There are many theories floating around trying to figure out the reason behind the human epidemic I like to refer to as the, “I want what I can’t have” syndrome.
For me, it was never about the thrill of the chase. I’m not much of a runner, so I definitely was not interested in going after anyone. No, for me it was more about the story. I believe anything is worth doing for the sake of the story.
Sometimes people come into our lives that are just so incredibly amazing that they pull at our heart strings, but for one reason or another they are not meant for us. They are simply our present, but not our future. I always knew when things weren’t going to last, but my heart has no logic for who it chooses to love. No reason why. Its only function is to love. My heart always convinced my mind to stay, love them anyway, enjoy their company, and to see the story through.
There is something romantic about knowing it must end. F. Scott Fitzgerald would have agreed, “I’m as romantic as you are…the sentimental person thinks things will last, the romantic person has a desperate confidence that it won’t.” It is like finding out you only have a year to live. If somebody told me I only had a year to live, I would not hand them a gun and say, “End it now.” I would consume life. Enjoy every single day of my time on earth until my last breath.
Knowing I would not be with someone forever only intensified my need to be with them, not forever, but right now. I wanted to kiss them and touch them and experience them. Love them fiercely.
I used to think commitment guaranteed forever, but it doesn’t. Nothing in life is guaranteed. No one can promise you forever even if they intend it. In a sense, an end brought me more security.
Maybe they are not here for the long haul. For the trip down the aisle. Or even the day after tomorrow, but right now they are here and right now is instantly gratifying. “Forever,” has no place in a constantly changing world.
Loving those I could not have taught me a lot about love and even life. I learned that there was strength in letting go, more so than holding on. I learned to stop trying to keep human beings. To love without wanting to possess, because I did not need to have anyone.
I learned that the end of a relationship was not the end of my world.
I know you may be thinking that I don’t know any better, that I may have not experienced “real” love yet, but I did have a love I thought would be my “one.” He had chosen me, and me him. I had believed we would be together forever like a school girl sketching hearts in to tattered notebooks declaring “4ever” in hopeful innocence. And when it did end, it nearly destroyed me. I hung on to the fragments of the broken relationship until I was blue in the face consumed with anxiety, as if it was my last chance to ever feel love.
After some time I finally let go and realized it did not kill me nor turn my heart bitter and cold. Where there is potential for love the heart keeps on going. It will love who it loves even if I don’t want it to, even if it will have to end. It will keep loving after that too. It is a true testament of how much love we are capable of.
So, when I met someone, even if I knew I couldn’t have them forever I enjoyed the time we had together. I loved them for the moments that we shared and the joy that they brought me and it was the memories that I kept.
Maybe it’s not this idea of love I had as a little girl, this notion of the happily ever after. But it is just as beautiful of a story.
I got kissed so hard I forgot I had a face, I clasped my hands around a thick waist as we rode a motorcycle alongside the sunset, I climbed to the highest peak of the world to watch the sunrise illuminate the city, I ran naked under the glimmering moon as the freezing ocean crashed on my skin and shocked my body awake and yeah… I had mind-blowing sex.
Sure, it hurt when it ended, I don’t like to see things end, but every story must end that does not mean you should not enjoy the journey.
Someday I will choose to love someone who chooses to love me one day at a time and before we know it we have spent our whole lives together, and only in death will we part. Until then my heart will love who it loves, even if I can’t have them forever.
Bonus: The Qualities to look for in a Life-mate.
Apprentice Editor: Kathryn Muyskens / Editor: Catherine Monkman
Photo: Unsplash/Raj Eiamworakul