I am asked about Love constantly, love and the notion of a soul mate. After all, I sing about love; be it a lack of love, an over-abundance or a good lusty romp in the hay. I write about those issues, not because I have a string of lovers (oh I do wish!) but because I have an overwhelming desire to understand people and nothing seems to cause greater distress than matters of the heart.
Usually I can be found huddled in a corner with someone, a glass of whiskey in hand, listening intently. “How did you meet? When did you know that you loved her? When did you suspect it was over? What have you learnt?” I pay attention to every word, every gesture and when something heart wrenching is unexpectedly revealed, I whip out my phone and jot it into my secret folder. I am inspired by the bravery of those I speak to. How do they do it, I wonder? How do they rush into love without fear or doubts? Or in spite of it?
The idea that there’s someone who will “complete us” is utter tosh of course. Great for movies and music but nonsense nevertheless. Although I am an incurable romantic, I am a realist before all else. I do not believe in soul mates. My list of dvd’s might convince you otherwise, but let’s not get into that. Here’s my theory.We humans really are an arrogant lot. After being alive for a bit, we mistakenly believe that we have the answers. We know how things should be done, we are firm in our beliefs and unflinchingly in the pursuit of our ambitions. Life is running smoothly and then Boom! We meet someone or something completely blindsides us and we are forced to re-evaluate everything.
This happened to me on numerous occasions! And not all of those run-ins were pleasant either. Sometimes I would have a rip roaring argument that leaves me in complete ruin and tears and very much beside myself. Then I go slip into the familiar, I over-think everything. Why did I meet this person now? And why the hell couldn’t I just be speak my mind? And why, oh why, was I such an idiot!!?
Would you like to know why I think this must happen? It’s just a little idea I have, so bear with me. We are gifted with people, with events…with moral dilemmas that challenge and demand that we take a hard look at the choices we make. Why do I use the term “gifted” you ask? What greater gift is there than clarity? Granted those gifts usually come wrapped in drama, frustration, anger and tears..but you are never the same afterwards, are you?Sometimes we are so busy with our lives that we forget what we really desire and those people are thunderstorms, the wayshowers who illuminate the path… back to the selves we left behind.
Not only are we arrogant but we are also lazy. We never do what needs to be done. There’s always tomorrow…and tomorrow..and tomorrow. The biggest gifts I was granted was my daughter and my divorce. That gave me the clarity I needed. I am a better human being as a result, or I try to be. And that’s all I ask of whoever I allow into my life, personally and professionally. That honesty and clarity always be present…because when I am not honest with myself and my needs – the universe will gift me with a little surprise to turn my life upside down, so that I may answer the very question I was so busy running from.
I have quoted my Beloved Ben Harper on many occasions, and for perfectly valid reasons. In the song Don’t Give Up On Me Now, he sings, “And I don’t even know myself, what it would take to know myself. I need to change I don’t know how. Don’t give up on me now..” So I don’t…I don’t give up on those I love and care for, and most certainly not on myself. Especially when I lose my way or am at a complete loss. My favorite poet Rumi once said, “ Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.’ Forget the idea of a soul mate. Try being your own best friend. Try seeing the best in others, living honestly. When those thunderstorms do arrive, stay. Listen and try to see – not the person involved but the lesson about yourself you are being shown. Trust me, if you do that…whoever needs to find and love you will…