I have been thinking a lot lately about why we as human beings have such an overwhelming need to connect with others, to love and be loved by someone else, sometimes at great expense to ourselves in the process. What does it all mean? What IS love anyway, and why is such a mercurial emotion so important to our psyches, to our souls, to our very life forces? Where does the driving force come from, other than from the obvious instinctual need to preserve the species? In the human race, this need seems to have evolved into something more, something deeper, something that extends beyond the boundaries of a human “animal.” Even beyond the more practical needs of protecting or supporting one another.
Is it possible that love is nature’s way of attempting to control this strange evolving race of out-of-control beings? Love can make human beings weak. Love can make human beings destroy each other. Destroy themselves. But if this COULD be the case, perhaps nature’s plan backfired in a way. Because love can also make us stronger, love can inspire us to reach higher, and love can save us.
So where else could this love have come from? Is it a natural side-effect of an evolving intelligence? We really have no way of knowing, since we have never met any other beings who experience this strange phenomenon. Could it be nothing more than an instinct designed to further the survival of the species? Something that came about to make sure that, no matter how badly we are hurt or frightened, we will always seek out the company of SOMEONE else…even when we are most alone.
Yet sometimes it’s that very love that makes us feel so alone. Love is capable of inspiring great art, music, poetry, vision, capable of inspiring us to be better than we ever have been, to “climb every mountain,” to put someone else first. But at the same time that self-same love is capable of evoking the greatest despair, loneliness, heartbreak, selfishness, hysteria and melancholy. How could this be?
The only way to overcome the negative feelings brought about by this love emotion is for us to love OURSELVES. We will still hurt, we will still FEEL, we can still be broken…but if we love OURSELVES we can NEVER be shattered. And maybe that IS what love is really supposed to be about. Loving ourselves. Loving ourselves enough to be ABLE to love another person in the way that they want to be loved. And if two people who love themselves love each other…well, isn’t that what all the best love stories are about?
I am still struggling. I still don’t love myself. But I like myself sometimes. It’s a start. And for the first time in my life, I actually believe that I WILL love myself one day. That I will be able to define my self-worth not by how others see me, but by how I see myself. To not HAVE to hear him tell me “I love you” in order to feel loved. Because I will love myself and him enough to be able to wait until he is ready to say it because he wants to, and not because I want to hear it. And if he never wants to…well, it will hurt, but I will be all right. I will go on. Life will go on. Love will go on.
On a side note, I realized the other day that an integral part of my journal has been missing while I have found myself in that deep dark hole I so recently climbed out of. I used to put affirmations on every post to help myself and others heal. I want to start putting those back on, if people enjoy them. I know I do. 🙂
Today’s Affirmation:
Today, I celebrate all that I have accomplished in my life. I acknowledge that I am an ever evolving creation of life.
– Pamela J. Leavey

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Categories: Miscellany


Phira · December 22, 2002 at 11:11 am

Just for today…
I will not just love myself, but LIKE who I see in the mirror…

j. brotherlove · December 22, 2002 at 2:00 pm

What a beautiful, insightful posts, Tricia. I am in a similar space. I feel like I am close to loving myself. But, there are still a few obstacles. Why is that?
I am also in a spiritual transition, wishing to be more pure, more proactive in my future. I feel when I am closer to my “transformation”, I will understand myself better and be able to love myself more.

Daphne · December 22, 2002 at 7:24 pm

{{{ Tricia }}}
Well said.

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