I’d been confused for so many years. I really did believe in “happily ever after”- of course, knowing that I wasn’t going to get a Fairy Godmother and magic shoes. (Well, I mean, technically I could, knowing me, but…you know what I mean.) I even knew couples that were living in love, after decades of being together. I’d seen evidence.
The truth was, though, I’d never seen evidence of it in my own life. I’d been in love, numerous times. I’d even had multiple, long relationships that kept going reasonably well for years. But I had never been able to get back that “in love” feeling once it had been lost.
Do you know what I mean? I mean that delicious Presence of being in which each person is grateful and conscious every day, of the absolute deliciousness of Connection. That.
Many of us have been told there’s no such thing. Those in-love hormones wear off. Things become routine. It’s not as exciting as it was before. Blah, blah, blah.
No, it’s not all hogwash. There is an extent to which that is true.
And, here’s the big truth that I have discovered: there’s a big difference between “things getting real” and losing that open-hearted Connection with each other, that Presence that makes all the difference.
Things getting real is moving in together. Things getting real is finding out that the “other(s)” has habits that make you go “ewww.” Things getting real is finding out that they know how to push your buttons very HARD (and that is not sexy, for those of you getting turned on at the mention of the word “hard”). Things getting real is when they leave the toilet seat up at three in the morning and you almost fall into the pee that they didn’t flush. Things getting real is being together long enough that you dare to let the other(s) see who you really are, in your absolute worst, darkest moments.
That is REAL.
And we’ve all been there, haven’t we?
Now, here’s the thing. All of that and more can happen, and we can still be fully in love, FULLY in head over heels Love….
As long as we don’t let our negative feelings confuse us, as long as we don’t let them color our perceptions. It sounds like this:
“Oh, baby I was really pissed off (no pun intended) last night when I sat down on the cold toilet bowl. It’s a good thing I don’t hold a grudge.”
“Wait, maybe when you touched on my #1 core wound that I’ve been running away from since childhood, and I was sure you were a complete asshole…maybe, just maybe, you are my angel, my love, bringing up these traumas for me, so that I can heal them.”
“Wow, I’m so glad I didn’t bring this up three days ago. Then, I was blaming it all on you and not remembering that I had my part in it too.”
“I wonder what we can learn from this?”
“I wonder how we can get back into a space of Love before addressing this?”
When those things aren’t said, when those approaches aren’t taken, that’s when negative feelings start building up, that’s when there starts to be something that feels like a coating over our hearts. That’s when we can still feel love, but it’s dulled. And with each incident that doesn’t get properly cleared in our bodies and minds, the negative feelings get compounded.
That’s not things getting real. That’s things getting very unreal. That’s when we have made up a bunch of stories in our heads about why the other person is a ______________. (Fill in the blank with your favorite put down.) That’s when our feelings for the other(s) reflect the stories, not the truth of Love.
How did I come to this amazing and certain conclusion? Because I went there with most- okay, all- of my partners in the past. At some point my “feelings changed”, at some point I lost touch with the truth of Love. And I couldn’t see my way back.
Now for the big confession: I was starting to do that with my Beloved now. No, I wasn’t as unconscious as in the past. I realized when I was heading in the wrong direction. I talked about the triggers, the thoughts, the feelings, that were coming up. I thought I was doing such a great job of being transparent, more that I ever had in my life. And I was.
But being transparent and hanging on to one’s stories are not mutually exclusive. Some of them I held on to even after talking about them. Even when I knew they were total bullshit, as always. Truth is, I wasn’t fully hearing him or having compassion for him about what he was experiencing. I wasn’t always knowing that his experience was valid, just as mine was. And, I wasn’t feeling fully heard in the exact same ways. Assumptions were made. Grudges were held. (I’m sure you know, one party is never without responsibility for what happens; that’s not the point.)
The point is, we all have egos. The point is, we can and do all get off track. The point is, we all have unhealed things from our past, no matter how much work we’ve done individually. The point is, Love and Compassion and Connection go hand in hand. The point is, when we remember these Truths, they are literally fool proof.
The good news is we dealt with and continue to deal with our shit; we do have mad skills. And, it’s like the heart-coating is dissolved. I’ll speak for myself- I am choosing to be happy instead of right, and it feels damn good. It feels like coming home.
And, I can honestly say that I am deeply rooted in Love once again. Just like- oh no, better than-when we first fell in love.