“You can love two people, but you cannot be in love with two people at the same time.” ~ lovequoteideas
I used to believe that the heart was such a loyal creature, it could only love one person at a time, until the day I realized that my own had betrayed me.
Yet, I realize now, if we can love more than one friend or more than one child—then why not more than one lover?
The truth is even now, I can’t quite describe the love that I have felt for these two men.
They are different—in both their roles in my life and their place in my heart.
I didn’t intend to love more than one man at a time–it was a situation that developed under the guise of twilight and lingering smiles.
And honestly, I tried to deny my love for one of them as long as I could until the day reality finally caught up with me and gave me a swift kick in the a$$—I had to finally admit it to myself.
But the truth of the situation, as much as we may love someone—being in love is something quite different.
We can feel love and respect for another individual who is close to us, whom we respect and trust.
But what is the difference that separates loving from actually being in love?
I have done a lot of thinking on this matter, and have spent one too many sleepless nights under the stars with tear tracks down my cheeks, pondering how this situation even came to be.
The truth is, I think I have loved and been in love with both of them.
At different points of my journey and never at the same time.
I can feel the differences between these two types of love, not just in my heart, but in my very being.
The one who I loved was warm and comforting.
He never really challenged me, but did always offer his total acceptance of whatever I brought to the table on any particular day.
He was an amazing constant in my life when everything else seemed chaotic.
Even though our eyes are different colors, for some reason I always saw myself or a piece of home in his eyes.
And still, I think of looking at him and curling up along his side in the make-believe world that we always created where nothing mattered except what was between us.
But the truth is, he isn’t the only one to have claimed a space in my heart.
Because there is another.
One who is a pain in the a$$, who told me years ago that I was in love with him—a ridiculous idea that I laughed at.
This man hasn’t taken it easy on me—he never tells me what I want to hear, but rather what I need to hear.
We are always honest with one another—I have been able to say and do things with him that I was never able to with any one else.
And when I look at him, energy goes right through me—I literally feel a jolt when our eyes meet.
I am more myself with him than anyone else—he brings out a side of me that I never even knew existed. Because of this, I now believe he is the one I have been in love with all along.
He is the only man in years that I have said those tempestuous words to—and while I said it was just as friends, we both knew it was a lie.
The worst part is, I know now that every time things didn’t work out with him, I would run back to the other, but no matter how many times I ran, or how far, I could never really outrun the one I was in love with.
I can’t forget the man I’m in love with—regardless of what tactics I have tried to use.
There are differences in who I love and who I am in love with— it’s not something tangible that I can measure, nor is it in the ease of our relationship.
It’s in the depth of the feelings, and in the quantity of all that can’t be explained. This love continually pulls two people together, who have both spent so much time trying to fight and deny it.
He’s the one who I see fitting into my life—even as unimaginable as I once thought that was.
Unfortunately the saddest part of loving both of these incredible men is that I have also had to say good-bye to both of them.
And it breaks my heart.
It wasn’t my choice—or maybe it was.
Sometimes words are as muddled as the mint at the bottom of our evening mojitos and it becomes hard to remember who decided to end things or who decided to leave first.
When things fell apart, once again, with the man I was in love with—this time I had nowhere to run and nowhere to hide.
And maybe that is when things finally became clear.
I don’t know what the future will hold, and as much as I have tried to forget and move on, I am currently unable to.
I have tried to meet new men, believing that there are many fish there are in the sea—but the more men I meet the more I am reminded of how special these two individuals are.
The more aware I become of the uniqueness of our connections.
So, I find myself with a tender spot for each of them, knowing that neither may ever come back into my life.
But, life has a funny way of surprising us sometimes and of working out exactly the way we never imagined it could.
And so I know, with more certainty each passing day, that no matter what has happened or come before, all it will take is a single hello to start a brand new beginning.
Because sometimes someone comes along who is so good, it is impossible to say goodbye forever.
No matter how far we have run from it.
BONUS: Enlighten your sex life:
Author: Kate Rose
Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock
Photo: flickr/Sean McGrath