This is the story and journey of Love …the way I understand it, some of it through my own living and some of it through others. See if you find yourself somewhere there, all of it or none of it because you just were born great in this tricky area of life!
Love is felt deep and love is felt light. It is also felt in its lack. It is felt in absence and in presence. It is present when you are aware and when you are unaware.
For a long time I lived as if love exists only to be received from others, in the form of words, thoughts, feelings, actions, gifts, gestures. I also discovered that one way to find peace from hurt through people is looking at them through the lens of love – putting their actions and words that hurt me, in a big bellied pot of love and accept them as people who didn’t mean it or didn’t know better. Who would hurt another person knowingly?
That led to another tunnel though for a while. I couldn’t set boundaries – on either side. It took some time to learn to say no. And took time to understand that I too had grown insensitive in my actions and words. Because being sensitive in any way made me vulnerable to the hurts that I was trying hard to digest in my pot of love.
I figured everyone would have this pot, in some shape, so I will be loved too – I just have to twist and turn a bit to fit in the shape and size of their pot. So went exploring other people’s pot of love. Poured my heart in them. At times made myself small enough to fit into the mouth of their pots – once I enter I will definitely find love. Alas but all they saw was how small I was. So I learnt to dress well, get creative in my appearance. Just enough make up so it’s not too much but makes my face a little more visible. So they would let me in a bit sooner. I am such a good person …there is no way they won’t love me ones I get into their pot. The only thing I have to do is tap into the pulse of their feeling and emotion and what they were looking for from me – and just become that and say and do exactly that – as long as they are happy they will keep me in their pot. And I will feel and find love. In different forms and different relations.
Yeah one kind is never enough. The husband/boyfriend has to bring flowers and say certain things, a certain way on certain occasions. Parents have to know exactly how to encourage, motivate and protect me. In- laws should unconditionally accept me and let me be what I am every day. A friend should be available for me exactly the way I need a friend to be. For all this to become possible – I will bend, twist, turn, smile, crouch, shoulder, cook, clean, smile, impress, suppress, profess, smile, be positive, be the best, always available, smile!! Anything you say. Just tell me the kind of chutney you like, I will become that and go around the lazy susan and turn myself towards you. Let me in your pot of love please.
Until … my own big bellied pot of love cracked and burst open, crumbling to the floor. It couldn’t hold all of you anymore. I love you all …give me time, let me pick up the pieces of my pot and put them back together. I don’t know what happened but it feels impossible to live without this pot. Love is all it carried. Wonder what made it so fragile. Love is the strength that sustains all. Wonder what broke the pot. Love has no boundaries. Wonder if that broke the pot. Love is unconditional. Wonder what else the pot needed to stay together other than love. Love accepts all. Wonder why my pot didn’t accept all the people and their unintentional ways that I so lovingly put in there – so finally love can dissolve them and they become the people I want them to be for me. I wonder what went wrong.
I kept making these desperate attempts to put the pieces together so I can finally get back to the world doing exactly what I was doing before in the exact same manner. Why not? I was a good person always who made only the right choices. Someone will definitely see that and more people will definitely let me in in their pots.
I ended up crashing myself to the floor because everyone seemed to share their pots merrily and I was left with nothing, not even myself existed. For the first time I took a good look at my own existence. Oh My God! There am I! Hello …umm stranger…umm what do you need …LOVE. Yeah that’s all I was looking for rright? Yaa but I like how you said hello! Umm…love … I love myself! Ahhh! That felt sooo good. I looked into the mirror. It was scary, different, hesitant. And I repeated I love myself. I approve of myself. And repeat, and repeat. It was the strangest feeling and space to be in. But it felt powerful! So I practiced saying it …looking deep in my own eyes …over and over …hundreds times. I looked at the floor – the pot was no more. I was the pot and the pot was me. It was all me, still in pieces. Now when I tried to pick up the pieces it was so much more powerful, easier and filled with Love. So put them together piece by piece.
It was long, lonely, difficult process at times. But the more willing I was the more support I received. I experienced true love through that support from various sources. I learned to look at my existence in the universal scheme of things and the universe itself became a source of support to me. I did break a few more times on the way as I let some people in with their arms flailing wildly around, totally unaware or disrespectful to the fact that these are just glued together pieces of me. The cracks were less deep – traumatic but less deep this time.
I learned to become strong in choosing what works for me and what does not. To keep myself together. Because I loved myself now. There were people that had taken space in my pot for a long time earlier, I chose to keep them at a distance from me now and that hurts. Also there’re people that I had held lovingly in my pot before, who won’t interact with me anymore. I am just not the same person to them anymore. That hurts too. But then I have hurt some people very similarly along the way too. I forgive myself.
Now love is what I feel when …
I am watching the rain at leisure or driving alone in the rain while singing along a song.
I am allowing the sunshine on my face in lukewarm weather.
I am watching waves crashing on rocks.
Fall leaves crunch under my feet.
Magical moments show up in everyday unfolding.
Having a coffee with a great conversation.
A friend calls in just to know if I have had lunch or if I slept well.
Someone offers me a space of trust and confidence to be myself.
I look at myself in the mirror after I have created a new outfit from random pieces in my closet.
Someone allows me to witness and be a part of their life transformation.
I am playing board games with my sons.
My husband offers to stay home or help out with anything I need him to. His steady presence sustained in my life through unimaginable conditions. I still love the flowers but don’t depend on them.
I feel like I have hit this jackpot of love where I relate to people with the interest of genuine human connection. Genuine, uplifting, nurturing, nourishing, motivating, inspiring interactions … sometimes silly and meaningless laughter that lightens the whole being and other times you can smile or just be sad with no reason or pretense. You give and receive love through subtle ways and then during intense situations.
So these are my intentions towards Love – I do not want any of my relations to work to my advantage without empowering them to feel good about themselves. I do not want anyone to love me more than they do themselves …because then I run the risk of me loving them more than I do myself! I will want the persons I love to choose better for themselves first. And we all practice together loving ourselves best we can, helping each other earnestly on the way.
Love hurts … Lack of it certainly does hurt a lot …So love yourself a lot more!