Years ago when I was a little younger, I thought to myself...
They said if you love someone, let them go, but if you really love them how is it possible to watch them leave and be okay with it?
Lately, I figured out why.
I must say it's been an eventful month, and all that happened have changed my perspective on many different things - Just seems like "breakup season" where most people around me are facing a rough patch in their relationship, whereas some going through breakups... And me being me, I've always found a certain pleasure in people confiding in me about their love-life problems; I like knowing how different people cope/handle different situations, cos they are thought-provoking and I feel like every encounter teaches me something new.
One of my girl friends got together with this guy several months back and even though I could tell she didn't really like him as much as he did, she did feel a form of attachment and it came to a point where it was hard to distinguish between - being with him because she needs him and being with him because she loves him. On the other hand, she did feel like she had this guy at her fingertips, she felt like his love for her was genuine and that he would always love her - Now here's the plot twist: He started changing. Disputes arose, things got tense, all of a sudden they were hardly talking and he wasn't putting in as much effort as before. Next, he needed a break from her and from the relationship. From hardly talking, they stopped talking. That was when she broke into a bucket full of tears, telling me she would do whatever it takes to have him back, claiming she finally realised how much she "loves" him. She was convinced that he would return, for all the time they've spent together, for all the effort he has invested, she insisted that he still loves her and all that he needed was a break.
I felt so sorry for her, because deep down, I knew what was gonna happen next. To me, "breaks" or "timeouts" are usually just excuses to breakup with someone and having to feel less guilty about it.
After comforting her, I had to break the awful truth, I knew he was never coming back, she was just being delusional and blinded by the current situation. I told her that she doesn't love him as much as she thinks, the only reason why she's feeling this way is because he's gone, she's hurt and that she never would have expected him to walk out on her or at least not before she does. - All these contributed to the pain she was feeling, but to me, it wasn't love. I took a bet on that, cos honestly, who am I to judge what love is?
But guess what? Everything I said came true.
Many of us probably once had that person whom we thought we love, but realised later on that it wasn't love when someone new came along. The cycle can go on and on, getting hurt, moving along... So how does one ever know who's the right one?
And even if we know; What's right may not be the best and what's best may not be right either. What about the right one at the wrong time, and the wrong one at the right time?
See, here's the thing, love is like taking a gamble, we sacrifice/forgo other opportunities for that one person we love (or think we do) and risk getting hurt in order to see if things could work out. You'll never know until you try and you'll never know what you've been missing until you lose it.
Relationships don't only involve love but they also involve time, patience, commitment, compromises and making concessions. And I guess that's what makes relationships so different from our grandparents' or parents' era. Back then, the roles of a husband and wife were so much clearer. Husband, breadwinner - Goes to work, earns money. Wife, house wife - Stays home, does housework, take care of children. However, over time, in the present world, these roles overlap. Due to equality, both men and women may often exchange roles, either that or one spends too much time working and ends up not having quality time with his/her family. So with all these additional factors, the level of patience, commitment, understanding and sacrifices increases. Finding the "right" one who would go through all these with you isn't as easy as before. Not every candidate would have the willingness to do so.
Which brings me to the thoughts I've been getting after my girl friend's incident...
My love life has always been a mess, boys after boys... And I finally decided that I'm so over short-term relationships. My longest was 10 months, and... let's not even talk about the shortest. Short-term relationships are overrated. It's no longer about finding that "cute" guy I have feelings for, it's about finding someone with an acceptable or a proper background and financial status, a guy who could better me in all different ways, a guy who's not only gonna be there during my best but my worst as well, a guy who would get along well with my family, and a guy I could foresee being with for the rest of my life.
As someone who lives off a pretty decent life, there are still a million other factors that could possibly add to how unhappy I am. Shit happens at times and I tend to allow myself to agonise over things for way too long, I used to spend most of my time wallowing in self pity. I think I'm a little sick and I don't know if this sounds abnormal, but I actually indulge in the pain. I enjoy being able to feel cos it's way better than the feeling of numbness.
Growing up teaches me to "SUCK IT UP" because eventually, reality sets in and we all know that love isn't gonna be as simple as just two people being together and having to live happily ever after. All these love movies and fairty tales we grew up watching are not real. Relationship goals aren't true, people only choose to show you what they want you to see, you never know what goes on behind cause no relationship is as flawless as it seems.
We form such high standards on how we want our ideal partner to be we don't realise these expectations are often unrealistic. Girls expect guys to be chasing forever just like how they would in fictional stories, guys get annoyed when girls play hard to get but treat them like trash when they are easy. Sucks doesn't it?
Then again, how wrong is it to want only the best for yourself? How wrong is it to feel like you deserve more when after all, once you fall in love you're not only devoting your feelings, but your entire life to this person as well?
You only know what's missing until it's gone.
It's true and deep down we all know that. Majority, be it male or female, we tend to take the things we get easily for granted, and only crave for them and want them back when they are out of reach. It's also a horrible, vicious cycle how we lose interest in the people whom we once wanted our whole lives, as soon as they gain interest in us.
We expect a love life filled with rainbows and unicorns, but c'mon, it's never gonna happen. As humans, we all expect our love to be reciprocated whether we admit it or not and we feel unhappy when we are unappreciated.
People fight and say things they don't mean when they are in the heat of the moment, but that doesn't mean that they don't love each other.
Sometimes it's through such trial and tribulations where people get to finally understand each other better by airing their grievances.
It's just part and parcel of every relationship. However, it's also the period where things may start to go downhill because people at some point realise things just aren't working out. Realising there are more differences than similarities, feeling more often sad than happy, or feeling like you can no longer uphold your partner's expectations of you - It happens.
Above all that I've just mentioned, I just wanna emphasise that absence isn't love. Don't mistake missing someone for loving them. I'm not saying you can't miss someone when you love them, I'm just saying it's probably not love if you only feel for something the moment you lose it. That feeling you feel, is the pain of losing someone who once dedicated their entire life to you.
You can't just say you truly loved everyone you lost, right? If that's the case, what exactly is love to you?
With love, comes pain and sometimes you just have to find that one person worth hurting for.
The thing about people these days, is that when we get hurt, we hurt people. We stop loving because it hurts, and then we bring that pain on others whether it's intentional or unintentional. We fear to love again, we built a wall so high and we start shutting everyone out - But it wouldn't take long before it hits us that we're unhappy because honestly, BEING ALONE SUCKS - and no one likes it. Anyone can say that they enjoy being alone and that they hate being around people, but the truth is, they secretly wish that there was actually someone who cares, and would care enough to fight so hard to stay simply because they love you.
Love is about being selfless and fearless - Love makes you weak, but it also makes you strong.
We lose trust and faith because we love and get hurt, but it's also love that helps us regain all these at the end of the day.
Is it easier to leave than to be left, is it easier to hurt than to be hurt? Then again, what's love without pain? I feel that one can only feel true happiness when they've experienced real pain.
"I think I've loved too much"
You can never love too much, it's not like you can put love in a cylinder and measure how much your love for this person is.
I guess to sum up "What's love?" - The epitome of love varies from person to person, we all have different ways of showing our affections and I guess only we can determine what love truly defines.
At the end, the person you end up with, might not be the one you love with all your heart, and the one you genuinely love, might not be the best for you. Or is this phrase just a worn-out cliche? The entire world can tell you what's wrong and what's right, what's good and what's bad, but only you can decide that yourself.
Let them go
Some people you meet are meant to stay, whereas some are meant to be lessons. If it comes to a point where you can no longer find a happy middle ground where both parties come to terms and have a common goal in mind, or if one party just wouldn't make the necessary concessions anymore and be willing to sacrifice for you or the relationship... Then I guess it's time to let them go.
Love can't be forced, and love isn't selfish. When you truly love someone, that's when you're capable of loving them more than you could ever love yourself. Which is why you'd rather suffer than to watch them hurt.
They say love is blind, but I don't think it is. In fact, love makes you see everything, the good and the bad, yet overlook the flaws.
So when I said I figured out how it's possible to leave someone you love - I guess my answer is that, if you love them enough, let them go, and if they were to come back for you, they were always yours. If they don't, they never were.
"A good relationship is when two people accept each other's past, support each other's present, and love each other enough to encourage each other's future. So don't rush love. Find a partner who encourages you to grow, who won't cling to you, who will let you go out into the world, and trust that you will come back. This is what true love is all about."
All these are just bottled up thoughts that have been on my mind for the last couple of weeks, I don't know if it means anything to any of you, but I hope it got you thinking. :)
Last but not least, here's my all time fav quote from the movie, Letters to Juliet. If you're a hopeless romantic, you might like this one.
"Dear Claire, "What" and "If" are two words as non-threatening as words can be. But put them together side-by-side and they have the power to haunt you for the rest of your life: What if? What if? What if? I don't know how your story ended but if what you felt then was true love, then it's never too late. If it was true then, why wouldn't it be true now? You need only the courage to follow your heart. I don't know what a love like Juliet's feels like - love to leave loved ones for, love to cross oceans for but I'd like to believe if I ever were to feel it, that I will have the courage to seize it. And, Claire, if you didn't, I hope one day that you will. All my love, Juliet"