A friend told me recently that he had loved, truly loved, once in his life and he was badly hurt. He has never opened up his heart to anyone else again because, consciously or sub-consciously he fears that pain. I can understand; the pain of losing someone you love is like nothing else, it eats away at you every moment that you are awake and invades your dreams when you are asleep. Surely it is in the nature of all human beings to do what they can to protect themselves from pain but, by doing so, aren’t we also shielding ourselves from love at the same time?
Buddha said “Love is a gift of one’s inner most soul to another so both can be whole”
If we are not prepared to risk pain from love, we are also not prepared to open ourselves to the pleasure that it can bring and, like this, can we ever be truly whole? This is not to say that we cannot survive without or be completely reliant upon another person for our own happiness. Many people are single or widowed or divorced and quite happy in that state but very few people live in complete solitude because we all crave contact, whether emotional, intellectual or physical, with others.
I suppose that the way to survive the pain that can be inflicted from loving another is to love oneself first. People in love often say things to wound the object of their love when they’re in a bad mood or having a bad day but the relationship can only really be damaged if the one on the receiving end chooses to believe that there is truth in what has been said.
Loving oneself doesn’t seem to be a popular concept these days; we seem to live in a society where taking care of ourselves and our desires is seen as selfish – how did that happen? Unfortunately, if we deny ourselves and truly believe that others are more worthy of love than we are then we will be forever caught in a vicious circle. If we don’t believe that we are worthy of love then why should anyone else? And if no-one loves us how can we believe that we are worthy of it? Whatever is going on in your life, if you have a relationship or not, if you are looking for one or not, spend some time learning to love yourself and the rest will follow.
I have loved. Breathtaking, heart-stopping, adrenaline filled, happy fit to burst loved and I l lost but I don’t regret a single second and would do it all again without question if I had the chance. I believe it is better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all……..