Sunday, May 19, 2013

Love: At Least I Know What It's Not

It’s on my heart.  That’s not a typo.  Back when I used to go to church, I would hear this phrase a lot:  “This is on my heart.”  “Jesus put this on my heart.”  It’s the action you’re not doing that, until you start doing it, will haunt you and make you lose sleep.  It’s the siren blaring in your head when you pass someone you know is hurting.  They don’t have a bruise on them, but you know it’s there.  You know you can help.  If I knew what I had to do I’d have done it ages ago and not be the mess I am right now.  But I don’t have a duty on my heart.  The only thing I hear is “love.” 
That’s kind of sick, to have such a blanket term laid on me.  I wonder if I’m that dried up inside to need so much work.  I mean it.  Love?  Can anyone really label that?  Where do I even start?  Damn.  Really, God?  Really?

At Least I Know What It's Not.
My head hurts from all this thinking.  I’ve been struggling to get my thoughts together on this, and now I see why Love is on my heart so much.  I’ve have no freaking clue about it, despite the changes I've tried to make.  Save for my daughter, I don’t even know if I really mean it when I tell someone I love them.  All I know is that different people cause different feelings in me.  Not necessarily good or bad, just different.
When I decided to pick my heart apart on the internet, I didn’t think it would be so hard to come up with a Point A.  Well, a week later, I stumbled onto something that I think is a good place to start, though it’s not much of a breakthrough in hindsight.  I guess if I’m being real with you, and confusion is what I feel right now, then confusion will have to do.
I don’t understand what love is.  Agreed.  But at least I have enough painful memories to know what love isn’t.  So I started there. 
Love Isn't:  sex, stipulations, perishable, promises, potential, romance
Then I got to thinking about what I do to show love to others, with mixed results. 
Love Might Be: good deeds, crying shoulder, friendship, spending time, 24/7 on-call.
But that's where I'd get so frustrated, I had to put my head in my lap.  How can I be doing these things an not get what I'm looking for in return? 
That’s when the answer hit me.  It came in an open-palm/backhand combo and woke me right the hell up.
I had no clue back in April that something I bragged about was actually my worst habit.   I said that I turn my inner frustration into acts of kindness.  I thought it was the thing to do, until I really thought about it.  Basically, the worse I feel about myself, the better I’ll treat someone else.
What kind of mess is that?
Love is the intent, not the action.
Oh.  Well, duh.  Who wants to cry on a fake friend’s shoulder?  Who wants to sleep with someone who is already planning his next conquest before he even kisses you goodbye? 
Who wants love from a woman who is only doing what she does to distract herself? 
And by the way, do I love myself?
Duh, indeed.  Might help if I showed myself some of this awesome attention...and stop ignoring the obvious.   It's been a crazy year and all I need is to hug myself for a minute.
So now I get why my garden hasn’t grown.  I’ve done all the watering, the weeding, plenty of fertilizing, too, apparently.  Never bothered to plant a seed though. 
Bear with me on this, please…I hear there’s a world of seeds to choose from.  Now I have to find mine in that pile…
...and make legible sense of it.