This is a difficult piece to write, but timely, given the fact that it has been the topic of many recent conversations. Not in specifics, but in the generalities of love.
I have, however, put this blog together in my mind a thousand times. As I talked with people who tell me they have experienced love, I find it not only fascinating, but I also find it to be baffling. And I wonder what’s wrong with me that I’ve never been able to experience these feelings with anyone. It’s like someone is speaking Greek.
Now, when I talk of “love,” I am referring to the love of a boyfriend to a girlfriend or a husband to a wife. Not love of family, of children or of parents, or even the love of a good friend. I am talking strictly of love with no prior, or no blood, connection.
This idea amazes me because not only have I never experienced feeling that way about someone but no one has ever felt that way about me. And that’s the part I had so much trouble understanding. Love has to be a two-way street. No way around it.
So as I have talked to others about their concepts and experiences with love, I realize I have literally never experienced this emotion. Or really anything close to it.
I spoke to someone recently who said when you’re in love, you never want to leave the side of the person you are in love with and when you have to, you cannot wait to return. You swell up inside when you see them. You can’t stop thinking about them. In a way, they become your life. Or, they become the most important thing in your life.
First, to address “never wanting to leave the side of the person you’re with.” I can say in all honesty I have never been around a significant other for more than 48 hours at a time and by then I was ready to get away as fast as my feet could carry me. I believe very much in the old saying, “familiarity breeds contempt” because it is so easy for me to just get literally sick of someone to the point I don’t care if I ever see them again or not. I can honestly say, in every long-term relationship I have ever been in, all I could think about was getting away, putting distance between us and showering as quickly as possible.
I can’t imagine being around anyone 24/7 and actually wanting to and anyone actually wanting to be around me that much. The closest I ever came to that would have been in high school, and that was more that she wanted me around to keep an eye on me.
Next, to address “when you’re away, you can’t wait to return.” I don’t think that far in advance. If I’m going to be away, I’m away for a reason and that reason will be the point of my focus. I’m certainly not saying I haven’t looked forward to seeing a woman or two or ten in my time, but I am saying that I’ve never been in a situation where I couldn’t wait to see a woman again. No woman ever held my interest to that degree.
This idea may have been more of a byproduct of marriage than anything else, and since I have never been (nor ever will be) married, then it doesn’t apply to me anyway.
Next, to address “you swell up inside when you see them.” I don’t understand that at all. I do understand feeling panic, nausea, aggravation and stress when seeing someone, as I have experienced every one of those with various women over the years. I guess you could also say I understand the opposite, because I have felt deflated at seeing some girls.
I have felt a feeling of joy and pride when I see my son, so I am assuming it is some kind of offshoot of that feeling. I just can’t imagine feeling that way about a woman. Wow.
Finally, to address “you can’t stop thinking about them.” I have experienced this, but I am pretty sure its in a totally different context. I’ve cried, I’ve been sick and I’ve been in a state of almost catatonic depression and been unable to think about nothing else than a few women I have known, but I am pretty sure that doesn’t count. I think this was meant to say that love means thinking nice thoughts about someone, not “I wish you would go away and never darken my life again,” because that one is consistent for me.
I have had dreams about girls while I was dating them, and that stretches as far back as I can remember, but the dreams themselves were usually based on my getting away from them, so I think even subconsciously I was working from that depressed point of view. These dreams usually involved me being in a “last man on Earth” type of scenario, which meant the women in question had basically disappeared and I was unable to find them.
Now, understand, I am not saying in any way that love isn’t a real experience and maybe it even lasts a lifetime. I’m not trying to put the concept of love down, or say it doesn’t exist. I’m simply saying it has never existed for me. All of this is completely and totally off base with me. I have never experienced any type of feelings even close to these.
I’m also not saying its not feasible that I could “fall in love” in the future, but at this point, as jaded and disinterested as I am in this whole thing, as well as the fact that I make myself as inaccessible as possible, I think the odds are greatly in my favor that I will never have to deal with this kind of thing. But, there’s a chance I could be wrong.
For those who have experienced it, I’m sure love is an amazing thing, because it sounds like it would be. I just don’t think its for me. I like to think of myself as the ultimate lone wolf, and I’ve always felt that way. I’ve been anti-marriage all my life. That will never change. I can’t imagine being married, but I guess if you actually were in love with someone who was in love with you, marriage would make sense. I don’t see it.
So, going forward, I am happy just to feel the love of friends who care about me and family that I still have contact with who care. It could be worse. It’s not like I’m an island unto myself or anything. And as the popular saying goes, you have to love yourself before you can love anyone else, and I’m still kind of working on that part.
And if I never experience what its like to love a woman and have her love me in return, well, I guess that was just God’s will. And I certainly would not question that. If a couple of years down the road I meet a woman who fits the bill, then I would be open to it. I’m not ready to call it a day just yet, though I am for the rest of this year. And if I miss a chance that comes along in 2018, well, that’s on me. But I think everything happens for a reason and if I’m supposed to be with someone someday, it will work itself out.