Lessons Learned 2008: Love

Lessons Learned in 2008: Love

I think I have learned some interesting lessons about love in 2008.  Mostly the knowledge that I have collected has come from the observation of others, because the good Lord knows that I have had no opportunity to learn anything through first hand experiences myself.  I’m not sure where my mind was when 2008 first came into being.  I think I was too busy to think about love and relationships.  

I knew a girl, still know a girl, who is absolutely obsessed with the fact that she is single.  It is like her whole reason for being is to have a man in her life, and if she doesn’t have one her life has little meaning.  I feel sorry for her, not because she wants to be in a relationship, but because she is not in one and she can’t seem to wrap her mind around it.

While focusing on the fact that she is single, she is letting other good things in her life go by without a second glance.  Don’t get me wrong, nobody wants to be alone, and it would be nice to be in a relationship, but if you aren’t lucky enough to have that, you have to accept it and move on.  You can’t neglect the rest of your life because one part is lacking.

That is her situation.  For me, it is a strange thing, being single.  Three-hundred sixty-six days of 366 days of 2008, I have lain in bed alone, woken up alone.  I didn’t kiss anybody, touch anybody, or even hold anybody’s hand.  I didn’t even have the prospect of getting involved with someone.  It just wasn’t there.  Ninety-five per cent of those days, I don’t even notice.  But there were a few days when I thought, “There’s got to be something better.”

It’s so funny where your mind goes when you let it wander.  New Year’s Eve night, or New Year’s Day, early in the morning, when I came home from the celebrations down in the Harbour, I was thinking about Shannon and Charles.  Earlier that day, while working on my myspage page, I had been looking at old pictures and I came across the pictures from the baby shower.  I was just saying to myself how jealous I was of Shannon’s happiness.

It is one thing to have material happiness, but it is quite another to actually have someone to share in your joys and sorrows.  That is what she had that I lacked, and you can’t buy that from anywhere.  A man whom I thought loved her and two children to complete her family.  What else could she really ask for besides a million dollars and their own private island to do whatever they want?  I was never pressed about having kids myself, but having some guy around for better or for worse, well, that’s always entertaining.

But what really is love?  Is it a feeling or a fancy?  Why do we love Love when Love seems to hate us?  Now, I am thinking about Shannon and Charles, and I wonder what wrong.  You can never know what is in someone else’s mind.  Two people are always star-crossed, no matter what.  You can be on one page but he can be somewhere else.  How could Charles be so low?  How could he be so selfish?  What else on this earth does he think he can accomplish by his foolish actions?  What else does he think he can get?  Does he really think he can get it any better than what he had at that very moment when he threw it all away?  

Charles has committed the worst grievance imaginable.  Fail to live up to one’s expectations, especially his own.  Not only has he betrayed Shannon in the worst possible way, but he has betrayed all of her friends and her family, even himself.  He is the type of guy that will wake up one morning, Tuesday, March 3rd, 2010 and kick himself in his balls because of what he threw away.  Should Shannon ever take him back, I hope she makes him crawl across broken glass, hot coals and dog shit just so he can kiss her feet, and just when he thinks he has won himself in her good graces again, she kicks him in his teeth.

For me, the street fairy tale romance they seemed to have has been forever tarnished, and I’m greatly disturbed by that.  That is nothing to say for how Shannon may be feeling right now.  When I hear stuff like this, I wonder what is the point.  Why spend an eternity going through the motions with all the losers like Charles and Terry and John in the world?  Go from one scum-sucking, lowlife bastard to the next, suffering from all the disappointments in life.  Crushed hope and broken dreams. While one girl is crying she doesn’t have a man, another one is moving on without hers.  What should I do?

Dare I have any hope for myself?  Should I continue on in the Anti-Love Brigade?  Or should I pick up the sword and try, try, try again?  Quite frankly, I am too exhausted to go through that all again.  The nuisance of just looking for a guy, the insipid dating game, then you fall into that routine where you call yourselves a couple–excuse me, the woman calls herself a couple and the man says, “We’re just friends.”  Then you both wake up one morning, Wednesday, July 7th, 2009 and you say, “I think we should see other people.”

Never in my whole life have I ever had a great love.  There has never been anybody that has lit up the night sky for me.  I’ve never felt like I would die to be in somebody’s space, want to breathe their air, soak up their nearness, wrap myself up in them.  Is that sad?  Or am I sparing myself the eventual heartbreak and grief that always seems to accompany the fruitless quest of love?

What have I learned in 2008 about love and romance?  Simply by watching others I have discovered that I am better off alone.  The few days of the year where I wake up alone and feel frost on my fingertips and a heaviness in my heart are no match for the endless black hole of disappointment, despair and dashed expectations.

Is that bitterness?  Or is it reality?

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