Love is pain. Or so I always thought. There is a lot of pain when love is involved but at the end of the day, falling in love is magical.
So in my twenty-two years, I’ve fallen in love once. And it was pretty recently. In other relationships, I’d always hoped to fall for the guy I was dating but there was always a nagging feeling in me telling me that it wasn’t right. There were red flags with those guys and maybe I just wasn’t ready.
What many people forget is that there are different types of love.
Being loved. Being loved gives you the strength and support you need to learn how to love others.
Being loving. Loving someone is allowing another person close enough to hurt you and trusting that they won’t.
Being in love. Is a puzzle that you never want to finish because you’re enjoying putting the pieces together too much. It can be frustrating but with patience, the pieces come together to show a beautiful picture – a beautiful relationship.
People often mistake the three and worse, people misinterpret them. It is easy to love another person and it isn’t extremely difficult to allow others to love you. What is incredibly difficult is distinguishing whether you love a person or whether you’re in love with them.
I remember watching a TedTalk discussing emotions. I don’t remember the specifics but I do remember that the speaker stated that emotions were more based on experience and guessing than anything. She said that whatever we feel, it is based on things we felt before and we decided what that feeling meant to us. From then on, we apply that to our experiences in life. I know, that’s kind of confusing (again, I don’t claim to be the best writer or a professional anything).
Let me attempt to explain how I understood it. Say you drop your ice cream cone. You were really looking forward to it and you feel some type of way. Based on your understanding of being sad or disappointed, you decided you felt sad or disappointed in the moment you dropped your ice cream. As is the same for other emotions. You gave whatever you were feeling an emotion you know of and applied it to your entire life.
So what if you’ve never experienced an emotion? How do you know what you’re feeling then? Like say, being in love. For a person who’s never been in love, how do they know if they’ve finally fallen or not?
What I think is that desire to feel that way. You have to open yourself up to the new feelings you can’t identify and decide what it is exactly. Time definitely helps. You grow and experience new emotions constantly. Some you can’t really explain. That’s what I think being in love feels like.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure it’s also frustrating and consuming and like a million other things. But overall, there aren’t enough words to really describe and explain the depths of that feeling. When you’re in a relationship, you’re putting constant time and effort into it. Just like the puzzle analogy. Puzzles can range in the thousands when it comes to pieces, and they’re all meant to be put together. In the case of a relationship, it’s a massive puzzle that two people are putting together. It’s frustrating, annoying, sometime they get in your way and sometimes you get in there’s. Many times it’s tiring. All you want to do is give up when you feel like you’re not getting anywhere, but you just keep at it because you’ve already put in so much time and effort. Then slowly things start to become clearer and you can start seeing the picture start to come in.
Building a puzzle (read relationship) takes a lot of time and effort on both parties. You don’t want to agree to building a puzzle with thousands of pieces with someone only for them to give up after a while. And no matter how long it takes, you want the person to be as committed as you are. And that’s how you finish the puzzle. You commit to it and you do your best.
And you know what? Sometimes you lose pieces of the puzzle and can’t finish it. Like a relationship, sometimes you put a lot of time and effort into it, you’re committed but it just doesn’t work out. That happens. Don’t be discouraged and don’t devalue the love you share(d). The writer Tonietti, a good friend of mine once told me, “Sometimes you can love someone very much but still know they’re not right for you.” It was something I really needed to hear and I’m glad I was reminded that thing don’t always work out the way you hope they do.