To love and to be loved in return


 

Pondered and discussed many a times, but seldom experienced the true feelings and emotions, and the very few blessed ones who have are either in bliss or some who are eternally in pain yet in love with the feeling. Love!

Many aspire to experience love, some assume from what they see and are told and some imagine it to be something that’s a wonderful feeling that completes their experiences. Many feel being in love makes them more tolerant and some feel it makes them feel peaceful yet there are those who fight, in love, which is mauled by their very own ego, envy and possessiveness. Often mistaken as something that one rightfully deserves for just merely existing, many forget that love is actually about giving unconditionally. And experiencing love is the wonderful act when someone returns that love you have given them.

Love is a feeling, an emotion, and an experience that’s not tangible. It cannot be held, possessed, locked up, or limited. It has to be realized as free as it should be. Once a person begins to feel possessive, and selfish about love, it disappears like a smoke. Love is also the pain in which one missed someone. Love is also in the happiness when it’s shared. Loves can also be a one way street. One can be in love secretly and still feel loved.

Love, is not just about an exchange of emotions or the complexities that part takes within a relationship between two individuals. I feel it’s about the emotions involved within ones heart when they give away something that is very dear to their heart to someone else and find greater satisfaction and peace in doing so. It’s about the thought process one undergoes along with their own very personal emotions when selflessness becomes more valuable then what you get out from a relationship. It is about the synergies and the willingness to give up something for the other person’s happiness or to accommodate a situation for other person’s happiness. It’s about one finding peace within owns pain. It’s about the little moments and gestures one takes for granted when in love but die for every single one of them when they are apart. It’s about each and every sense of theirs that is associated to moments shared that they can think about and dwell in it for a life time. It is a personal self induced level of pain and sorrow that they themselves allow it to push it to the maximum threshold.

 

The hunger for love is much more difficult to remove than the hunger for bread.  ~Mother Teresa

 

Sadly all of us live in a very practical world with several outside influences that are ready to bombard us with their ever willing wisdom and positive reinforcement that helps us stride over any difficult circumstances in our world. And we has a part of the culture we live in or believe in are too vulnerable to quickly enshroud ourselves in these numerous shades of cloaks that are thrown upon us to cover our wounds, which I believe are usually inflicted by ourselves as a result of our own choices in reacting to situations.

The problem with us as human beings is that we are fundamentally flawed. We grow in a culture or society that influences our behaviour in various ways hence building our basic knowledge of life and what love and separation is. Then we are further influenced by situations and individuals that show us how to react to a situation. As time goes by, we build our own ideas on what is wrong and what is right. Thankfully many of us usually are on the ball with basic morals and principles in life, but sadly we all falter in our choices in reactions.

Over 90 percent of what we believe life is a result of our own choices in reaction to any situation in our lives. For example, we choose who to love, we choose who we think are good for us based on what we choose to be a lifestyle we want to live, we choose how much we want to give then in a relationship, we choose to limit our sacrifices or go ahead hook line and sinker, we choose to expect things in return, and we choose to react to situations as we feel is right when things don’t go the way we want and we choose who to blame for it and we choose what to do with the situation, and we choose to part ways or to mend it etc. of course, all this or many of this is only true when we are given the choice. But then again, we choose to succumb to the situation due to our own willingness to accept or we can choose to fight.

 

A lover is a man who tries to be more amiable than it is possible for him to be.  ~Nicholas de Chamfort

 

I believe that if we have our choice in how we build and react to situations in a relationship, why do we often choose the wrong path that usually hurts us the most? Many of us are usually very smart enough to choose between right and wrong but why do we choose to later anyway? When a close friend of ours says something bad or offensive to us, many of us choose to keep quiet and not react to it because of the friendship. We knowingly or unknowing take a lot of unflattering and at times humiliating criticism from our close friends, but we choose not to accept any criticism from our loved ones or our life partners, why? Why are we quick to apologize to our friends or forgive them for their mistakes when we don’t do the same with our loved ones?

I have found many people who never indulge in self criticism. And they do it by a very conscience choice. We are surely victims of circumstances many a times. But what we do with it is our choice. We are more inclined towards animal instincts and trick ourselves into believing in it rather than resort to our self reasoning or choose to react to a situation with the most positive impact.

In love or in separation, if we choose to react to any argument, situation, circumstance which will result with the most positive impact in the other person, we could make our lives almost perfect. But we have traditionally chosen not to. The choice of positive impact is ours but the circumstances that befall upon us is often beyond our control. In love we choose to woo the other person as much as we can because we desire to have them in our life at any cost. Some or many of us often choose to go to the extent of pretending to being someone who we aren’t to win the other persons heart. But once we have accomplished what we wanted, we choose to fall back to who we are which results in the classic “you were so different before marriage, it looks like I am married to a stranger”. Why? We chose not to be honest. It is our choosing.

 

All men and women have an equal need for love. When these needs are not fulfilled it is easy to have our feelings hurt, for which we blame our partner. ~ John Gray

People tend to blame love casually. Love doesn’t fail anyone. One can’t be failed by love. Love is an expression, a feeling, a sentiment, an emotion. People, fail in love not by love, and people misuse or abuse love. Human beings use love to fulfill their momentary motives and selfish desires sadly. Don’t blame love but blame the lover. People fail you not love.

Love exists. It exists in many forms. Love for God, life, the look into a baby’s eyes, when a baby cuddles you back, a pet, a friend, a sibling, your parents love for you etc. Perhaps the type of love or the type of lover one seeks may be different or hard to find in the immediate vicinity, social circle, or current time and place. It is like you are thirsty for liquid and are choosing from the types of liquid filled in different jars. You are thirsty and wish to drink it, but you need to choose the right liquid you want and the jar of your choosing. But patience, openness, willingness to keep looking, faith that good does exist, and looking in the right places where a typical kind of lover may live will help one find that lover. It might take some time or a life time if you are specific, but it sure is worth the time, wait, and search. Because when you find after these troubles both will realize the value of each other. Also what is important is for one to see if they have the qualities to attract that special kind of a lover. If not develop those qualities and that lover will find his or her way to them.

Yes it is a sad fact that just to find an honest, simple, unselfish, loyal, and mature lover with decent values and morals is difficult to find. But if you have these qualities, be rest assure that there are many like you out there as well looking for the same. So the eventual crossing of paths and meeting shall happen.

 

We waste time looking for the perfect lover, instead of creating the perfect love.  ~Tom Robbins

 

People need to be realistic in what you wish for. Many out there expect a typical kind of lover but carry personal attributes, character and attitude that repel these kinds of lovers. For example Selfish, greedy, egoistic, negative, highly critical and judgmental and bitter people living in denial and arrogance shrouded in their pseudo social life, seek for genuine, selfless and generous kind of lover. It doesn’t happen. They may end up believing that love doesn’t exist. And for them, yes, sorry, the truth shall be quiet difficult, unless they make some positive changes to match and attract what they seek. As they say, you need to first become the change you like to see or seek.

So before you throw your heart away callously in the name of love, it helps to take a moment and think of the realistic choice you are making and who you are making it for. One can choose to wait because love always comes around in many shapes, and colors. Because if you don’t exercise your right and freedom to “Choose” who you love wisely, you will have no one to blame but yourself should it not work out.

 

You can give without loving, but you can never love without giving.  ~Author Unknown

 

Love – an art of giving someone all that’s dear to you without expecting anything in return but secretly hoping it will be reciprocated one day! There are of course a zillion quotes, poems and stories about love, but very seldom experienced, shared, and learned from. How many times and who have we loved unconditionally, without expecting anything in return, yet giving its freedom and being tolerant of the person? But what I see more often is people in search of love in terms of what they can get, and how much in looks, time, loyalty and comfort to satisfy their needs with very little to offer in return.

 

Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.  ~ Peter Ustinov

 

Love is the art of understanding as a mature person that imperfections is a natural fact of a person and yet overlooking it for the purpose of still wanting to do good for a particular person. It is very emotional and yet spiritual. It gives you strength as you give more away and makes you stronger by making sacrifices. You enter a state of being were you have conversations, exchange ideas, laugh at their jokes and habits and are generally warmed by their presence, even when they are far away from you. You catch yourself thinking of them and smiling or laughing or even at times, perhaps talking to yourself. You at times smell them around, hear their voices and drift away from reality for brief wonderful moments of togetherness. One must also realize that love grows on you over time. It is not something that you can demand instantaneously and find it.

Another common aspect about love is having the wisdom and enough knowledge to identify and realize it. People often misunderstand love from infatuation. Especially the younger generations often fall into this trap and find them too deep into a marriage with a kid before they realize what it was in the first place a love or just an infatuation. Perhaps, another common contributing factor to a possible, divorce, separation, single parent situation etc.

 

A man reserves his true and deepest love not for the species of woman in whose company he finds himself electrified and enkindled, but for that one in whose company he may feel tenderly drowsy.  ~George Jean Nathan

 

I like to separate infatuation from love by a simple difference. Infatuation is what you want to get from this person in your life, where as in love you want to give yourself to this person for them. Also, love at first site, instant love and hitting it off etc, are part of the infatuation process where almost everything is instant and too quick, where in love, it takes it time, it grown on you, it happens to you as realization, understanding and emotion all work together to help you feel comfortable.  Here it is more substance, character, personality, and emotional balance where in infatuation, its immediate, physical attraction, social pride, biological, and momentary circumstances.

In true love, people are unselfish, giving in nature, patient for love to flourish and grow upon one and other, often behave conducive to the other person’s feelings, emotional, aware of the other person likes and dislikes and want to do things for them expecting nothing in return.

When infatuated, you often find yourself thinking of how you both can compliment each other in a particular social situation, party etc, the social appearance and acknowledge together, selfish, where your needs and wants are more then the other persons, you want to push the relationship to next level as opposed to let it grow naturally, and your happiness is more important then the others.

There is a sense of impatience when it is an infatuation as opposed to love. There is a sense of urgency to accomplish what you think you have lost or have been longing for. You want instant gratification. You want to have this person in your life immediately. You begin to imagine having sex, or rush to get into bed as soon as possible. You seek intimacy immediately. There is a strong sense of losing the person if you wait. Every other person around you seems to be looking at your partner and you feel threatened. You begin to seek advice from every other person, regardless of them being a good source or bad. You begin to react to every piece of advice you get and then add more fear to your thoughts by constant criticism and analyzing of the other persons character. And with all these fears and collective paranoia you rush into marriage only to regret later.

 

 When you’re in love you never really know whether your elation comes from the qualities of the one you love, or if it attributes them to her; whether the light which surrounds her like a halo comes from you, from her, or from the meeting of your sparks.  ~Natalie Clifford Barney

On the contrary love is calm, cool and collected. You feel patient, and not threatened. You will want to wait, and begin a beautiful process of introspecting and becoming a better person within to compliment the other. You feel calm and collected and always have time to plan everything you want to do. You are in no rush, and secure about each other. Love makes you feel good, motivates, and you will immediately see doing things differently in a positive manner. Your will notice an immediate change in your behaviour towards others and especially towards the ones you were upset earlier. You will find yourself to be more accepting, loving, forgiving, and whole as person. You deeply know that you are making the right choices and taking the right decisions. You are willing to wait as long as it is needed to fulfill your dreams. And most importantly you begin to look different and beautiful.

If you are one of those who feel, that its my life, my independence, my likes and dislikes, my money, my family, I am giving away this, I am compromising, my wants that are more important, then don’t shoot yourself when you have trouble in your relationships and find yourself being hurt, lonely, misunderstood etc. This is because such a selfish nature doesn’t contribute positively for a union of two separate individuals and personalities in a relationship to last and grow. It is often bound to fall apart unless the other is either very compromising or has totally given up and lives a dual life. Either way the meaning of love and togetherness becomes a pseudo relationship. You can of course blame the whole world and the two dogs across the street, but the fault lies in you.

People in love truly and honestly, often find themselves complimenting each other, inspire and motivate each other, treat each other with respect and yet are funny together, behave in a manner it shows that they are proud of their partner as opposed to being proud of themselves etc. Simultaneously, they are often patient and forgiving of each other, listen to each other, depend on each other blindly,  are patient with each other and above all, one strives to behave in a graceful manner often bringing calm and peace to the other.

 

The beginning of love is to let those we love be perfectly themselves, and not to twist them to fit our own image.  Otherwise we love only the reflection of ourselves we find in them.  ~Thomas Merton

 

Similarly, when once takes love to the next stage in terms of a marital relationship and look at it from a “compatibility” point of view, once have to first truly understand what “compatibility” is. It is often misunderstood to be a matching of likes, faith, culture, style etc. A proper and definition of compatibility is actually existing or performing in harmonious, agreeable, or congenial combination with another person. People do not have to marry a clone or their identical self to be truly compatible. In fact identical individuals often end up having greater difference eventually. Instead one should look for similar values, morals, comprehension, willingness to accept and respect the other for who they are and not what they can become, willingness to accommodate other persons like, point of view, and do it with and for love, not as a favor etc. These are what makes true compatibility and helps build a relationship on secure grounds of mutual respect and understanding. But one should also remember that it is not wise to hold on to certain beliefs or habits too adamantly without proper reason or basic understanding of its purpose which could weigh heavily on a relationship. One should be willing and open minded to exchange their old fears, rituals or closed belief systems they may have been raised with for a new life with more mature, modern, and mutually agreeable and beneficial values and habits that will nurture and help develop their new relationship.  Closed mindedness and holding on to old fears and belief systems yet expecting life partners who are modern and intellectual will only eventually put a lot of stress on the relationship.

Love is elevating. It lifts you up. It makes you look up. It makes you think up. It makes you a better person than you were before. If you have love in your life, it can make up for a great many things you don’t have. If there is no love in your life, whatever else there is has a lot less meaning. The secret of our being is not only to live but to have something to live for.

Lastly, as we all are aware, love grows with time where infatuation is weakened. So, take the time to realize what you are feeling and getting yourself into. Ultimately you will face the consequences of your choice. There is NO escape. If not anything else, karma will come back to bite you in the rear. I always say love finds its greatest satisfaction in making others happy over trying to use love to make yourself happy. And people who are capable of being honest and love truly from their heart can be easily identified. They seem happier, cheerful, speak their mind out, and generally there is a glow on their faces and carry a radiant personality. But those who aren’t often appear to be angry, carry a look of guilt, have trouble making eye contact, or blind themselves with their pride and ego, arrogance, lust and desperation. If you don’t agree and yet feel guilty of being one such person, take a look at yourself in the mirror. A little honest introspection won’t hurt!

 

Love never reasons but profusely gives; gives, like a thoughtless prodigal, its all, and trembles lest it has done too little.  ~Hannah More

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