Well isn’t that a BROAD subject for a writer with an alarmingly short attention span and only an hour lunch break to tackle. I will however attempt to touch on one aspect of it that seems to be ever present in my life: Expecting love. This to some sounds like a justifiable desire or need but in reality it is an oxy-moron, that this moron (I’m pointing my thumb at myself right now, but you can’t see cause you’re not in my office right now…or are you? Are you stalking me?! Ah creeper!) is constantly finding herself subscribing to foolishly. When at last will “the one” come along? When will I get affirmed in my career field? When will I find a roommate who doesn’t clog the drain up with their hair? When will people live up to my expectations and love me the way I deem appropriate?! Thus defeating the real purpose of love. Expectation equals an assessment of worthiness. Which love does not necessarily see.(My definition of “love” being: Relating to or treating another with actions that are for their best interested or good, despite their status of deserving such action, and forsaking my own well-being, if necessary, in the process.) Which means others will love me in their timing, not my own.
I will use music as an analogy for how we shoot ourselves in the foot when we expect this love.
I was listening to the radio one afternoon, while as usual stuck in Los Angeles traffic. One of my favorite songs came on, my ears perked up, and I turned the volume dial, to 11 of course. I remembered this song so well, and how I felt when I heard it. I knew exactly where each beat and lyric would land and I sat there anticipating each one to happen as it did before. As the song progressed though I started to feel anxious, and the notes were not going as magnificently as I had remembered. I began to pay even closer attention and nitpick, thinking that maybe this song wasn’t actually that great. I waited for a particularly good transition in the song that I knew had melted me before, then sat there worrying so much that it wouldn’t live up to my expectations, that by the time it happened in the song I was already disappointed. Thanks brain.
Everyone has experienced a great composition of music. How it casts a line into your unsuspecting soul and reels you back into itself, yet at its own pace. A feeling of warm washes over your chest and makes your breath halt in your lungs. Held captive in that moment so you can experience every morsel. Like being covered in clay and at last being able to stretch and crack. Who wouldn’t chase after something this good? Well, part of that good is in the fact that it is unexpected. You had no expectations, no standards that this song had to meet, no deadline, no ambitions for it. It simply found you and gave itself to an already contented you. It was the cherry on top of the sundae that you were already satisfied with.
With expecting love, we would do so much better to just be busy with something else and let it greet us when it is ready. If I am expecting someone to love me, or to do something nice for me, because I “deserve” it, then inevitably I will become bitter and disappointed when it doesn’t happen, or if it happens in a way I don’t anticipate. If my focus is on finding a fulfilling career or romantic relationship and neither of those end up in my future, then I will become pessimistic or a crotchety old cat lady with no friends because I kept too tight a grip on love that I killed it, in a Lennie in Of Mice and Men style.
We can sit and dwell on when this feeling will return and ruin it, or we can just be, and let people or experiences surprise us with kind acts and friendship or excitement. The notes will hit. Harmony will happen; you cannot pressure or force it, or seek it to move you. You simply present yourself to the music and let it hit you unexpectedly. Likewise, the sweet and savory taste of unexpected love bestowing its kiss on your unsuspected soul will happen if you stop freaking out and let it.