“Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.”
Life is a complicated thing. Often it gives the test first and the lesson afterward. There are times when we think our heart will overflow with joy. There are other times when our heart breaks into a million little pieces and we're sure it will never be able to be healed again. We bump into one another and, like the ball in a game of Pong, our paths are permanently changed. With the smallest word, we find we are loved in a way we never imagined. With the tiniest slight, we are overwhelmed with loneliness.
As anyone who is a friend of mine on Facebook knows, the last month has been a tough one for me. I am fortunate that my family members are well, I have a stable job, and my health is good. But my heart has been broken and the loneliness I feel often overtakes me. A friend, who used to be a lover, has moved onto a new love. Yes, I split up with him. While I do love him, I am not in love with him. It's not a relationship with him as a lover that I miss. Our relationship had morphed into a deep friendship. We spoke every day and saw one another at least once a week. We had wonderful conversations of a kind I've never had with anyone else. I knew that he would always be there.
And then he wasn't there anymore. He had found a new love and was steeped in the beginning parts of a relationship when life is amazing and your world and your time are centered on that person and getting to know them and spending as much time with them as possible. Time's a funny thing, you know. It's finite. It's a pie that can never get any bigger and when you give a bigger piece to one person, that means all the other pieces have to get smaller. So that's what's happened.
And I'm happy for him. But for the last month I've been trying to figure out why this change has been so devastating. Tonight I feel like I made a breakthrough. The overwhelming sadness I've been feeling is not about him and me wanting to be with him. I broke up with him for reasons and those reasons haven't changed. This sadness isn't about him. He's simply a concrete thing for me to center my pain on. No, it's not about him. It's about me.
I'm sad because I'm lonely. I have lots of friends who are wonderful and supportive and always there to sign on for whatever crazy thing I want to try next. But that's only a part of the love I think we all need in our lives. I need people to lean on and talk with and laugh with and cry with. But I also need the kind of love that can only be shown when a man takes me in his arms and kisses me deeply. The love that comes from someone who wakes up early in the morning because he can't wait to talk to me. A man who sees something he knows I will love and can barely hold in his excitement as he shares it with me. Someone who likes the curve of my hips, the feel of my skin and the way I can't help but laugh hysterically at those videos of animals doing silly things. Someone who knows that when I say I'm okay, I'm really saying, "Please drop everything and come take me in your arms, listen to me and tell me that everything is going to be okay." And that's exactly what he does.
Maybe I'm expecting too much. Maybe I've watched too many "chick flicks". Maybe the best I can expect is someone who doesn't take up more than his half of the bed, takes out the garbage and kills all the creepy crawly things. I hope not.
But that's what it's all about, isn't it? It's about the hope. It's about the hope I have that I will find him and he will find me and we will bump into one another and change the paths of our lives in amazing ways that we had never imagined possible.
So I will probably still cry and I will still feel overwhelmingly lonely, but there will be a part of me that knows it won't always be like this. That's the part that will remind me that I am wonderful and witty and amazing and worthy of a love that is good, true and beautiful. That's the part that will remind me that I am already loved by God and the universe and my friends. That's the part that will remind me to hug more people and to tell those loved ones that I care about them more often. And with all of that love bumping into those around me, it's only a matter of time before it bumps into me again.