What is Love?

As I type, I'm sort of bopping my head side to side, to the imaginary beat of the 90s one hit wonder, "What is love? Baby don't hurt me. Don't hurt me. No more." I had not really listened to the lyrics of that song. Ever. I thought today, February 14, 2017, might be a good day to rewind, review, reflect and replay my own definition of what love is...from back then (Summer of 1993), and now. 


In a relationship, love meant I needed you to make me happy. Let me repeat it in a slightly direct way...I made you responsible for my happiness. Guess who took the blame for my unhappiness? Lucky you! In relationship, I had this silly belief that I needed to be exactly who and what I thought you needed me to be in order for you to keep loving me. I was unaccepting of me, so why would I think you'd be accepting of me? In order to keep your love/devotion/attention, I made every attempt to be the 'perfect girlfriend'. That was pretty much impossible and so I had to get creative at coercing, seducing, manipulating, and or controlling you. And when that didn't work I got busy trying to turn you into the boyfriend I thought you should be. And when all else failed, I made one last ditch effort to win you over through bribery, jealousy or gifts. Being in a relationship with me was a scary, never-ending roller coaster ride of emotions and uncertainty. I was busy RESISTING LOVE! The song could easily be renamed 'Resist Love'. Lol. In fact, every single relationship I've had (until now) has played out all over the Unhappy Kid Triangle. I lived in Victimhood! Like the song lyrics below, my fear of being hurt by 'you', meant I could never really allow myself to be truly loved by 'you'. I've taken the original lyrics and added some exaggerated 'Unhappy Kid Ego' mind chatter to add a little comic relief. Although I have to admit...some of these unhappy thoughts still creep up from time to time:-)

What is love?                       {I have no earthly idea but I'm going to resist it}
Baby, don't hurt me            {I know you are going to hurt me. Men hurt me. Resist.}
Don't hurt me no more       {I'll be perfect if you promise not to hurt me. Hesitant. Resist.}

Baby, don't hurt me            {What's the point? You don't really love me. Resist.)
Don't hurt me no more       {if you keep hurting me I'm going to have to hurt you back. Attack.}

What is love?                       {You make me happy. I make you happy. Right? Control.}

Yeah, yeah                           

I don't know why you're not there         {if you really cared, you'd be here. Resist. Manipulate.}
I give you my love, but you don't care {no matter how hard I try-it's not good enough. Collapse}
So what is right?                  {I'm not right for you? How can I convince you that I am?}
And what is wrong?             {I'm bad? It's not fair. Why can't life be perfect?}
Gimme a sign                       {My entire happiness is dependent upon your approval of me}

What is love?                       {We'll live happily ever after. It won't be real...but that's ok, right?}
Baby, don't hurt me            {What do I have to do, to make you love me? Bully}
Don't hurt me no more       {You're making me feel bad. Helpless Baby}

What is love?                       {You make me happy. I make you happy. Right?}
Baby, don't hurt me            {Let me lecture about all the ways you hurt me. Bossy Helper}
Don't hurt me no more       {I'll punish you by withholding my love. Maybe that'll make you stop}

Oh, I don't know, what can I do?   {I really am out of ideas. This is exhausting}
What else can I say, it's up to you  {I truly believe you are responsible for my happiness}
I know we're one     {I am in control. We just have to be together. I'll make it destiny}
Just me and you     {I don't want to be alone. I have to make this work}
I can't go on           {if you leave, it'll only prove what I believe; that I am 'undeserving of love'}

I want no other, no other lover                {I don't have the energy to do this all over again}
This is our life, our time                                   {why can't I make you love me?}
When we are together, I need you forever     {let's be miserable together forever!}
Is it love?                                    {It sure doesn't feel good, but it's better than nothing}

Baby, don't hurt me           {I'm at the mercy of a scary, unloving world}
Don't hurt me no more      {I need you to take responsibility for me}
What is love?                     {Beats me!}


Let's fast forward to 2017. I am an entirely different person with an entirely different perspective about Love and relationships. I see and experience life through a new lens called REALITY. When I am accepting of Reality, I experience peace, harmony, joy and love. When I am resisting Reality, although I am still being loved, I experience dis-ease, disharmony, fear, anger and or sadness. God is Love. In a relationship, I love, because He first loved me. I am responsible for my happiness. You are responsible for your happiness. There is no one to blame if either one of us experiences trials and tribulations. We both recognize that life (Reality) was never promised to be 'trouble free'. We are not victims at the mercy of a scary, unloving, dangerous world. We are loved.  In relationship, I understand and value the person God created me to be. The only approval I seek is God's. I give you permission to be the person God created you to be. I am accepting of me and take responsibility (own my part) when I miss the mark. I don't have to perform or be perfect in order to 'keep your love/devotion/attention'. In my daily walk, I desire to be a Godly woman. I want to please my Father in Heaven. I don't have to coerce, seduce, manipulate, and or control you. You are the exact person you are supposed to be and you are in my life for a reason. When we disagree or argue, it is meant to refine and grow us closer together. When you miss the mark, I am accepting and understanding rather than blaming and vindictive. The only person that can hurt me, is me. I am respectful of your process. I'm an empathetic listener and authentic in how I respond. I am honest, open and relentlessly kind. Being in a relationship with me is still like a roller coaster ride...but perhaps a smaller one with shorter drops, softer turns, lots more laughter, forgiveness, acceptance and joy. I'm so grateful to my husband for his willingness to be a perfectly imperfect human being with me!

Let's take the original lyrics once more and apply REALITY to it! Remember, Reality is just the way it is...everything else is a story (and usually an unhappy one)!

What is love?                       {God is Love}
Baby, don't hurt me            {God is for me. Who can be against me?}
Don't hurt me no more       {I am the only one that can hurt me}

Baby, don't hurt me            {It is unkind/unloving of me to believe my unhappy story about you.}
Don't hurt me no more       {I don't have to blindly believe every thought I think!}

What is love?                       {Patient. Kind. Honest. Forgiving. Accepting. Empathetic.}

Yeah, yeah                           

I don't know why you're not there    {I trust you are where you are for a reason.}
I give you my love, but you don't care   {Your job is to reflect to me, my relationship with me}
So what is right?                  {If we disagree, I'll drop my story to see/hear your perspective.}
And what is wrong?             {If I miss the mark, how quickly can I own my part? Freedom}
Gimme a sign                       {God completely surrounds us with signs for us to see his Love}

What is love?                       {Honesty. Surrender. Submission. Kindness. Faith.}
Baby, don't hurt me            {How can I empower you to question your unhappy story?}
Don't hurt me no more       {I may want to blame you sometimes. When I do please forgive me.}

What is love?                       {Making peace with Reality. Trusting God has my back. Always.}
Baby, don't hurt me            {I trust you have the tools within you to find your way.}
Don't hurt me no more       {As soon as I give up my unhappy story, peace abounds.}

Oh, I don't know, what can I do?   {Give it to God. With God, nothing is impossible}
What else can I say, it's up to you  {You can have that story if you want to. Not my business}
I know we're one     {How can I surrender more of my story to receive more love? Surrender}
Just me and you     {God created the perfect man for me to honor and love. Trust}
I can't go on           {It would be painful, but if you and I part, I trust it. God's will}

I want no other, no other lover       {Thy will be done. I don't need/want to be in control}
This is our life, our time                  {I am walking my path. You, yours.}
When we are together, I need you forever     {I'll fix my eyes only on you God}
Is it love?                                    {You are for me. I cannot measure your immense love for me}

Thank you for walking down memory lane with me. I may have to listen to Haddaway's 'What is Love' song now, just for kicks! I hope you have a blessed day. 

Peace, love and blessings,