Most of us think we love but we don’t. Many people claim that they love but yet they do not. Fall in trouble or do something wrong and see how it changes, how they change. There is this unofficial school of thought of “I love you but” meaning I love you for as long as you serve my interests. I love you for as long as you please me, humour me or feed me. At any given time I no longer get any of that from you then that is the end. I love you but…
And so this brings to question the conditions we attach to love. Love has so much more depth than us trying to condition it and it can never be a selfish act. What is the essence of love if it cannot be shared with others? And if it is to be shared with others, will we limit its course only to those we deem perfect? Surely we all deserve love even with our imperfections.
Earlier on this week, I was watching The Red Table Talk and on this episode, Jada and Will Smith were the guests of honour. They shared their story with us and as I was listening to them so many things came to play as I came to a realisation that the concept of love is actually even more dynamic than I had ever imagined.
Everyone has a definition of what they think or feel love is and on that basis, they express love to others in a manner which they would prefer to be loved. This approach has not always been the best because the way you love someone could be quite different from how they want to be loved and they might not appreciate your efforts until you demonstrate love in a manner which they understand or relate to and this is where a lot of us find rather difficult. (See my article “Love Languages” for more details)
Will and Jada Smith made me realise that couples find it very challenging to demonstrate or express love to each other, yes, even married ones. You can imagine how two people who have different ideologies and different backgrounds are suddenly expected to become one. It is possible, however, it takes time and effort to develop an understanding. In developing an understanding you are bound to rub each other the wrong way. There will be friction in an attempt to build the connection that you desire but this whole process – however uncomfortable or even sometimes painful- will yield beautiful results. When you come out of it, you would have reached the end and therefore, the beginning. The end in that you would have passed the phase of strive and conflict and turmoil, the teething phase, the phase of getting to know each other and teaching each other how you want to be treated individually and moreover, how best to relate with each other. The beginning would mean a new chapter with no petty squabbles but all spent in actually loving each other “right”.
While we live in a time of “I love you but” secretly we are all low key desiring a love without a but. A love that is not blind but rather says I see your imperfections and I choose to love you anyway.
By Lerato Charlotte Letsoso/GhOne TV | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org