I remember the first time I read it, it made so much sense to me.
I thought I fully comprehended it.
But when have I ever not thought that?
It seemed like a simple concept. If I was requiring someone else to give me the love I was lacking, then I didn’t know the true meaning of it. I was eliciting power to get what I needed. It was selfish in nature and my primary motivator was receiving it. Once I adopted a set of values and started behaving in a moral and consistent manner, I believed that the void of love was filled from myself and acting in principal. I thought that once I arrived here that love was without any need for reciprocation. I was whole.
Why would I need reciprocation if I already possessed all that I ever needed?
My closest friend and I share an amazing connection with each other. She is all of the things I am not and visa versa. She’s the yin to my yang and can make me see things from a perspective I wouldn’t normally be able to. We were having an intense conversation about the meaning of love and the feelings attached to it a few months ago.
We were trying to identify the differences in the way we perceived them.
On one hand, I thought that once someone is finally whole that the emotional nature of love becomes less intense. My position was that it becomes less intense because the fear of losing that person doesn’t seem as detrimental when you know you’ll be no less of a person when they leave as when they came. You can allow that person to leave or leave them and still love them for who they are and the experiences you shared.
Her position was the complete opposite.
She agreed that being whole or one with yourself is a vital part of being able to give and receive love honestly; but she disagreed with love being less intense and thought that was a personal choice. We went back and forth on it for a few hours and didn’t come to a resolute conclusion. I agreed with parts of her argument, and she agreed with parts of mine.
Either way, I didn’t change the way that I had viewed it.
Realize that I have been working with people one on one with the same issues I had for years. Feelings of less than, inferiority, low self-esteem, and no self-confidence. When you live that way for a long enough time and eventually pull through to the other side, it’s magical. It’s similar to unplugging all of the negative self-talk you’ve been plagued with for years and there is complete silence…or at least the volume is so low you can’t even make it out anymore.
Anyway, my girlfriend and I broke up recently.
The decision wasn’t a very difficult one because there was really no emotion behind it at that point. We simply weren’t compatible, and both agreed that continuing on wasn’t going to do either of us any good. The differences were unreconcilable. The few days leading up to it, I reflected back on our 8 months together and realized that perhaps I had misperceived love again. The fact was that I didn’t really prioritize her very much because we never really connected on a deep emotional level and on an intellectual level, it was even more impossible. Not because she wasn’t intelligent, quite the opposite. Debating and conversing about a variety of subjects was near impossible if both people aren’t willing to be objective; or not take it personally.
And that was the problem for her.
The part of it I had never thought of was controlling my emotions or having power over my emotions. Since I wasn’t able to connect with her on an emotional level, I looked at the relationship objectively…or logically. I had control over my emotions the entire time and therefore, couldn’t express love truly because if I loved her, then there would be no possibility for power. I was trying to make our relationship grow…that is an exertion of power. The purpose was not to love anymore, the purpose was to make a connection where there wasn’t one. The motivation behind all of my actions regarding the relationship were based in a sum of ideas striving towards power. Meaning every action, thought, or word I spoke wasn’t from a position of love, just power to push the relationship forward.
Pushing it forward to where I wanted it.
Where I wanted it to be became most important. Regardless of the amount of patience and tolerance I displayed in the relationship, it was still grounded in power. It was more important for me to have the power to push the outcome I wanted or thought it should be.
I justified it, thinking it was for the greater good.
The moral I learned from this lesson is that being whole does not impact the intensity of true love.
I think of love as two dominant forces setting aside their power to experience something greater.
Each acknowledging that the possibility of suffering is at the mercy of the other, accepting it is outside of their control, and experiencing something together that would be impossible on their own.