After six intense months of a whirlwind romance, I was left standing all alone.
There was no dramatic breakup, and no harsh words were exchanged.
In fact, there was nothing but silence. That silence broke me down more than any dialogue ever could.
I had fallen for a commitment-phobe, a man who, by his innate personality, could never love me.
A few long nights and several bottles of Merlot later, some clarity began to emerge from the wreck I had become.
I discovered more about love from this relationship than from any other paramour I’ve ever loved before.
1. Love isn't practical.
I’ve tried to logic my way both in and out of love, but no matter how much rationale goes into my theories, emotions aren’t driven by practicality.
There are no sensible reasons why I should have for fallen this man. I’m not sure if I loved him because of this, or in spite of this.
There were red flags everywhere, warning me this relationship wasn’t going to last.
From the beginning, I knew we were slow dancing in a burning room (credit to John Mayer).
What do you do when you’ve found the best companion and worst partner you’ve ever had?
The heart is a muscle, and its only job is to pump blood. But somewhere along the way, it got this notion it could function all on its own and take command of your emotions.
Since your heart has no way of producing sound thought, it wreaks havoc with its utter nonsense, causing a type of madness we call love.
Although that’s not its function, let it be.
For a brief moment, you get to be a part of something impractical. This is the closest you’ll ever come to magic.
2. Some love isn’t meant to last forever.
In life, you will come across all sorts of different people who are meant to cross your path for various reasons.
If you’re lucky, one day, you’ll come across someone who lights a spark in you and will forever change the course of your life.
The awful truth of this matter is, these people are not always the ones we will spend the rest of our lives with.
This love came during a time of great darkness in my life, when I was convinced I would never love again.
I was proven wrong.
He showed me it was possible for me to love again, even if it wasn’t reciprocated, and even if it wasn’t meant to last forever.
3. Love constantly evolves.
Love should be classified as its own species of emotion. It’s like a virus that plagues mankind.
It evolves rapidly and mutates without warning, constantly adapting and surviving in different forms. It is fluid.
One week, love is sitting together bayside, watching fireworks illuminate the night sky. Another week, it’s a simple “Hello” text on a bad day.
Love has to be malleable because you wake up a different person every single day.
Love has to learn to evolve with the new person you are each day, or it will go extinct.
4. This is the real definition of love.
Romance movies and social media have somehow distorted our views of what love should look like.
For years, I thought love was a transparent lens. With each new partner, that lens would somehow come into focus.
The truth is, there is no single lens that can encompass all the different types of romantic love.
This relationship changed my very definition of what love is.
You can’t use love as a measurement or compare it to previous romantic endeavors, in the hopes it will feel the same.
With each new partner, what exists between the two of you is unique and beautiful within itself.
As F. Scott Fitzgerald has said:
There are all types of love in this world, but never the same love twice.
5. Love doesn’t heal a broken heart.
I am broken, as we all are. That is what happens when you're alive.
Our collective experiences have distorted us into these blemished beings, riddled with flaws and cracks.
The result of these imperfections is what we call our brokenness.
I dated a guy who will always be broken. Despite my best efforts and love, I can't heal him.
When you a date a commitment-phobe, you are entranced in an unending tango of one step forward and two steps back.
One hand is beckoning you to come closer, while the other is raised out, motioning you to stay away.
My love may have made him forget about the brokenness for a moment, but the stark reality set in again.
Love cannot heal your brokenness. Only you can.
They say experience is the best teacher.
Neither one of us was ready to be in a genuine relationship, but despite that fact, we continued on.
What was between us made me reconstruct everything I thought I knew about love. That is worth something.
Although my love will remain unrequited, I will always love him because of the lessons he taught me.