An Un-Love Story

Memoirs of a Downward Facing Dog

Every day in my in my Facebook feed I am being told why, how, when, where and with whom I should be having a relationship.

“5 Signs He’s Not Committed.”
“How Do You Know You’ve Found the One?”
“8 Signs You’re Ready for Real Love.”
“The One Skill to Save Your Relationship.”

Who are these people who deem to dictate there is one way to love? How do they have the audacity to categorize the nuances, the intricacies and all of the beautiful subtleties of the human heart into one condensed and dumbed-down word?

So, I’m kyboshing “Love.”

We’ve been taught, over time, that there is supposed to be this someone out there. Someone who washes away all of your loneliness and fear. One person, (oftentimes wears jodhpurs, rides a white horse and has a full head of hair) who waltzes in and transforms your life into sunbeams and serenades. We become disenchanted when our relationships don’t change us into shinier, better versions of ourselves. When our lovers lose their rose-tinted hues, we internalize our failure; thinking perhaps our heart chakra is simply broken and always will be.

I feel as if “Love” has become this vapid word; tossed around so carelessly that it has lost all substance. Like heart-shaped foie gras, we are force fed this story of what love is supposed to look like. This recipe that is tired and untrue of first comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage, then comes divorce, custody battles, alimony checks and another round of failure that only adds fuel to this perpetual notion that we are unlovable. As if Love is a measuring stick of worth and happiness that defines every romance, affair, affection, attraction, or connection that ever existed between people, and only True Love is graced upon those who fall within its prescribed parameters.

There is no word, ring, vow or offspring that guarantees permanence. The language of love is not universal. And the way love is expressed or understood is as varied as the spattering of freckle patterns on all of our lovers’ skins. Lovers leave. They might meet someone new. They might decide to move to Africa to find the cure for Ebola. Knowing that the bottom could drop out at any moment, does it not make you just so grateful for every day they choose to show up?

What if we recognized that love is not a carpet to sweep our shit under? What if we might be in love and still be scared and lonely? And then realize that it is no ones’ responsibility save but our own to assuage our feelings of inadequacy. Might we love a little more freely, with more acceptance of another human simply trying to be?

And if we took Love out of the equation, with all of its implied assumptions, and removed our lovers from the boxes of expectation, might we be able to listen to a language of action, which is delicate and patient; one that stems from appreciation, understanding, respect, admiration and compassion?

So, I’m rewriting my story. I’m making my own definitions. In the absence of “Love”, I feel this ever-expanding space in my chest that is filled with tenderness, gratitude and joy.

Maybe my heart chakra isn’t broken after all.





1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. risingontheroad
    Oct 21, 2014 @ 02:40:36

    Ah this is wonderful. Exactly what I needed to read and so well put. I think sometimes we are so busy looking for the big romance and trying to shove and shunt it into the form we expect, we sometimes forget to act love, feel love, smile for the magics we have.


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