If you are reading this and wondering why I would categorize love in the same group as
“other scary things”, congratulations!! You are probably one of the few courageous people who still believe in love and its meaning. Whichever type of love you might be conjuring up in your brain as you read this, I believe that, as long as it is not certain or come with a couple of years guarantee, it is scary in my books.
Lately, since my 30 something birthday and (if I can be honest) a few months or even a year before that, I have spent some time thinking about this “love” thing. Not obsessing about it but certainly having questions about it. It is a concept that has been so taken for granted by our generation that it has lost its meaning. For me as a self-confessed cynic on all things love-related, I think it is as foreign a concept as aliens.
However, because I am a lover of the pursuit of knowledge I decided to do some reading on the topic which I will share here:
From the book “Women who run with the wolves” by Clarissa Pinkola Estés
When the heart is a lonely hunter- Lessons about love
- Love does not mean a flirtation or a pursuit for simple ego-pleasure. Now! this is where most of us get it wrong. We confuse infatuation with love. We fall for that guy with a great body, but this is fleeting because it is based on something that is here today and may be gone tomorrow. Looks fade, so if your basis of love is that the person you are with is physically attractive, then what will you do when they are no longer attractive? If they gain weight or have an accident that leaves them physically deformed? Real love, then, based on this text, is based on much more than flirtation and ego-pleasure. It is “a visible bond composed of endurance, a union which prevails through bounty and austerity; through the most complicated and most simple days and nights.” (sounds really corny…but ok!)
- To love, one must not only be strong, but wise.
- There are necessary deaths and births within a love relationship. Now! this is the scariest part because most of us do not want to face letting some things die in order to give birth to new things in our lives. The author speaks of letting some personality traits die, especially if they are hindering your ability to form lasting relationships. How much of yourself are you willing to let go off in order to let another person in? For some, this might mean a huge sacrifice. The author speaks of killing the illusion of love, killing expectations and greed. A lot of us have illusions and imaginations of love which lead us to place unrealistic expectations on the people we are with. This is what brings frustration and eventually, the relationship fizzles out. Personally, I won’t even talk about myself because the list of things I would have to kill in order to open up to real “love” would take pages and pages. We claim to love people but yet we cannot change parts of ourselves that stop us from forming a real commitment with them. WE ARE NOT READY!!!
- Treating love as an accidental finding of treasure. When you meet that one person who makes you feel like you have stumbled upon some form of spiritual treasure. This is DEEP.
If the above lessons of what love is and what is should look like do not scare you, again you are one of the brave ones. Some of us keep trying to figure it out as we go, with most of us just living a lie really….yes even the married ones!
Till next time,