Wednesday, May 20, 2009

What's Love Got To Do With It?

It's a second hand emotion, as Tina Turner so rightly crooned.

But really, what's love got to do with it? It is an unduly overrated emotion. We are talking about a lifetime here. A lifetime of commitment, of compassion, of caring for each other and of going through testing times and emerging stronger with the support of your partner by your side. We are talking about raising a family and gracefully growing old together.

The English language is constrained because it has just one word 'love' to go through the entire gamut of relationships and emotions. Context is needed to differentiate among various types of love.

People your age would take love to mean as the 'butterflies in the stomach' or 'love at first sight' feelings. But most of the time it is just a hormone-induced chemical reaction which is mistaken for love. Remember this is nature's way of ensuring that at the right age, evolutionary pressures propel you towards propagating the species.

Stop waiting for love to happen. As a sentient being, it is time for you to take off your romantic glasses and take a practical view regarding marriage. This is a lifelong commitment. Try to define the type of person you would want to spend the rest of your life with and raise your children with. Think of this as a 'Swaymvara' where you get to pick and choose. You have a vast pool of potential suitors to pick from, thanks to this age of the internet. All you need to do is discover your priorities, narrow down your choices and find someone you feel comfortable with. Don't worry about the butterflies, you may or may not get them. After you commit yourself, make an ongoing investment in nurturing that relationship. Because you gotta put in more than what you expect in return.

A few decades down the line, when you look at your partner with fondness and remember all the trials and tribulations that you went through together, you will finally understand what love is all about.