I am one that is intrigued by the abstract. Although I am a very logical person and solve my problems in such ways, I prefer to study things that essentially do not make sense. While higher education is, in large part dedicated, to the teaching of concrete concepts, the things that aren’t concrete are far more engulfing in our lives. For example, faith is something people experience on a daily basis but yet no one knows what it means to have it. For decades philosophers have been researching and trying to explain the phenomenon. They found that to experience such a phenomenon, one must ascend and have somewhat of an out of body experience. Is it this true of enigmatic things? These are all the things that went through my head as I was approaching this topic of love. How am I supposed to define love if philosophers and intellects far more superior than I couldn’t; what gives me the right?
Prior to a few years ago, I looked at love solely from an objective standpoint because I myself had never been in love. I saw love through my family, friends and the media. I could never tell you how I felt, only what I thought. Now that I have experienced love, I can use myself as my greatest tool. This is perfect! I have my thoughts and feelings down to a science so finding out what love is should be easy. I started my analysis of love by surveying a pool of college students by asking them to provide me with one word that expressed what love meant to them. I felt this would narrow down my search to a few key terms to choose from. I figured of the top received answers, one must be the definition of love. Trustworthy. Selflessness. Loyalty. Crazy. Timeless. Unconditional. What is the key to this thing called love?
I met Love a year ago, unexpectedly of course. We didn’t really get along much over the years. When Love went right, I went left. I tried to meet Love several times through several people and we’d exchange glances but were never formally introduced. I had heard about this cat Love through testimonies of others and my personal definition of love derived from a cross between reality and movies. This is how it is vs. this is how it should be. Throughout my relationships, I always held my fairytale “This is how it should be.” standard. I treated my guys as such as well. After time passed and that “movie love” was never achieved; I’d move on. Seeing as though I was the only one out my friends, probably my entire high school, that still hadn’t experienced this “real love”; I began to think that it was my fault. Just like those who were surveyed, I too measured potential mates to those standards. Maybe I was asking for too much or had way too many expectations. Maybe movies are just what they are, fake.
I was wrong. Love slowly crept into my bloodstream and plagued me day by day. By the time that I had realized what Love was doing, I was already infected. I thought to myself, “How did this happen?” I didn’t administer my test to see if this guy was right or not! Does this mean that he has all of the qualities or is my heart confused? I need answers! Am I finally going to meet Love or are we just passing by again? Love was like the bright light at the end of the tunnel and all that was missing was a train conductor to lead me to it. Well this conductor came in the form of an old friend, we’ll call him Loverboy. Loverboy and I had expressed interest in our juvenile high school years but decided that it’d be better to remain friends. Years later when we reunited at the same university, our proposal to remain friends was still intact. Little did we know Cupid had already had a plan in motion for us. Somehow I think there was a divine force controlling our lives. Everything that developed between us was a matter of coincidence. Nothing was ever planned, things just happened. Group hangouts slowly became dates with just the two of us. Time passed and just like that, love was my new disease and Loverboy was the administrator.
I was so smitten with my need for this person and his equal need for me. If anything was needed Loverboy would do his best to supply and vice versa. Even the littlest things unknowingly played such a huge a role. Whether it ranged from “Help me study.” to “Buy me these shoes!” the sacrificial ways of the both of us caused a dynamic of trust and loyalty. All the while I used to search and test for these qualities, they in fact disclosed themselves. This didn’t make any sense at all! How did he pass a test that hasn’t even been given? It was as if he had the cheat codes suited to my heart. He did everything, by essentially doing nothing at all.
It was a regular day when I finally came to grips that I had fallen in love. Something about our interactions was different. Not different as in strange but different as in heightened. Everything that I might have slightly felt before came this day with ten times the intensity. I laid there looking up to the ceiling allowing the sun rays from the window to cast shadows that I could play with and the simplest thing happened. Loverboy said “Kierra!” in the subtlest tone, simply to get my attention, and it hit me. I looked over at him and I stared in a daze as my body filled with vibrations. Sort of like butterflies but a herd of them, throughout my entire body. My flesh grew weak and simultaneously I was drawn to him like no other. All aboard! I had made it to the end of the tunnel. It wasn’t until here that I walked over to Love and said “Hello sir, nice to finally meet you.” It was now that I knew that anything before that I had experienced couldn’t hold a candle to love. Maybe the philosophers were right. To be in love you have to have this out of body experience because I definitely felt like those butterflies had helped me take flight. It is like I ascended to this intense feeling realm, Loverboy and I of course. Wanting to see you became wanting to be with you. Wanting to kiss you became wanting to hold you. Wanting you became needing you. Liking you became loving you. You became me. We became us.
Us became everything. At this point we’ve been officially dating for a few months but it feels like years! Ironically enough, I had known him for years but never on the level of understanding as I do now. Days turned to weeks and seasons changed but we didn’t. It was every day was like we first met. Every time I’d see him or hear him speak, I’d be reminded of how much in love I am. Love was fresh. I couldn’t understand how people got tired or bored of their significant other. It may seem that our measly eight months at the time were incomparable to two to three years but I think it was very so much when eight months felt like eight minutes! Love was timeless. Not only in the sense that it lasts forever but also that there are no time limits on love. Love was being able to spend excessive time with this person and only wanting to be closer. Loverboy and I could literally spend seventy-two straight hours together only to part for minor things such as class or work. It got to the point where anytime that wasn’t spent with him was slow. I could attend class for an hour and feel the same amount of time past as if I stayed with him for two days. Love cannot be bound, certainly not by time.
You can never really notice how time passes when you’re occupied. Part of the reason that love is so timeless is because love is a crazy adventure. I could always count on Loverboy for constantly stimulating me. First off, get your mind out of the gutter. I mean stimulate as in keeping my senses heightened. I was constantly drawn to Loverboy because he in himself was an adventure. Constantly I could hear, see and touch him or things relative to him to be entertained. He could always make me laugh at any given moment, even when I wanted to cry. I hated that. Adversely, just as he could make me laugh, he could make me cry. I hated that too, but I still loved it. I still loved him. Loverboy had my emotions on a remote and could activate them at his will and vice versa. I knew exactly what buttons to push to get certain reactions and I used them when needed. There was a mutual acknowledgement of the power we each had over one another and we both relinquished and accepted each other’s. Loving someone who has the power to make you hate them has to be the ultimate state of vulnerability and honor. Love is such a paradox but one that we all accept, crazy right?
Love is crazy, trustworthy, selfless, loyal, crazy, timeless and unconditional. Love is everything but it is effortless. I remember Loverboy and I would talk for hours on things we’d agree and disagree on. Even in our disagreements we were synchronized. Love was harmonious. Problems were rarely a problem because we complimented each other’s personalities so well. “Babe, we just work.” I can’t count how many times Loverboy said this to me. Just works? Love just works? That’s it. Love is not about measuring how much of a quality one person has. Love is not about testing and evaluating. Love is a contradiction that cannot be strategized nor planned. It is not like baking a cake. You can’t manipulate ingredients to get the big picture on the box. Love will come to you at the most unexpected time and it will be beautiful. Love is powerful. When true love comes your way, you’ll notice that your journey required a lot less work than previous relations. True love will flow and encompass all the things you were hoping for and more. It’ll change “This is how it should be.” to “This is how it is.” and soon you’ll start to feel like a movie star because your life is an exact model of a romantic comedy starring Matthew McConaughey. Your search for love becomes your journey through it and you’ll discover that Love cannot be probed. Love is what it is. Love just works.