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The idea of love

THE ASIAN AGE. | NISHA JAMVWAL
Published : Jun 28, 2017, 12:56 am IST
Updated : Jun 28, 2017, 12:56 am IST

The most gratifying and happy relationships happen when we stumble into something without hankering for it with someidealistic storybook notion.

Still from Valentine’s Day
 Still from Valentine’s Day

Are people just in love with the idea of love? Or is it that they are literally hunting for a person to quickly fall in love, and layering the first person they meet with attributes they wish to perceive? Or is it a case of wishful projection?  

A fallout of loneliness in our times and the social network culture of doing things in isolation may also be one of the causes of this craving for companionship. In the days of joint families and many kids, one never had as many people craving company as much as in the now. Maybe with the fast-growing epidemic of DINKs i.e., double income no kids, and the age bar of marriage going higher and higher, people want their independence and yet crave the frolic of a partner and kids. So what is the answer? Fall in love without the encumbrances of marriage and kids.  

When a girl or a guy go through feeling or experience the sense of emptiness which comes from a lack of purpose — they yearn for something to complete that lacuna. On the other hand, when a person has past ravages of self-esteem or insecurities, the need to be healed or desired, increases. To that, I’d say, it is more often than not the perfect setting for disaster. Where you are about to crash land into a scenario of expectations and those preconceived notions of believing that love will complete you and make you feel realised and fulfilled... the reality hits  you to show how it’s quite the opposite. 

A new relationship comes with rough edges and adjustments of its own. I find that the most gratifying and happy relationships happen when we stumble into something without hankering for it with idealistic storybook notions. Suddenly and unexpectedly you meet someone, become friends first and then realise that you must spend your years together in companionship, friendship, humour and other happy experiences. You are fulfilled within yourself and not filling some hole within you. You are not looking for love as a solution to life’s challenges or an escape because you have your sense of self intact within yourself and have an occupation aside of ‘project love’. There are no fanciful prejudices and biases about what love would feel like and how the lover should behave. 

Spontaneity, friendship, bonding, similar value systems and voila, you have love without it being this ‘thing’ so embodied with heavy expectations and performance pressure.  

When you find yourself hankering for this lofty thing called ‘love’ and when you are all about being made to feel special when you are waiting to feel on top of the world and your partner has to make this happen magically — it is more about the performance of a circus seal than love.  

Nearly like a test, he or she must pass because you read it in a book or see it in a movie and want that kind of love. And if he does not pass the test of your pre-formatted picture of perfect imagination, there comes the beginning of the bitterness and recriminations. Not a spontaneous distinct equation where every day is looked forward to for those unique new feelings that come in unexpected relationships.  

Trying to fit something into the wrong size of the body is pretty much what describes a relationship where the desire to be loved is more important than the human being you believe you are in love with. You just carry on with a series of tests and hopes where you’re waiting for your partner to be the person you had imagined he or she should be and if they don’t deliver, there are those series of disappointed arguments and rifts just like a misfit dovetailing where a piece of furniture that was meant to be beautiful falls apart.

The thing to do is to go about making your own life work for you, becoming what you’d love yourself to be, and then the love bug just bites you where you are in a happy whirlwind of life, work, self-fulfillment and you are asset to the partner to whose life you can contribute as much as he or she would to yours. 

The writer is a columnist, designer and brand consultant. Mail her at nishajamvwal@gmail.com 

Tags: companionship, friendship