, will it ever feel true? It’s really hard for me to tell if the feelings I have are true or not. Not that I even know what ‘true’ means in this context, and maybe that’s my problem. Maybe I’m waiting for something that will never come.
There are many reasons why love ends, and even if the actual feeling of love doesn’t end, being in a relationship often becomes more complicated than that. It’s when the idea of love doesn’t measure up with reality that disappointment occurs.
In my case, I never really stop loving, but the reason it still doesn’t work out is usually because of the relationship itself. I find it incredibly hard to commit to something fully. Many times I’ve thought about the fact that I have some sort of pattern, of always falling in love, being over the moon, suddenly feeling very trapped and lost, and then ending it.
Nowadays there’s a whole market for love and many of us (including myself) treat it as if though it was a product, something you can look for, find, use for your own benefit, and then toss when something better turns up around the corner. There is such a big focus on individualism in our society today, which makes it harder and harder for us to compromise with another and we have less and less time to prioritise one another.
We value ourselves and our own independent lives so much to the point where being alone makes the most sense to us. The emptiness that then occurs, desperately needs to be filled with something.
Maybe that’s one of the reason why we turn to things like Tinder, desperate scrolling through images of ‘potential ones’ in the hope of filling that empty hole, of finding that someone.
The tricky part doesn’t seem to be to find someone though, but to want to keep the one you have found, in a world where we’re constantly told the importance of never settling for less than the very best, of always moving and never standing still.
On the other hand, one of the main things that I also want to pinpoint in this post, is the very value of independence. Staying true to yourself in a relationship and not giving up your own life and freedom, can be much harder than one would think.
I’ve lost myself in love many times before, and it’s a pattern that I’m quite determined to break. Some previous relationships have changed me to the point where I’m not really myself anymore, where my friends hardly recognise me, where I’m living someone else’s life and giving up way too much of myself for the other person. This is not something that I’m aware of at first, but it has always become clear with time, when the haze of new love slowly starts to fade away.
I believe that there’s a fine balance between the importance of not completely loosing yourself in ‘us’, and still being brave enough to need that other person in that infinite way.
What I also want to highlight with this is that you are not nothing if you decide that you don’t want to commit to someone, or if you perhaps don’t have the opportunity to be in a relationship.
Being by yourself can be such a great learning experience and gives you a great freedom to try out different things outside of ‘the very square box of monogamy’.
I’ve discovered so many things about myself while being without a partner, and even though it can make me feel lonely or apathetic from time to time, I believe it has made me so much stronger as a person.
This way it has been possible for me to connect with my inner self on a whole other level. Embrace it, see it as a way to explore things about yourself, and make the most of your own time. I am mine, before I am anyone else’s.
And what about the people you’ve already had something special with? Do you actually stop loving them or is it just mere repression of feelings because the situation didn’t work out?
Most of my relationships have ended because of my own fears, or the timing has just been wrong. Not because I have stopped loving them.
Then how will I ever let go? I can sometimes feel as though I still deeply love someone that I haven’t seen for years.
In the end I guess most people change which means that I am merely in love with a memory. But the romantic in me won’t let go of the idea that my soulmate was there all along. It’s much easier to cling to the past than to stay hopeful for what might come in the future.
I still love and am in love with the memory of everyone I’ve shared something great with. Just like a movie you would watch over and over, I play those memories in my head and still feel that I love that particular person, just for being a part of my life and loving me back once upon a time.
I recently read an article about marriage and love, where I found this part particularly spot on: “A good partnership is not so much one between two healthy people (there aren’t many of these on the planet), it’s one between two demented people who have had the skill or luck to find a non-threatening conscious accommodation between their relative insanities.”
Of course I am, as most people, secretly going around waiting for one person who fits me like a hand in a glove. You might find it contradictory (which it probably is) that I believe in love, but that I’m also struggling so much to be properly committed to someone.
The thing is, I know that one day there will be someone who makes me feel like there is no one else, someone I just can’t be without. Someone who I don’t have to give up myself for. And that’s probably what I would call a soulmate.
I hope at least some of you can relate to what I’ve brought up in this post. As I said before, there are so many different perspectives on the subject and I’m still trying to work out my own views and feelings myself.
But what I do know is this. I have loved, I have been in love, I have fallen out of love, and probably everything in between. And I won’t stop doing this as long as I’m living, since I believe it’s the very reason that I stay alive.