I log into the private Facebook group intended to celebrate the modern curiosity of falling in love via cyberspace.
Yet in this place where love and romance is celebrated, anger is my constant companion. The discussions about love trigger strong negative emotions.
I scold myself for my reaction.
I am the woman who believes that the meaning of life is the connections we make with other people and here I am pulling away from those who are meant to be the most loving of all.
Some of these people who believe love should last forever, that love is beyond the physical and who champion tradition irritate me beyond what is rational.
In this microcosm of my real world, I wonder why I can’t be loving with everyone. It consumes my thoughts.
It is the one thing that causes me the most pain about my marriage. If I could find a way to love myself with all my failings and flaws, why was I never able to love my husband (perhaps when he needed it the most).
My answer to this question makes me flicker and fade into the world between black and white. It’s a world I’ve shied away from. It makes me feel morally ambiguous – I’m a defender of love without the capacity to show it to all (wo)men.
Curiously, Carmen’s comment yesterday brought up my feelings about connection and disconnection again. You see, for better or for worse, I interpret love as my ability to connect with another person.
Some people I warm to immediately, and some take more time, but where there is commonality I feel a deep connection. It’s like some people are awake and alive. And sadly, some are asleep.
When people slumber in a life filled with prescribed rules and conditioning, I cannot connect. When I cannot connect, I find it impossible to love.
The conditioning that scrapes against my tender skin is the belief that sexual intimacy is either not important or inferior to the love of an omnipotent (and demanding) God. Although I will myself to love/connect with these people, my differences rather than my similarities emerge in stark contrast.
It’s as though I am betraying the love in my life that I hold most sacred by sharing it with those who don’t hold my kind of love in high regard.
So, here I am, loving only those that agree with me and speaking about unconditional love when the love I give lives firmly within conditions.
I cannot force myself to connect with a person who speaks of passion being ‘of the flesh’ no more than I could force myself to love the man I was married to.
And so I fail as a loving creature; unable to embrace the world with all its differences.
Perhaps it’s because I’m still growing.
Perhaps it’s because I’m imperfect.
Or perhaps it’s just the way it is … for now …