This Thing Called Love

For two mother loving long years, I tried to write a love story.

This is something I subconsciously avoided since I started writing. And as it is with one’s fears, to overcome it, I had to start at why.

Only I didn’t because…

One freezing night, feeling delusional and inspired; I switched on my computer and decided to ‘get to work!’. And instead of the sweet juices of love pouring from my fingertips on to the screen… all I could think of was the exact type of cup of tea that should accompany such a night. Mind you, I already had a cup of tea in front of me.

Thus the procrastination began until the wee hours of the morning…


And at the crack of dawn, eyes twitching from exhaustion and coffee induced palpitation (I switched drinks), I realized why I could not write about love. It is too freaking difficult to be honest and therefore, vulnerable in matters of love. To prove my point, after two years, all I have to show for my effort are four pages of script.

I used to attend a meeting of artists and poets, let’s call it PASS. And I quit going after the third meeting. Every time I got home from the meeting, I’d spend the night having hot flashes and cringing from BAD  love poems. I complained relentlessly until my long-suffering Sister snapped and said, “You either shut up or stop going”.  So I stopped going.

In my defense, all the poets at PASS in their ode to Love, said “your eyes are like the moon and your smile is like the sun”. And there is just so much of that my already weary soul could take. But now that I have tried my hands at writing on love, I almost feel the need to find them and apologize.

From the beginning of time, I feel love has been presented to us as a facade, and never truly been defined. It is just an ineffable description of… with no better way to say it than how my science based mind can express it; the success of love has been made to feel like load over effort. In a way that seems to mean, one factor has to be largely inversely proportional to the other. This factor usually is effort. Therefore it feels like to succeed at love one needs to put in huge amounts of effort. This is the formula for the Mechanical Advantage required for work.   Ultimately it takes work to errr… make love work.


For those Artist and Creatives, I lost in the preceding paragraph, welcome back! No more digressions, I promise.

Talking about Artists, the people who have done a better job at talking about love (my personal opinion) are the Musicians. Some of them have been able to roll out anguish, despair, passion and hope into timeless love classics like Bob Dylan’s ‘Make you feel my love’. Mostly the rockers and indie musicians have been so open and honest. Some with the help of pure talent while others guided by sheer luck (ahem, drugs).

What then is love? Does it have a definition that can effectively be worked into our consciousness as an aid or a guide? So we collectively know what we mean when we say, “I love you”?.

I have searched and oh boy, I have searched; no book, document (holy, philosophical, or good ol’ ancient text) seems to be able to define it. All I have found is a working instruction of what love does and what it is able to accomplish.


I have also asked many people what they think love can be defined as, and that was an education in itself. It was disappointing and frankly frightening to note the avoidance of many to dig deeper for themselves about what love is beyond what has been written by somebody else about it. On the flip side, quite heartening was it to find fellow explorers who had so much to share.

Therefore I have finally (and I will confess its only recently) come up with my own personal definition of love. Love for me, is the high value that I accord to a person or a thing; simple. This, along with my Christian mandate and values on love is to be understood the more I live, love and discover the true place of love in life.

The truth is there are dark and light places love takes us to, especially in a relationship.  Most of us are very afraid to take that journey. We escape the dark and exaggerate the light. A minuscule few have dug into both places and found ways of expressing their discoveries and sharing it with the world.

I believe there is what love is and then, there is how love is, two notions I am trying to reconcile. I may just be digging unnecessarily deep into this, something the right kind of psychologist might call an avoidance issue. But what ever the case is, it is a journey I am on… and at least He will have the full picture of what I have to give.

What is your definition of love? I want to know.


Images via Flickr


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