“Do you know what shameless thought just bullied its way into my consciousness?
That I deserve you,
that I deserve to know you and to communicate with you,
that I deserve to have all this happening.
What have I done to merit this ?
I don’t believe in the merit system.
I Am That I Am.
No, I will not hurt you.”
~Written by Eldridge Cleaver~
This existence… it is dynamic, in simplest terms. Because it is so immense there are a million different perspectives on it, just as there are so many different experiences occurring simultaneously. And in this simultaneous nature of life, these million opinions are connected, they influence each other, even if sometimes in not-so-obvious ways.
These connections are present in all human interactions, whether between millions, hundreds, or two.
For the purpose of this post, let’s focus on the TWO.
Who you are is solid. Your core traits and talents. The part that can change is your reaction to things. The ways you react to things are based on your experiences, and as I said above, the sheer number of experiences creates our unique combination of responses and reactions, that to us seem totally reasonable, but may or may not make sense to someone else.
This space is where the potential for great love exists. In the space where we DON’T understand.
In many cases, people run from what they don’t understand, and sometimes that’s exactly what you should do. If someone is violent or hateful or bitter toward you, there’s no need to do what I am about to describe, because those who are violent or hateful or bitter have issues they need to resolve from their past that need to be handled BEFORE they connect with anyone else. There is NOTHING IN YOU that can fix them. They have to do it themselves. And if you stay with them, YOU WILL JOIN their misery. Back away.
BUT WHAT ABOUT THE REST OF US? Those who are quirky, but not beyond the acceptance of love. The space where we can develop great love exists.
First, where many people have gone wrong is believing that the differences are reason to avoid connection. “Well he/she doesn’t react the way I do when they are nervous” or “he/she interacts differently with their family than I do.” and a million other possible areas of difference.
I’m convinced that the reason so many people today remain single for so many more years than in the past is, they MISS OUT on one of the GREATEST things about love.
THE CHANCE TO LEARN
That is where the connection exists. It’s an outward CURIOSITY. Learning how the other person processes events, where and what shaped their reactions, their moods, their interests. LEARN ABOUT EACH OTHER’S PATHS. Learn about where you are today, and where you’d like to move toward next.
and NEXT to ACCEPT them as they are. to LOVE the masterpiece that they are. Great artists know that every work did not go as perfectly planned. Some of the brushstrokes were unexpected. “The Starry Night,” the walls of the Pyramid at Giza, and the beautiful formation of your lover, are all the more beautiful because they couldn’t be perfectly predicted.
LOVE that. Embrace it. Appreciate it. Learn it and nurture all of your lover.
GREAT LOVE IS THE CONNECTION AT THE POINT WHERE LEARNING IS POSSIBLE.
In educational psychology, this is called the “zone of proximal development.” It’s the next area that the “student” is ready to develop into. Their past knowledge has prepared them for what comes next in the “course.”
See each other as a BEAUTIFUL OPPORTUNITY to learn, to share, to love, cry, laugh, develop, and somewhere along the journey you’ll find that the GREATEST LOVE STORY was right there the whole time. You just had to be willing TO LEARN.
But FIRST, you have to believe that YOU DESERVE IT.
Go back to the top, read the excerpt from Eldridge again and meditate on this:
“You deserve that connection.”