let yourself be loved
It’s been 1 year and 1 month since I have been intimately involved with anyone.
If you prefer, listen to the 7-minute audio recording of this story here.
It’s been 1 year and 1 month since I have been intimately involved with anyone. It wasn’t an intentional decision, as such. I was so deeply disappointed and disillusioned by life and the world and my recent experiences with men that I couldn’t even bring myself to engage. I burrowed down into my shell and wept and mourned a myriad of things while going back to therapy amongst a host of other holistic healing and embodiment practices.
I used to throw myself into love with complete abandon. I gave all of myself. I kept nothing for myself. But slowly, ever so slowly, I learned.
Slowly, I am learning
to stop filling up
someone else's gaping heart.
Slowly, I am learning
to fill up my own, instead.
The last time I was with someone, was a friend from lifetimes ago, who fucked like a 12-year-old. It was jarring and horrible and I was astonished that, at our age, this was still possible. In the meantime, he was falling in love and planning a future for us. I abruptly brought it to a halt when I told him that nothing less than spectacular would do for me to entertain the idea of being with someone right now.
Perhaps I have high standards. Perhaps I have been fortunate. My lovers have mostly been men that have taken the time to learn a woman’s body, her anatomy and landscape of desires to the degree that they understand their pleasure echoes from her pleasure. I thought that was normal, by now.
My lover prior to the last had spent years studying and practising tantric philosophies within his marriage so by the time his life journey brought him to my bed he was well versed and a deeply satisfying lover. If nothing else. And I expect nothing less.
Then the past year has been a quiet desert, not even a tumbleweed drifting through my sexual and romantic sphere. I have never experienced a flat line in my intimate life like this before. I must have needed it. A new set of rules and boundaries attend my side these days. A level of discernment and maturity that is new to me. I like it.
I decided it was time. I was ready. Let yourself be loved, a wise woman told me.
Then, one day, about a month ago, I resolved that I was ready to play in the field of polarity again and meet some men. The universe did what she always does. Serve me an array of former lovers that happen to kismet-ly slide into my messages as if they had heard my Siren call. No, I responded sternly. New ones, please.
With much trepidation and disdain, I downloaded Hinge, answered a few questions, uploaded some photos and waited…
Every few days I’d check my ‘likes’ (I refuse to swipe), respond to the occasional hopeful prospect, and so I went on some dates.
Chris. He was predictable in every way. Played golf. Had an apartment in Chelsea. Was staying in a part of Mallorca that might as well have been an English estate transported to this Spanish island. Apparently, he has visited there every year since he was a child and decided to try moving here. Told me his morning routine consisted of going for a run, or the gym, breakfast at the cafe next to his gym, and then work. He was a property investment estate agent. He found no meaning in his work. He was going through the motions. His greatest skill was to say what people wanted to hear. He was also perceptive and intuitive but I don’t think he knew it. We had a glass of wine and went for a walk and spoke about the surface-level details of our lives before he walked me back to my car. I drove off feeling nothing. Neutral. The next day he followed up saying that he got the immediate vibe that he was not what I am looking for. I appreciate the closing of loops.
Dirk. I cancelled because I was tired from staying up half the night watching the first thunder and lightning storm I have seen in years. There’s something about the electricity in the air that enthrals me and I had to be a part of it. The day of the date I was not in the mood… and then never rescheduled. Nor did he.
Tim. I didn’t recognise him from his photos when he strode towards me at our meeting place. In hindsight, it’s because none bar one photo shows his face and that one is half obscured by a bicycle helmet. We walk side by side and talk. It’s my favourite way to get to know someone. I don’t have to look at them and can just feel them instead. I need to vibe a person out to get a sense of who they are. We go for wine at a natural wine bar in the old town and 1 hour turns to 3 and then we walk some more and eat and talk and 3 hours turned to 5 and I suddenly hit a wall of fatigue and excuse myself to go home. Typically, he asks me to come to his apartment for one last glass, which I decline, but instead ask him to pull my car out of a very tight parking spot so I can drive myself home. On reflection, the conversation was delightful, flowing, easy and fun. Moreso I left feeling joyful from the sense that on occasion I may meet interesting and interested men in this way.
A superficial but eclipsing reason for my resistance to dating apps is the story. I love a story. I love a good story. I am a storyteller. And the story “oh, we met via an app” is unsatisfying. Particularly in comparison to the truly compelling and romantic love stories I have collected thus far.
To be continued…
P.S. Why do they all have such ordinary boring names?
P.P.S. 3 journaling questions for you to ponder if you too are opening up to play on the field of polarity and love again:
What love story have I been telling myself that no longer serves me? How would I like to change that story? Maybe you’ve been telling yourself that you need a partner to be happy. What stories about love have you believed? Are they still serving you?
What parts of myself do I want to change? Are there any parts of yourself you want to leave behind? Maybe you lost your independence in the relationship, or you might notice that you are slightly impatient.
In what ways can I show up for myself when no one else can? What do you need right now? What can you do to show up for yourself?
Enjoy today’s journaling practise: