I love you not only for who you are, but for what I am when I am with you. I love you not only for what you have made of yourself, but for what you are making of me. I love you for the part of me you bring out.
Not that I follow or read Elizabeth Barrett Browning on any regular basis…I’m familiar with Victorian poetry as much as quantum physics….as fate would have it, breezing through my Twitter stream this morning, there she was. And I listened.
Try as I might, my cynism wanes when it comes to love. I can’t help it. Well, perhaps I choose to not help it, preferring to simply love. My downfall…loving.
Why does one fall out of love after living with someone so many years? How does this happen? Are expectations so grand we allow this or does it just happen? I loved him, still love him. Love does not dissipate as such.
And yet, and yet, marriage, it’s limits, the institution itself, I was not able to love as I wished. Boundaries are elusive and get me into trouble. Loving is not troubling, it is the amount of love I give to others. I often wonder if I’ll ever be capable of loving one man at a time. I write this with great sincerity. STBX says I’ll never be alone, that “there will always be someone in the wings”. His assumption, while not far from the truth, is said with a hint of disdain, envy, woefulness. He is a good man. He loves as he loves, as we all do. There are no wrong or right ways to love, is there?
I have learned much about love this past year; its nuances, limits, flavors, joys, sorrowfulness and continual mysteries. I am learning to let love just be. It is not easy. Culture dictates we love one person at a time: thus my disconnect.
For now, I love more than one. I love several. Each has their place in my heart. It is bigger than me. I tire of fighting it, choosing to allow it to envelop as she pleases, never a desire to hurt others, only to love as long as they choose to receive it.