Sunday, December 5, 2010

Love Evolution


Before JT, I've never actually been in a long-term relationship. The nearest I can think of was my first, which lasted a year, but it was so riddled with drama, break-ups and make-ups, that I'm not even sure I can call my partner at the time my "boyfriend". He was more my lover I guess, precisely because the relationship we had was rooted on more, uhm, primal concerns. 

It's different with JT because, well, he's my friend. I mean, technically, he's more than a friend, but what I mean is that our relationship is based on the same values that a true friendship is rooted on: trust, loyalty, empathy. The attraction is there definitely; I find him really handsome, and I'm hoping he reciprocates the admiration, but more than that, I like him; his personality, his laugh, his values. The things that make up his person, I love. I guess what I'm saying is that when I say I like him, I like him both in a physical manner, that is, how he looks, as well as in those other aspects that make me enjoy his company. 

A friend told me that she thinks that love is a "decision"; that is, that you have to wake up everyday deciding to continue to love a certain person. I told her I disagreed. I said love is a feeling, not a decision. To say that it's a decision is to dilute its unique quality, its rarity, because the thought implies that one can just decide to fall in love with anyone, in the same way one decides to buy a shirt or a car. Love requires a mixture of conscious action and serendipity; certain circumstances must arise, certain elements must fall into place. To say otherwise is to make love as mundane as, well, everything else. And love is anything but mundane.

She never agreed with me, although I pointed out that maybe what she meant is that love transforms into some thing not as easily described or defined as what it was in the beginning. It's still love I think, but it manifests itself differently. After three years of being in a relationship, I told her that the relationship I have with JT evolved, from something that seemed totally based on superficial reasons: looks, having fun, sexual compatibility, to something not as easily described. I told her it was much like my love for my family: (seemingly) inevitable, and forever.

Photo taken here.

33 comments:

  1. I agree with you - you don't decide to love someone, but sometimes you have to decide to stay with someone. There are flaws in every relationships and when bad times comes it's easier for some people to go away. For some people it's hard to stay and face the problems. Maybe your friend by saying that "you have to wake up everyday deciding to continue love a certain person" thought that you decide everyday to stay in a relationship not literally to love someone as she said?

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  2. One of the best things about truly loving someone is that it comes naturally. It's one constant cycle of discovery, wonder, appreciation, empathy among many other things - in this way it keeps on reaffirming itself and the people in love. :)

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  3. A friend once told me that happiness is a choice. I disagreed with her but I just can't put my reason into words. Guess I found the answer here. I totally agree!

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  4. So sweet. I wish you and JT more happy times together. Hope I find my own "JT" soon.

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  5. @starlight: probably. that makes more sense to me. :-)

    @spiral: that's a lovely thought. And true I think.

    @cherry: I actually have a blog post that discusses that, although with mine, I argued the same as your friend. Sorry for that. :-)

    Here:
    http://ficklecattle.blogspot.com/2010/08/happiness.html

    @Hi,me!: Awww. Thanks!

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  6. I totally agree love is difinitley not a choice, It's a feeling that comes naturally, if forced or decided upon it won't last!

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  7. I totally agree with you. You have to feel it, not decide on it. Love is magical, decisions are not, they are necessary. Glad you are happy :)


    http://lyndylou-whocares.blogspot.com

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  8. love is not a choice; otherwise why would so many of us have suffered, at one time or another,in dysfunctional relationships? good piece thanks...

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  9. I think you are talking about two different things here. Love is indeed an emotion, based upon many factors, and felt vicerally. You can love someone and not be able to live with or near that person. However, being in a relationship is a choice. It is the choice between staying with the person you love, even when it would be easier to not stay. Or leaving the person you love, but may not particularly like at the moment.

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  10. Good post. I am not sure what I think about love. I used to think love was cleaning up the afterbirth at the hospital, but now I am not so sure.

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  11. Good post. I think J9 said it well. (Although I will preface this with I have never been in love, so these are not facts I am spewing, just what I have observed.) But it seems that love is definitely an emotion, but as you said, Fickle, I think it somewhat changes in form over time. The decision part, I think would come in, in deciding to stick with that change, even if it may be scary and unknown, or not as exciting as the initial feeling of butterflies love once was. Good post, and I am happy you are happy :]

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  12. Fickle, thanks for commenting on my blog. I agree that love comes unbidden, but at some point when things get difficult, or even just a bit routine, we have to choose to love. Not just to stay in the relationship, but to remember why we fell in love, and what it takes for our beloved to feel loved... and then we have to take the initiative to do that. (Another way to look at it is that some people choose NOT to love but to put themselves first.) You have a really interesting blog here!

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  13. Awww so cute!!!! When I met my boyfriend, I somehow knew that this relationship would be "mature". We've had difficulties and some arguments but unlike other relationships, we've reached agreements, made compromises and have accepted that neither of us are going to be 100% perfect. We just can't imagine being apart from each other because despite the ups and downs, we make sense.

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  14. sometimes I feel that's its a decision,.. but hearing the word decision makes me feel like it's more than a task than a free emotion..

    i can't describe love.. because when we describe love.. it will become THOUGHTS.. and we don't like having just thoughts.. we want to have the FEELINGS of being love and in love.

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  15. For those of us who believe in love at all, it seems as though there are all of these different camps to choose from when it comes to debating what love actually is.

    One camp thinks that love is an emotion like any other, like anger, frustration or amusement, that it recurs over and over just as often as those do, that it's as easily discarded if necessary. I guess thinking that love is a "decision" would fall in that camp, also?

    Another camp, the one I'm in, believes that love is that specific reaction inside of you to the same thing inside of another; two like places finding a home in each other. When you look at it on paper, I didn't 'decide' on my life mate. He is nothing like the man I fantasized about, he's different in appearance, personality and behavior than I drew in my head when hunting for Mr. Right. But I met him, and that thing in me reacted. I knew I'd found my home, and then the trivial shit didn't matter.

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  16. i, too, prefer my love to come when i least expect it. i want it to ambush me in broad daylight and when i look at its face recognise that it is indeed love. oh, and i want it with sex. lots of. ;-)

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  17. The JT must be really lucky to have you :)

    "Love is anything but mundane -Fickle Cattle"

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  18. Love: when it's right, it's never a decision. My life changed completely after I found my love. I had a plan before I met him. Afterwards, my life's plan was totally different: I was with him and I was ecstatic my life had changed. 9 years later, it's still not a decision. The love looks a little different: it's the inevitable, forever kind that you mentioned. It's never mundane. It's the kind that fills your soul and you grow together as a tree, spreading branches, growing roots, blossoming and changing colors and getting reborn every now and then. Day after day, year after year you grow stronger and more beautiful. You get knots and burls, yet they make the tree more beautiful. It's not a decision and the true kind is more than a feeling: it's the merging of two souls that allow each other to thrive. :-)

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  19. I love the picture you chose for this post. It's way cool! I think there are different kinds of love, but in English we use the word love to describe all different types. That makes it harder to define. I'm glad you're in a good relationship.

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  20. for me, its actually both. love is a feeling that we should always think before venturing. thus, making it a decision.

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  21. HECK NO. i love my husband and i don't have to wake up every morning deciding to love him. sure sometimes he drives me effing nuts and i chant to myself, you love him, you love him, don't kill him, you love him, but i can look over at him whilst we laugh or sit in comfortable silence and be content with everything...

    i DO agree w/ wandering commuter and you have to decide to keep the love alive <3

    ***ladyvader99.blogspot.com***

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  22. One thing that I have learned very recently about relationships is that yes you want a friend before a partner and sometimes you don't even know what you're feeling until you consider that word.

    I have found someone not too long ago and even though it's only been a few weeks, there is no better word to describe my feelings, my genuine feelings towards him. And this goes on more than one level too.

    http://theadorkableditzmissteps.blogspot.com/

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  23. I don't think anyone fully understands love or why they love someone. That's part of the fun.

    Jai

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  24. hmmm.. i think i agree with you. love is a feeling not a decision. you won't decide whether to love a person or not, you just simply FEEL that you do, lol!

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  25. Great post. I am choosing to be happy that you are happy. Congrats on finding someone worthy of your love. And I agree with J9, who nailed the whole concept.

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  26. i agree with you. If you 'decide' to love a person then surely youre forcing yourself into something that isnt meant to be, whereas if you let feelings decide then you know its right!

    Great post

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  27. My husband askes me why do I love him. I can list many thinks about him that I "like". But I can't put into words why I LOVE him. I just DO. I agree with you. Love is not a conscious decision we make. I didn't wake up and decide "Yeah, I'm gonna love him today".. lol.. that would be very frivolous indeed.

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  28. beautiful. love is a feeling. the greatest feeling ever.

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  29. Wow. You are a beautiful writer.

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  30. I share your perspective on love and I really appreciate how you articulated it. Love is not a choice it's an emotion, but perhaps being loving towards someone is.I have been married for 21 years- we are not always IN LOVE, we fall in and out all the time. But we try to always be loving towards each other. In the long run- how you behave and treat each other will help shape the evolution of your feelings and relationship.

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  31. This was one of the sweetest posts I've ever read. Best of luck to you both.

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