thank you Foreigner, so do I…
Really, I am asking you…what is love? Is it the thing we see in the movies between a man and a woman? Is it the way it is in the countless books we have read? Surely it’s not the childhood fairly tales where Prince Charming finally shows up with the shoe or kisses us out of a deep sleep. And by the way, if I have to wear a glass shoe, then just no..
If it’s not that then what is it? I don’t know the answer, hence the reason for my question. So if you came here looking for answers you came to the wrong place. I thought I was in love several times in my life. But was I? From everything I have read and heard about how it is supposed to be and feel, maybe I never really was…
There are many different kinds of love..at least I think so anyway. Love of our parents and grandparents, love of our children and grandchildren, love of other family members and our friends who we love like family, even the love of our dear sweet pets. But what is the love between a man and a woman supposed to be like and is it meant to last forever? Can it?
I looked up the word “love” on Dictionary.com and here are a few of the definitions it had listed:
- a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person.
- a feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection as for a parent, child or friend.
- sexual passion or desire.
- an object or thing so liked.
- a score as in tennis of zero or nothing.
Ok, now we are getting somewhere. Thank you so much Dictionary.com! I feel a little better now…maybe I “have” loved. I certainly have had a “profoundly tender, passionate affection” for a man a time or two….maybe more. I definitely have had and still have “a deep affection” for my parents, children and friends. I won’t bore you with all the “sexual passion or desire” encounters I have had. My “thing so liked”…. I love to write. And as for the “zero” thing, yeah, had that a time or two as well. Alright!!!
Even after reading the definitions of “love“…. and admitting to have felt each of them at least once or twice, my question still remains. What is love? Does the very fact that I ask this question mean I haven’t had true love or the everlasting love we hear can exist? The kind of love that endures many years as in a long marriage…when one person dies the other isn’t far behind… the love that lasts forever. But does it? When I got married I believed it did. I believed our love would. But it didn’t. He didn’t love me enough to be faithful and I didn’t love him enough to overlook it. I loved him for many years after our divorce. Or maybe I just loved the thought of him and what could have been. He was my first love..maybe that is why I still think of him from time to time and wonder.
I had a dream last night about another one of my “loves”, it is what made me think about all of this in the first place. I woke up wondering why I had dreamt about him when I hadn’t seen or heard from him in 25 years. And then I wondered, did I love him… Was I in love with this guy 25 years ago or was it something else? I felt like I was at the time but when something doesn’t last we are very quick to think it can’t be real. So does the fact our relationship didn’t lead to marriage or last more than a few years make it any less of one than the couples that stay together forever?
“Love is all you need” ~ John Lennon
Here is what I think real love is… It means you can’t do anything wrong, the person that loves you will love you and you will work out any and all your problems. This doesn’t mean you can abuse the love or the person. That isn’t what love is. The reason you can work out your problems is that you have an underlying basis of trust and respect. If you have that you can surmount any problems that come up. But if that trust is ever broken, it is very hard to repair it. If not impossible. And it is very hard to open yourself up fully to another after going through that in a relationship.
Good times are wonderful..but bad times do happen. Only if you have that solid underlying trust, respect and true love will your relationship survive. We can’t change people or force them to be something they aren’t. They either have these traits or they don’t. This is true in any relationship, not just the one between a man and a woman. If you have a friend or family member who you can’t trust completely or they try to change you and don’t respect the person you are.. then it is time to move away from that relationship. We must be true to ourselves. We have to first love ourself enough to step away to be able to become the person we want and need to be. The person we truly are. I have made the mistake of sacrificing who I was a few times to keep the relationship. It doesn’t work and the relationship still ends. I will never do it again.
So back to the question I asked, “what is love?” I’m going to go out on a limb here after thinking about all of this and say I think I may “have” been in “love” once or twice in my life. I think there are different levels and different kinds of love. I am not sure if what I have experienced was “real love.” One thing I don’t even have to think about and I am definitely sure of is that I have the real thing with my family and the great friends I have in my life right now… at this moment in time. While I don’t have a special man in my life, I would like to believe enough in love that maybe that could still happen one day. Ok, now I know I’m starting to sound like the fairy tale books I read as a kid..but maybe that is what I need…what we all need…something to believe in…to think maybe just maybe that guy will ride up to my door in his “white car” and whisk me away. Who knows, crazier things have happened…
Do you believe in real love? The kind that lasts forever, that kind of love…
“Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead. The consciousness of loving and being loved brings a warmth and a richness to life that nothing else can bring.” ― Oscar Wilde.