I never understood Love.
I knew that Love existed because I Loved my Mumsy, and my siblings, and my grandparents, and other family members, and to some extent my friends, who were always there for me and who Loved me too. Unconditional Love, where it doesn’t matter what you do, what you say, what you wear …
Other Love was a minefield for my head.
I had my first kiss [sans tongues] when I was twelve.
I had my first kiss [avec tongues] when I was almost fourteen, with a French boy.
I had my first serious boyfriend [who liked leather, a lot] when I was seventeen.
I fell in Love for the first time when I was eighteen. For six weeks I lived in bliss, sharing myself with a full-bloodied, red-haired hunk of an Irishman [who wasn’t keen on the English, wtf?]. He had perfect fingers and he knew what to do with them. I don’t think of him often, but when I do I quiver a little and hope that some woman, somewhere, is making the most of those Irish fingers.
He broke my heart. Left me sobbing in my hall of residence bedroom after telling me that he still fancied me but he fancied someone else too. In my determination to win him back I went out and pulled another chap. When he remained impervious to my affections I went and pulled another one.
And I remained with this other one for two years and twelve days. I didn’t just sleep with this one, I slept with him. Thus, I lost my virginity at the grand old age of eighteen, to a lad who I’d only just met, whilst still remaining in Love with Irish Fingers. And I gradually fell out of Love with Irish Fingers and in Love with Ginger Nuts.
Who broke my heart when he cheated on me. Left me sobbing on the stairs leading up to my flat in the scariest street in Sunnyland.
Following a bleak few months of chasing every man with a pulse I finally met The BullyBoy, when I was twenty-one. And despite the verbal, mental and physical abuse I recieved from him, I gradually found myself falling in Love again. There’s a song there, somewhere.
He was my last relationship before The Blokey. He lasted four years and four months and I was in Love with him regardless of his faults and his issues.
I broke his heart after the bruises and the apologies got boring, left him sobbing on a train going back up North.
There were a few near-misses betwixt him and The Blokey, but The Blokey finally found me in the spring of 2002 and I fell in Love with him before we even met [emails are a godsend for shy folk like me].
It took me a long time to realise that it’s ok to say that I was in Love before I met The Blokey. I always believed that Love was exclusive, that you could only ever Love one person in your life. I couldn’t comprehend how I could feel so much Love for someone and then not feel Love for that same person. Surely that simply meant that I hadn’t Loved them in the first place? How can feelings change so much? Why had I invested so much time and energy into them if I didn’t Love them?
I obviously did Love them, but other things got in the way of Love and our lives stopped following the same path. I’m comfortable now. I like comfortable Love. It’s Love that is almost totally unconditional. It’s Love that enjoys smudged make-up as much as dressing up; where hugs are just as precious as gymnastic antics; where not flushing the toilet in the middle of the night is fine; where you can be yourself and not have to worry about creating the wrong impression because he knows you inside out and back to front and better than you ever knew yourself.
And comfortable Love lets you have been in Love before, and it doesn’t detract from the relationship.
And now I understand Love. And Love is good, in all its shapes.
Share the Love and send me a Valentine …
You can be as dirty/witty/sarcastic/miserable [*delete as appropriate] as you so desire.
please God bless the miserable single people as Valentine’s Day approaches xxx Elsabeth