Tuesday, October 18, 2011

What is Love?

Everyone has asked themselves this question at one time or another. Is love finding the one person who completes you or is love resisting the temptation to throttle that person you wake up to every morning? I know there are different types of love, but are there different levels? Is love an all or nothing deal or can it be given out in measured doses?

Love and I have never had a good relationship. I’ve felt love and I’ve given love but I’ve always had a hard time trusting love. Love is terrifying. In my mind, when I picture love I imagine a body ripped in half, exposed and bloody.  Allowing yourself to love someone is like painting a target on your chest then handing someone the weapon with which to slay you. Love is awful! But it’s also pretty freaking great. I love love once I allow myself to leap into the abyss. That leap does not come easily. I have to talk myself into believing that it will be OK, that someone will be there to catch me. I have this fear that the person I’m trusting will say, “Just kidding,” just as I leave the cliff and I’ll splatter on the flagstone below.

In my opinion there aren’t levels to love. Love is a complete surrender. Love is the end. You’re putting your everything in the hands of someone else and trusting that person to treat it with care. How does anyone do that? I know I’ve done it before, but can I do it again? I really don’t know. Until I decide I’m going to sit here and discuss this quandary with my life long loves, Ben and Jerry.


  1. Ben & Jerry have never said "just kidding". They have never let me down as a matter of fact the filled me up. So really you can't go wrong loving them. As far as anything else I think it's a crap shoot.

  2. agree completely, love it, "ripped in two, handing over a weapon, "just kidding"
    oh my, great post. (guess that says something about me)

  3. Wow! Great blog post. It really gives me a little insight into who you are and what you are about. I love learning about you! Keep the awesome posts coming! (I need to know I wont be sharing a room with a future stalker :P)

  4. Love is somebody bringing you a wet washcloth when you're worshiping the porcelain goddess and not saying, "I told you that last mojito was a mistake."

    Love can be all kinds of things, but I'm wary of it too, having been splattered on the pavement more than once.

  5. Saw the link to your post on Facebook, and I have to agree. Wonderful post. :)

  6. I do agree, Katie. My tid bit for readers, love is very scary. Another question, how to keep love alive? Why is it called falling in love, because you fall. Face plant yourself in this other person's world and being. But how to keep it beating in your palm is the mystery. Patience, communication and spending time together. With kids it's hard. Once you find someone special, chisel time to relive that love in which made you fall in the first place.

  7. I have a difficult time with love. Period. I like the line from Sleepless in Seattle where Rosie tells Meg, "You don't want to be in love, you want to be in love in a movie," and I feel that way many times. It is darn scary for me to turn my heart over to anyone. But, sometimes, I just don't want to. I enjoy my solitary world of isolation. Just me and my keyboard or pen. It feels safe there...
    But, my husband keeps pulling me out. I admit, it's a struggle for me. Thank you for bringing the subject out of the closet, it needs to be a focus.

  8. I agree, sweetie. That's exactly the image I have floating around my head when I think of love. Bloody, open and just waiting for them tap dance on your soul.

    Having given love that was never returned with as much gusto as it was handed out, I am very wary of putting myself out there and allowing myself to step off that cliff because, as you said, if the man who promised to love me forever is no longer there to catch me...who the bloody hell will?

    All we can do is hope that someone will see through the idyosincracies (I know I haven't spelled that right) and the ability to retreat back into the shell if they get too close, and will think that I'm worth the trouble and the angst and want to scale the castle walls to rescue me from the tower...and be there to catch me when I fall.

    A beautiful post...succinctly stated :)

  9. Yes, l also agree, love in the beginning is scary, it's also madly exhilarating and all consuming! It takes time for me to let go with anyone, even friends, l don't want them to judge me. We protect ourselves for awhile l suppose, but it feels great when you let it all go and they are still there, loving you with all your faults!

  10. Katie, the more I read you, the more I love you! I couldn't agree more that giving yourself over to love is frightening, but I also think it is so worth the chance. All those frogs you gotta kiss to find THE ONE...I believe it's the best thing to do!
    I've hit the flagstone a few times in my life and once with devastating results, but eventually I took yet another plunge and guess what? HE CAUGHT ME!
    Absolutely wonderfully structured and perfectly written!

  11. oh, you know, Katie, I've thought about your post alot since yesterday. I know if I had not experienced the devastating love affairs that left me crumpled in despair, I would not have some of the writings I now have. My first book included.
    Once the pain dissipated, I had the courage to put my feelings, thoughts, and personal de-briefing to paper. It really helped me grow.
    I will agree, though, it can be a miserable way to grow. And, I will NEVER be fully trusting, I don't think I can be. Period.
    I hope you have a beautiful day.

  12. Katie, you have asked a profound question. A question that philosophers and greater minds than mine have been debating for centuries.

    I wish I had an answer to the question. I agree with most of what you've written except the part about degrees. I do believe there are degrees to love.

    There is a comfortable kind of love, when you enjoy the other person's company and you have a lot in common. This is the kind of love that will never grow old and not diminish over time. Then there is the hot, all consuming love that sucks all the air out of your lungs when the other person touches you or calls your name. Most of the time those two degrees of love seem to be mutually exclusive. I'm still trying to find that hybrid when the two come together in perfect harmony. When/if I find that, then maybe I'll have an answer to your question.

    A great post as always my friend - I love you.

  13. My darling Benjamin, we are all looking for the elusive love hybrid. Very few have ever captured that beast. Those who have guard it with their very lives. I have faith that the universe will eventually bring that love to you.

    I love you too.