Learning to Love

I recently entered into a relationship after many years of avoiding relationships and it was an absolutely amazing experience for me.

My first date with this man was lined up to be for one afternoon after work. We had arranged to meet for dinner. As I was preparing to leave work I felt a little bit of nervousness, but when I got into my car this passed, and as I drove towards the restaurant I felt a deep settlement in my body. I felt much more of a woman. It was a truly incredible experience as I hadn’t ever felt anything to this depth within myself before. All feelings of nervousness were no longer there and there was just a feeling of absoluteness, knowing and grace.

When I arrived and met my date we decided to go for a walk before having dinner. As we walked along the river a bird was flying along beside us about 2 to 3 metres away. It kept flying at a height just above our heads then plummeting straight down into the water only to come back up and do this again. It did it for the whole length of our walk. We looked at it and laughed. It was a bit of a sign saying, jump right in — something I often wouldn’t do for fear of getting hurt or rejected.

Learning to Love Heart and Sky

There was such an ease to being with this man and he shared he felt the same with me.

I hadn’t gone to the date with any expectations or pictures, there was just an openness to meeting him.

We connected over dinner and the conversation was easy and flowed. I left the date with the same feeling as when I drove to it, this in itself was pretty cool for me. I haven’t ever really found it easy to open up with men but there was something about this man that I trusted and the ease I felt around him was a new marker of how I could just be myself with another – no trying to impress or needing to be anything.

Over the next few days we continued to communicate over text message and decided to meet up for dinner again a few days later. He arrived at my house to pick me up and this time some nervousness had crept in. We went to dinner and the conversation didn’t flow as much and it was a bit awkward in moments. On the way home he shared that he had felt a bit nervous about what to expect on a second date and had even googled it. I shared that I felt a bit the same and could feel how we had both now had pictures creeping in of ‘measuring’ each other and where this was going and how it would work etc., instead of just staying with what we felt.

We decided to take the pressure off it needing to be anything and from here our dates changed a fair bit. We loved hanging out together. Previously I have avoided spending time with the same person but this guy somehow found his way in and I just loved being around him. Our dates from this point changed – they were pretty unconventional and included things like helping with a work project, cleaning a property, taking a friend’s kids out for the day and meeting his family at a busy and hectic market – they were all pretty funny experiences but allowed us to get to know each other more just through living life together.

Over the next few weeks it grew into a relationship and this for me was the first relationship where I felt that I was actually myself in it. I wasn’t perfect but I felt a total ease within myself and I was able to open up with this man in a way that I have never opened up with another before.

Through this I started to learn much more about myself. I always had this idea that I wasn’t good at relationships but this experience was starting to totally bust this open for me. I got to learn that I actually wasn’t this standoffish person, but that I had an amazing capacity to express love. I had held this back for a long time but was now at a place within myself where I had dropped a lot of the protection and was able to open up in this way and it was an amazing feeling.

I adored this man and didn’t hold this back. At times he said he felt it was a bit difficult to accept the love as he had stuff coming up with that, I wobbled and held back a little bit but soon came back to sharing with him how I felt about him.

From being with him I learnt how I am able to hold people and express a huge amount of love (yes, this wasn’t perfect and there was need in there too at times) but I got to see that what I bring and offer another is absolute gold when I let it out and I got to feel the difference that it makes to someone.

The more that I expressed this my body started to change. I felt more beautiful in myself as a woman, I walked taller and my face got softer. Other aspects and relationships in my life also started to change. I became more of myself at work and was opening up with others more too.

I got to see that when I come from love it makes a huge difference to others.

I stopped getting so invested in or intense about things and was more able to allow things to be.

The relationship lasted for a couple of months before ending. When it ended I didn’t have any resentment or bitterness. There was still just a feeling of accepting and still deeply loving this man, even though the way this would be expressed would change.

I did have feelings come up of missing him and missing the connection that we had and also an old pattern resurfaced for a few days of wanting to hold back love and not let anyone in.

However, what I came to realise was that love wasn’t tied to the relationship. It was something that came from within me that I allowed out to be expressed with another and that this didn’t lessen or leave me because I was no longer in a relationship.

I also got to feel and realise that the depth and level of love that was expressed in this relationship is a depth that sometimes people never get to experience in their whole life: that people can be in relationships but it can actually be quite lonely. I had all the pictures and thoughts come up that for it to be a ‘successful’ relationship there needed to be wedding bells and happily ever after. However, I got to see that even though it ended, for me it was a truly successful relationship because through it I learnt to express love in a way that I never have before, and this stays with me.

It is now there as the foundation for my next relationship. It’s my starting point, and from there I know that my expression of love can only get deeper and grow.

I also learnt that I don’t need to hold myself back in celebrating and enjoying myself as a woman.

This came out more in this relationship because it was there in me to be let out. The relationship – and its ending – showed me that I can continue to get to know, enjoy and express this side of me, regardless of whether I’m in a relationship with another. Being in this relationship was an amazing experience for me as I started to let more of myself out and share this with another. Through this relationship I have learnt that I can continue to bring this quality and a deepening connection to all of my relationships.

By Anonymous

For further inspiration …

Saying ‘no’ to the pictures and ‘yes’ to loving ourselves, first – Adele’s experience.

A powerful audio – what is true love?

Loving ourselves is the path to true love with another.. read Zofia’s story on dating and finding true love.

 

753 thoughts on “Learning to Love

  1. To let the love out, we have to let go of the constructs we have tangled ourselves into. Judgements, expectations and pictures. When that happens, it opens the door for a new way to experience life.

  2. Expectations in any area of our lives will set us up to fail – best ditch them the second we feel them come in.

  3. The first person we date is ourselves, often because we have forgotten who we are from working so hard to fit into life and be ‘accepted’. Yet we will never know if we have been fully accepted unless we embrace who we are and bring that to the world, otherwise people we are in a relationship with are simply getting to know a version of us, and often one we don’t know that well either.

  4. it is so beautiful to feel and read your blog. What came to me was how healing relationships truly are, if only we let them in and not get caught up with old patterns and behaviors around them all. Just be open to love and all it entails in this particular relationship at this moment.

  5. It is such a powerful read dispelling so many pictures and beliefs we have about love that are untrue. We can place the power to feel love or not onto others, then it can become something we feel we have not control over and we go in and out of, when it’s actually our essence and consistently inside us. A great line “However, what I came to realise was that love wasn’t tied to the relationship.”

    1. I agree, when we look at relationships as opportunities to evolve together it’s a completely different purpose and a more picture free space to enjoy one another.

  6. Learning to truly love is one of the finest things on earth. And whether in a one to one relationship or not it is something that when realised beautifully infuses all our relationships.

  7. Everyday we have an opportunity to deepen our love with another, I feel this is all about letting go of trying and instead just feeling and following the purpose of what is there to come through and to be expressed.

    1. I am sure anyone we are in a relationship with would appreciate that unimposing way of being. The moment we are trying or have an agenda we are controlling and not truly present in a relationship.

  8. What you have shared is amazing anonymous and I admire your courage to just let go and see what happens. Not many people can do that.

  9. There is a huge celebration here that you have opened up and shown the games played in relationships but also what happens when we claim ourselves is the biggest change we can make. It is so easy to blame the other person for whatever, but we can feel the reflection comes back to ourselves.

  10. How beautiful it is to discover that love is being tender, delicate and precious in everything we touch and do from the moment we wake up to when we sleep. All we have to do is connect it.

    1. The true quality of life is always there and never will it not be there, we have to learn to not scribble over the top of it and then it will be known to us again in exactly the same way that it was known to us before.

  11. I am starting to understand the debilitating scourge of fear to another level this morning; how it holds us back and stops us feeling the Love and the Joy that is otherwise present in our relationships.

  12. Love is a quality that flows through us and is from our inner heart. It is not for us to hold onto it, but to express it and let it out.

  13. I love the title of this blog ” Learning to Love” We really do have to learn to love, ourselves firstly before we have the same to offer others. But first lets deconstruct the many
    false pictures we have of romantic love and get back on track. True love is universal, knows no bounds and cannot be restricted to one person or immediate family. To align with this infinite reservoir of love, accessible to all equally and live it, is to be reborn.

  14. It is beyond beautiful to learn to love and to be a willing student of its ongoing unfoldment. Love is the strength, delicacy, warmth and intelligence that is at the heart of our development and evolution.

  15. Thank you for this honest sharing and the huge learning you received from the relationship by being open and honest. We do have a huge tendency to be intense and hold pictures of how we want life to be. In this wanting to control there is no room for the spontaneity and flow of life.

  16. The more I consider what is really important in life the more I realise that it is all about relationships and our interactions with one another. Then it can be so simple. If it is all about relationships, all we have to do is uphold a standard and quality in how we conduct ourselves, how we care for ourselves and how honest, open, respectful and honouring we are with each other.

  17. I really get a sense that to love is to be and express who we are in our true essence and keep doing it, so being in a relationship with another is to confirm this commitment of ours, and allowing a possibility of it being expanded to be.

  18. I love re reading how you dropped the pictures of what dates look liked and really enjoyed each other by hanging out with each other. It is one thing to pick an activity to do with each other and another to really connect and en-joy.

  19. I heard the most beautiful sentence yesterday. ‘Love like there is no tomorrow’. And when I really let myself hear those words, realise what was actually being shared, I understood the stupidity of letting any past hurts or anything interrupt what is actually totally natural to all of us.

    1. Yes, so natural because it is who we are, what we are made of and where we are from 🙂 To love like there is no tomorrow completes moments and there is much more ease in our day and we rest, sleep and recharge so much better. So perhaps Love is our way back to true health and wellbeing…

  20. It is always quite remarkable to read this, it’s an inspiring kind of true love story where the love is not dependent on others but grows because of the opportunity with another but continues to grow after that has ended. That’s actually the kind of love that stays around even if people or partners come and go. I can relate to this line, it’s something we commonly do as human beings, I also noticed it after the death of someone close to me “I did have feelings come up of missing him and missing the connection that we had and also an old pattern resurfaced for a few days of wanting to hold back love and not let anyone in.”

  21. Expectations are such killers, expectations stop us from entering into that otherwise amazing relationship and expectations once in a relationship can cause so much problems.
    Super important we drop the projection we have of how we want someone to be and instead feast on the love that is presented.

  22. ‘I hadn’t gone to the date with any expectations or pictures, there was just an openness to meeting him.’ How amazing our relationships would be when we would choose to have no expextations or pictures. Let’s not imagine how amazing as this would be another picture above on all the others we have.

  23. This comment is one we could remind ourselves of regularly “love wasn’t tied to the relationship” because we often ascribe certain feelings to certain moments, experiences or people. Yet love comes from within and therefore if we love deeply then we will continue to love deeply regardless of the change in situation or location.

  24. We have so many pictures about relationships including that to be classed as successful they have to last a long time but this is one of the many myths that you have busted with your deeply touching expression of how you found your true loving expression in this relationship and now it is there to be shared and deepened with all.

  25. “I also learnt that I don’t need to hold myself back in celebrating and enjoying myself as a woman.” This is beautiful and something for all women to realise and bring into our lives with the fullness this allows in all our relationships lovingly.

  26. Our inner deepest most love is not dependent on outer circumstances but can infuse all our relationships in life, if we allow it to be so.

  27. “Learning to love” a forever expanding process of joy and presence that opens us up to the world and ourselves beautifully.

  28. A beautiful celebration of you and how you expressed your love in a relationship and the joy in that – and that’s a true relationship one where we love as we are and are loved.

  29. “However, what I came to realise was that love wasn’t tied to the relationship. It was something that came from within me ” Superb realisation. Love is infinite, gifted to us to be shared not owned or limited to one or select few.

  30. Incredible. We’ve put so many blocks in our way, we don’t know how to love. Your sharing is beautiful because it shows us how we can ‘learn to love’ again.

  31. It is interesting that we disconnect from the love that we are and then seek it externally in the form of acceptance, recognition and approval.

  32. “Learning to Love” – I can say I learned to love when I truly connected to my body and my feelings …and that I fell in love when I connected to my femaleness to then absolutely adore myself as a woman through my innate quality of stillness.

  33. The pictures we bring in to most if not all situations totally caps the potential to flow and be accessed. We limit things to a minut portion of what is truely possible.

  34. This is learning to love; to see that what we bring and offer another is absolute gold when we let it out and to feel the difference that it makes to someone. We are here to share the gold that is in us, the love that we all are.

  35. What a wonderful example of true love and purpose in a relationship. And also a wonderful example of the needlessness between two people. Very refreshing to feel and super needed in today’s world.

    1. After living 52 years on the planet in this lifetime and God knows how many years in previous lifetimes I am only just on the cusp of coming to know and understand the purpose and potential in relationships. I’m not quite sure what I’ve been doing up until now but know that neither me nor anybody else benefitted from my previous flounderings.

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