Love-gaze. You know, that magical moment you read about in romance novels and see in sappy chick flicks. The few who believe “love at first sight” exists never seems to experience it when we listen to their epic tale of meeting their significant other. It is those who disengage from searching that encounter this legendary moment. When the world blurs, and all we see is their complete and utter perfection, personified.
And then we proceed to lose our minds.
We think about them the moment we wake. We question every action related to getting their attention. We give and give and give for just a fraction of what we pray we can receive in return. We hang on every compliment or kind gesture they give to us only to find out those priceless words we treasured are doled out to others for free. Self-worth crashes and burns.
Pretend not to care. Pretend not to see. Pretend that the questions & scenarios we ponder are ultimately futile. Those who have forgotten how to cry wander in confusion, wondering why love-gaze ever happened. Why their stomach won’t stop clenching. Why they ever believed taking action would change anything.
Giving up is easy when the odds seem stacked against us. We become desperate and seek the approval of those who’s words have weight. Our friends offer encouraging words and nothing more – we can only help ourselves anyway.
So we cry on the inside because crying on the outside hurts too much. We hold it in, clench our teeth, and smile through the frustrations and heartache of bearing the unknown. Maybe we do have a chance to achieve some manner of self-completion if only we hang on for just a little longer. Plugging the dam with the shred of faith we can muster.
“You deserve better,” they say.
“You will be appreciated & loved one day,” they say.
“You are beautiful,” they say
And we thank them, having long since committed those very thoughts to memory as if our life depended on it. Remembering we must love ourselves, today, more than yesterday.