True love

Love to some is like a cloud

To some as strong as steel

For some a way of living

For some a way to feel

Some say love is holding on

And some say let it go

While some say love is everything

Some say they don’t know…

Love — the one emotion that all of us experience at some point in our lives. An emotion which defies definition. An overwhelming all-encompassing joy that comes saddled with its share of sadness.

I remember having countless crushes while in school. Our neighbour’s son, my best friend’s brother, a cousin’s friend, our judo teacher … I fancied them for the colour of their eyes, their swagger, or just the way they combed their hair. Harmless “puppy loves” as ephemeral as soap bubbles.

I’d always heard that you won’t even know what hit you when you find the love of your life — the one person you want to spend time with day after day after day. And it was true.

It came at a time when I was mature enough to take on the responsibilities of a relationship which demands a lot of give and not so much of take. Love was the edifice I built on the foundation of friendship. It took time to blossom. It took a lot of understanding, loads of communication, and plenty of patience to become what it is today. 

Most importantly, love to us meant a meeting of minds. Still does.

It was notches above infatuations and what my mom likes to call “the pleasures of the flesh.”

Our parents’ generation was fed lavishly with ideals. Theirs was an era of constraints, restraints, respect, admiration, and oodles of romance. An age where the distance between the sexes somehow managed to help preserve the sanctity of an amorous relationship.

Our generation, with its openness and fading lines of proximity, jumped on to the bandwagon of love with a little more haste and defiance of “traditions.”

The next generation, I fear, is going further downhill — not quite able to distinguish between physical attraction and mental compatibility. Love seems synonymous with both. Exclusively, even.

I am amazed when I hear stories of school kids bragging about the number of physical relationships they have had. I am horrified to learn that girls barely seventeen have already been in and out of five to six “hook ups.” What about the emotional baggage these kids will carry with them?

The mindset of our “always-plugged-in” generation is all too evident in their tweets and Facebook status updates — publicly handling their personal life.

I see more and more focus on physical beauty, less and less regard for intellect. Closeness gets more importance than intimacy. There is more of passion and less of emotion. More of frivolous comradeship, less of true companionship. There is more acquiring and less sharing.

More of me, less of us.

Maybe I’m old school, but to me it seems like the essence of relationships has been forgotten.

There’s much more to being someone’s beau than gifting them red roses and Hallmark cards. What about gifting our time, our company, our support, our friendship…? What about setting priorities where our loved one comes first?

What about giving ourselves, and the ones we love, time and space to build a strong foundation? What about working towards meaningful and lasting friendships?

What about honouring our commitments? What about channeling our energies and emotions towards building lifelong bonds rather than wasting them on seasonal relationships?

Love is so much more than a fleeting song and a glass of wine. It doesn’t always lie on satin sheets. It isn’t found in diamonds and perfumes and flowers.

It’s about respect, companionship, understanding, appreciation. It’s about being yourself and loving the other person for who they are. It’s about making it through thick and thin.

Relationships take work. Love makes it easy.

I believe that true love happens once in a lifetime.

Don’t let frivolous flings tire you out so much that when true love comes your way you aren’t able to receive it with open arms.

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19 Comments

Filed under communication, Personal, Relationships

19 responses to “True love

  1. Wow, that is one of the most beautiful and thoughtful posts on love I have read in a while. It feels scary that the essence of love is somehow disappearing in today’s world.

    But you know I believe that all those silly teens who brag about their hook ups and countless boyfriends want the same as everyone else. They want fairy tale. And today’s freedom gives them more opportunities to search for them. Yet they are not able to use these opportunities wisely.

  2. Mansi,i really enjoyed your post surely be back to read more.

  3. Love. Yup it hits you when you least expect it and in a way you can’t even begin to fathom.

    Nowadays love is no longer what people seek. People are after lust; short bursts of intimacy that they perhaps consider to be love – no wonder people fall in and out of love so quickly these days.

    A real relationship takes time to work on – to get to know and understand each other and be available to each other .. not just physically but emotionally and mentally as well.

  4. debosmita

    A high five to you on this post as I agree with you whole-heartedly. I also chose it as my “Mind Blowing Monday” post. Congrats 😉

    Find it at http://debosmita.wordpress.com/2010/03/22/mind-blowing-monday-vi/

    Keep up the good work 🙂

  5. Pingback: MIND BLOWING MONDAY – VI « Life's Many Whispers

  6. Let me play the devils advocate here…

    What we know,we hear or we believe is what we have been taught.now do we question that logic? no, we just follow.That is the essence or the fabric of our society.

    Everything that is wrong today can be right tomorrow, we know it was right 2000 years ago [kamasutra/polygamy] so what belief system are we talking about here?

    If man is the highest form of animal,and we are the highest in the food chain,and rightly on top of the animal kingdom – then we are the only ones causing a conflict by being monogamous – rest of the animal kingdom is polygamous in nature, or at least the majority.

    another example – let two babies grown up inside two glass boxes A & B – you teach baby A that alphabets are 1234.. and teach baby B that numerics are A,B,C,D… guess what will happen after 20 years?

    they will fight for their belief system.thats what they are taught right? so to each that is the right thing to do.or believe.

    funnily, that is pretty much the case all around the world isnt it?Wars, terrorism, religion or politics or sex.Each functions on its belief system.

    somebody’s pig is somebody’s bacon.! 😉

    • That certainly is a different take, Gyanban. Perspectives change, so do relationships with time … but aren’t some values supposed to remain constant? Values that go beyond the flesh … none of us are going to be “looking good” in another couple of decades — so shouldn’t “love” go deeper than the skin?

      • Gyanban, very thought provoking bottom-line you have go there. seriously.

        On the example of two different alphabets choice:
        ” let two babies grown up inside two glass boxes A & B – you teach baby A that alphabets are 1234.. and teach baby B that numerics are A,B,C,D… guess what will happen after 20 years? ”

        There is no point in teaching two different sets to them. They should be taught only one. Question is which one to choose. The choice should be made in a logical manner. Even tossing a coin to decide has a logic behind it, that is, in absence of any better way, the decision making should not be biased toward one option than other.

        Quoting:”What we know,we hear or we believe is what we have been taught.now do we question that logic? ”
        Why do not we question these logic? Why not. Is it because we do not want to question each and every logic and rely on the assumption that if different people question different logic, as whole we would be able to question each and everything? alas! do not see it happening.

  7. Ah.. You’ve nailed it right on target!

    Today, the love we see in youngsters is really superficial and biased. Beauty matters more than brains. Since I am a youngster, I could relate to your post very easily. You have young boys showing off their not-so-real-love with real dramatics, and you have girls doing the same, too. Our youngsters are actually, manipulating the real equation of love.

    True love, as you mentioned at the start with poetic lines, is what the young generation has forgotten to realize.. Anyway, I liked reading about your experiences. In fact, everyone has the same type of crushes when one is a child… Ha!

    I loved these lines as well. They make so much real sense – “It’s about respect, companionship, understanding, appreciation. It’s about being yourself and loving the other person for who they are. It’s about making it through thick and thin.”

    Wonderful take on love, Mansi!

  8. Mansi – old school with you! I’m not saying my parents had it right, or my generation (afraid I’m among the flower power children) but your writing rings true. Relationships today, for many of the young people, not all, is like changing the covers on the cell phones or just another ‘tweet.’ I’m not sure where the middle road is, but your observations are spot on. Ohh, to just learn to savor the precious time where all you could do was stare into the other’s eyes and let the eyes do the talking because your parents were watching. Great conversations!

  9. What is love?
    Love is any of a number of emotions related to a sense of strong affection and attachment. (wikipedia)

    “Relationships take work. Love makes it easy.”
    You have nailed it so precisely 🙂

  10. This is a message that is so important. I feel that our society is very much shaped by the influence of media. And that rarely promotes the qualities you mention. It’s all along consumerist lines – buy, consume, trash, buy, consume, trash.

    Why appreciate the beauty of a flower growing naturally in a park, when you can buy a bunch of flowers on special offer, in pretty paper and throw them away the next week?

    I think tv programmes, news stories and films are shaping the ‘ideals’ of what to aspire to and sadly, these ideals and aspirations are nothing to do with spirituality or goodness, but all about the advertisers dream.

    I think we need more ‘Grandparent wisdom’! More family wisdom. More spiritual truths.

    A razor blade company wants sales. It shows a man getting the girl(S) and this is the kind of message that seems to be running the show. Advertising seems to be the shaper of ideals these days. Long gone are the days of fairy tales that held a message, a moral.

    All of the qualities that you mention don’t really get a look in. And the sad thing is that whilst people chase these empty dreams, they will feel empty. How many self help books get sold on the basis of people looking for that ‘something missing’ in their life? Perhaps that ‘something missing’ is our connection with one another.

    • But aren’t we more intelligent than being waylaid by advertising and false promises? Can’t we just look within to see the shallowness, the hollowness of all these messages? We have lost touch with ourselves … and in turn with others.

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