Sunday, June 13, 2010
I Just Want to be Loved
What I adore about blogging is that I can have an idea about what to blog about and I can do it any time of the day or night. I'm up way too early this morning after two late nights of dancing tango, but I can't sleep in this morning because I got an idea in my head about a blog theme. The mind, indeed, is a wonder!
I got an email yesterday from a very, very good friend. If you read my post, "Down and Dirty," he is the one who was summarily dismissed from a woman who thought his penis wan'ts what she was quite looking for to satisfy her desires. I beg to differ with her. My friend is/was more than a friend with benefits; my friend is/was a beautiful human being: conscious, sentient, loyal, passionate, supportive. But, lately, he's just looking for love in all the wrong places.
My friend is finding it difficult to adjust to the woman's rejection. He just can't get his "sea legs" back after this setback. I wrote one of my extra long emails back to him about being careful of believing other people's projections. Those projections are negative and self-serving on the part of the the person lashing out. I told him that if he believed that person's projection, he will never hold on to his true sense of being. Instead, he will fill up with toxicity - the toxicity of the person who rejects him, or leaves him, or uses him, or lies to him, or deceives him. This is the second time in a year that my friend has attracted the wrong kind of woman - a woman who doesn't represent the best in him.
Why do we keep repeating the same old negative behavior - in this case, attracting others who are not going to enhance our lives. Because we just want to be loved and we are not conscious about the kind of love we truly want or deserve. In my email back to my friend, I wanted him to see what kind of laudable human being he is, to respect himself more than he does when a woman offers herself to him, to be able to discern when a woman wants to use him and abuse him for a brief moment in his life, and to take stock of what he is truly looking for in a companion. I'm not saying don't explore the possibilities of finding a companion, but it is necessary to keep in perspective the difference between sex/romantic love and spiritual love that is more lasting. We are boomers now; we are rounding out the edges of youth; we are looking at the big picture of who we really want to spend time with. Fleeting sexual encounters whether they last a week or months should be looked at with a jaundiced eye in our 60's.
My friend was a co-enabler for many years in his marriage. Co-dependents just want to be loved. They want to be seen as a lover and supporter of those they love so they can, in turn, be loved back. Their need to be loved is as great as the addict. It doesn't matter to co-enablers that the love that is returned to them is a dependent kind of love, a love that has ties and strings to it, and that fosters the addiction (any kind of addiction or compulsion). My friend has gone through years and years of therapy and men's groups to understand his deeper needs. But right now, he is pretty angry with himself that he fell, yet again, into a situation that has been a variation on a negative theme: I just want to be loved.
When things go wrong in a relationship that involves one falling in love and the other not falling in love, anger sets in. I know my friend is very angry at himself and very angry at the woman. Anger is a symptom of something deeper inside of him. He knows this intuitively and is back to working very hard again to try to understand his compulsion to love.
One way I think to being this healing process is to understand forgiveness: forgiveness of self and forgiveness of the other. Forgiveness is the beginng of opening the heart again to acceptance and surrender of self. In yoga, our practice is heart opening. We focus on the heart chakra, which takes us to a deeper place in our soul, our psyche. Not forgiving self or others creates negativity, toxicity, and more anger until we are rendered unconscious. When we reside in darkness of the mind, we only see shadows of ourselves. They are illusions. We are in Plato's cave. In the allegory of the cave, or the unconscious, we are stuck in a place where light only rarely gets in and where the darkness comes over us and oftentimes consumers us.
My friend is loved, deeply loved but he is just not seeing it at the moment. He is loved by his mother, brother, adult children, his women and men friends, and he is loved by me in the universal sense of love - that he is a sentient being whose place in the universe is important to many of us who know him. There are many kinds of love and an open heart brings a variety to that love. Love isn't just one emotion. Love is a complication of many emotions and feelings, and if we just look around we'll find it in front of us, around us while we are dancing tango, paying music, making fine furniture, shooting brilliant photos, practicing yoga, meditating, playing with the grandchildren, cooking, writing and a host of other experiences. Love is everywhere in our lives. But if we live in the shadow world, we will never know its existence.