Friends come and go but the people that are there with you from the start to the finish are the people you were surrounded by from birth; the people you share your safe space with, your home.
The bond and love within a family and between family members is second to none.
We go through so many ups and downs in life, but only really appreciate the value of our family when we’re stuck, at a point of no return and then realise; “friends” can’t help me this time.
In life, most times we take the love that bonds our family together for granted, mostly because it doesn’t feel like the "everyday love" that we come across when we meet strangers that we take a shine to.
Unlucky for us, no one remembers being given birth to and falling in love with the first people we meet in the world. By the time we begin to understand life, we would have already learnt how to coexist with them, the family dynamics are already well established and we tend to forget that love is the basis of it all.
The relationship has already been created and we didn’t even have to try.
Skip forward a few years later and we start to experience the influences of the world. We meet people, we try, fail and also succeed at making friends. We start to learn that creating your own life and your own path requires effort, learning, failure, rejection…all leading to eventually starting to get the hang of it.
…then we meet someone, a stranger, who’s presence somehow sparks a very intense, uncomfortable and unignorably satisfying feeling within you…and you have no clue what to do.
What really is love anyway?
It’s one of those words that we use so often that we automatically feel as though we know what it is, like the back of our hands. Each one of us has our own definition of what love is, many definitions similar to each other; sometimes enviable, sometimes bizarre.
To start at the basics, the dictionary defines love as a strong feeling of affection; affection being a gentle feeling of fondness or liking (and might I add, a very recognisable one at that).
...it’s just a feeling.
Unfortunately, there’s nowhere in the dictionary where it teaches you how to love or what to do with this feeling of affection when it hits.
Love can be very selfish.
You are the only one that matters and, once the feeling has been professed from one to another, you start to expect and sometimes forget to give...or sometimes give and expect the "return on investment".
It becomes transactional, a struggle to please and impress.
It starts surreal and whimsical, it ends jealous and enraged.
Essentially, when this love feeling hits us, we really don't know how to act.
So when do you learn how to love?
The relationship that we have with our family members determines how you interact with and the overall relationship you have with the person that you label as the love of your life.
He might protect you like your brother would.
She might push you to believe in yourself like your sister would.
You might annoy each other just as much or even more than your sibling would.
You might learn to accept all the versions of each other and coexist…just the way it was at home before you had to go out and face the chaotic world.
However, accepting the extreme complexity of the concept of love; no one really gets it right.
At least, you and I try.
We all try.
One thing I want to know is, what does love mean to you?
Leave a comment, let’s start a conversation…