What is one to do after the realization that there is no escape from love?
I think I have finally come to understand this business of true love. I mean truly blinding, back-breaking, undeniable love; love that cannot be shaken. True love is not defined by the happiness you feel around a person, or by the things you do together.
True love is defined by the steadfastness of their presence in your heart. It’s defined by the ache that won’t recede after a breakup, the endless yearning for that person when they are not close, the tireless pursuit your heart makes to be with that person. It’s defined by the solemn understanding and acceptance that they will never leave your heart, regardless of how they treat you. True love is accepting that one person has immense power over you, and that their responsibility with that power is entirely out of your control.
When you are truly in love with someone, there is no way out.
When you accept that true love is inescapable, you can learn to live with it. You can learn to compartmentalize it and store it away. You can learn to give yourself to other lovers and be happy with them, even though they cannot access that same deep well of feeling and passion. Absorbing the fact that your true love was never realized and probably will never be is the only way to live happily afterwards. But the fantasy of its realization will always lurk inside of you, somewhere. It will appear in your dreams when you least expect it. You will vividly remember that person’s face, and for an instant you will remember just how deeply they are ingrained in the fabric of your heart.
There comes a point where the experience of true love overcomes the experience of the actual person. That is, experiencing the idea and conceptualization of the person as opposed to the actual person.
When you have not seen someone for such a long time, you are unsure whether it is your love for the person or your love for the idea of the person that is affecting you. At this point, the person in question becomes more akin to a historical figure; a myth. It becomes a story that you told and continue to tell your heart, and there’s no way to undo the story because there was and is no chance of realizing the love you allegedly have for this person.
Some might call this tragic. And perhaps it is. But profound passion is not limited to what we feel for romantic partners. It can also be felt for ourselves, for a trade, for a cause, and for the other people in our lives that are genuinely involved and care about us.
If you have found solace in some or all of those things, you will have lived a happier life than most people in the world can achieve.