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what is love?

Posted by Allison on May 16, 2012

So I have always sucked at love. I know it and now because of recent events in my life the world knows it.  I write this blog from the bottom of my heart,  I hold nothing back so there are many people out there who know my inner feelings that normally would not.   I’m okay with that.  So now this collective body that reads my blog will know more.  You see I’m insane.  I don’t think I would get a clinical diagnosis but it would be a close call.  I believe that there is a lobster out there for me.  Laugh away people.  But I believe it to the tips of my toes that there is  someone who ‘gets’ me and loves me anyway.  Someone who can hang out with me and I feel 100% myself.  Someone who can make me laugh until I cry.  Someone who calls me on my shit and I take it because they know me and love me and are calling me on my shit from a place that is genuine NOT because they need me to be wrong to feel better about themselves (can I get an amen?).  I believe that this person would be my best friend.  Okay let me explain.  I have life long friends.  People I have known since I was five years old. People I trust with my life.  I have NEVER had a relationship with a man where I felt that kind of friendship. And for me, I think that is the answer.  Well for a lot of people I think that is the answer.  I’ve had several talks with people in their 40’s lately regarding this topic and the one thing I know is that people who meet mates later in life (40+) seem to have different definition of true love.

 I believe in true love it is just my definition of it has changed over the years. I think when I was younger it was all about being saved and swept off my feet. Then in my 20’s it was about appropriateness and appearing like a grown up. I really thought I’d done the work needed to end up in a good relationship but ended up with my current ex-husband to be. Part of me is wondering if I was just lonely after so many years being single and missed some signs. My friends assure me that they were as snowed as I was but then I question if I’m delusional.  A part of me  wonders if what I want is even possible. I want a companion, a best friend. I want someone who loves me for who I really am, not who I present myself to the world. i want a ‘soft place to fall’ when the world seems to be too much. And I want to WANT him, like rip off your clothes baby I want you. Oh and I need him to feel the exact same way.  Above all I need faithfulness, you see after 10 years of someone cheating I’ve come to a couple of conclusions.  Number 1 a marriage can be ruined by infidelity even if you have NO idea that it is going on.  I believe that it is because somewhere deep inside your soul KNOWS and will not allow you to trust.  So you are then holding part of yourself back and unable to connect EVER with the other person.  It’s not right but you don’t know why, can’t put your finger on it.  This disconnect is felt by the cheater and pushes them farther away because their spouse “isn’t there for them”.   Number 2 infidelity can be about the other person and their issues and journey and have nothing to do with you.  Do I think there are reasons I ended up with my ex? Yes.  Do I take ANY responsibility for his actions NO.  I don’t care if I was a dragon bitch from hell who never slept with him, it’s not my fault.  He had a million other ways to deal with wanting out of the relationship and he CHOSE to stay although he was clearly unhappy and sleeping  around.  I was talking with a friend the other day and explaining what had happened.  She said “that is my biggest fear” when I told her that I knew NOTHING about the secret kid and the affairs.  And really it is the ultimate blind side BUT it also reinforces to me that it had nothing to do with me.  Because it didn’t happen and I stayed (not judging just making sense of it) it was a relationship that I was NEVER in.  I wasn’t part of a relationship.  I spent 10 years in the same ‘place’ as another person of the opposite sex who i thought I was in a relationship with but in fact I never was.  A relationship by definition includes two people and my ex was never in.  I had a one-sided marriage with a stranger.  Cold, but true. So the number 1 thing on my list is fidelity, and the best indicator of future fidelity is past fidelity….end of. I will never be in a relationship with someone who has felt the need to step outside instead of end it or fix it.  Sure people can change, but sorry darlin’ you’ll have to prove the whole “I’ve changed”  to someone else I’m not taking that on.  I’ll take on other baggage  but cheating, there’s the door.
So back to true love, here are some of the comments I’ve gotten that have resonated with me over the last few days from a special group of women that I lean on and trust to tell me like it is!
  • I believe in true love, but I think it’s rare for it to last a lifetime.
  •  I don’t believe in settling; I would much rather be alone, but that’s my nature. Some people thrive on constant companionship, so it may differ for them.
  • I believe that you choose to make a person your partner through all the good and bad, ups and downs. I don’t believe it’s easy, I don’t believe this person will or needs to “rock your world” every single day for the rest of your lives. I do think we (society) have these incorrect and impossible expectations that love means being sexually attracted ALL the time to only one person.
  • I believe people come together for reasons of sexual attraction. Some people think this is all they need – but it’s not. We need to learn whether we are compatible or not in other areas: drive, focus, support, desires for family, home or whatever, education, religious philosophy (or not) etc.
  •  I don’t necessarily think that there is only 1 person out there “for you” – I think there are several that fit the bill, but with varying levels of success.
  • Yes, I actually believe in “true” love that endures. But I think it’s not about finding the best person out there,for me, it’s finding the person who fits me and my personality best, and then – to not look again.
  • I think the people who ‘nail it’ at a young age are very wise, lucky or had a role model that made it easier to establish what they want.
So do I think my lobster is out there? Yup.  And the lady who put it best for me said it like this “I find that instead of looking for the perfect man, I’m looking for the imperfect man I can’t live without.”  Perfectly said.

5 Responses to “what is love?”

  1. I once read a quote that stuck with me ” Love is Friendship on Fire”.

  2. Kimberli said

    Allison ~ what a great post! I’m not sure of many things but I do belive I’m sure of one. Perfect love just does NOT exist for me. Notice I didn’t blanket ALL in that statement because for some I’m sure it does. Perfect love for me is making what I have perfect and working on it everyday. I’m on marriage #2 at 31 and we’re 7 years in. We’ve had some bumps…several HUGE bumps in this year 7. I just can’t fathom another divorce..and as horrible as it sounds, I find myself saying ‘even if I left, the grass isn’t usually greener and every person has their baggage.’

    I agree fidelity is a number ONE. I have yet to find total fidelity in either of my marriages and often look at myself in the mirror and think ‘Will I ever be enough?’ Like, fool me once and shame on you…then with marriage #2 something along those lines happens again. I am the common demoniator…WHAT THE HELL?!

    I think of you often and your adorable kids. Thanks for fueling my fire when I don’t think I’ve earned the right to have an opinion or right to stake MUST HAVE’s in my relationship.

    Um, not sure where that entire comment came from. Really all I meant to say is ‘What a great post!’ see what happens when the keyboard isn’t taken away from me 😉

  3. I love that final quote. And it’s true, many people can’t make it work, and they end up settling, or retaliate by coming up with the Ideal, an image that nobody can fit. Indeed, keep your options open. We can love more than once.

  4. Carlyle said

    While I am eternally single I think I will wade in on this one anyway only to say this – I am single because like they say “I would rather be unhappy and alone than unhappy and also have to put up with someone else’s shit”. That being said, when my friends ask me about their relationships I always refer to our brother and his wife, after 34 years you still sometimes have to remind them that they have their own room. I attribute that to the fact that they did marry their best friends (she married hers and he married his). I love the quote about Love is Friendship on Fire because I have had the chance to be warmed by it. Do I think everyone finds it … no. At the same time this is one case where less is not more.

    As an aside – If you feel the need to cheat it’s easy, just leave the person you are with first as you are already half-way out the door and you are just holding it open in case it is too cold outside. I read on Facebook the other day “If you won’t make her your wife, don’t make her a mother”. There has to be a similar saying about cheating out there somewhere.

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