The Love Series:3 Ways I Learnt About Love The Right Way

I was not that into him and I knew it.

It was a hot Sunday afternoon in Lagos, too hot. I knew without a doubt I wanted to end it; I had grown bored, and the distance wasn’t helping; I felt no ounce of remorse as I picked up my phone and dialled his number, in less than ten minutes, I told him; we were done; he didn’t beg; he said if that was what I wanted he was okay with it, and I felt a huge sigh of relief, the relationship had run its course. 

It was time for me to move on to new things, I had lost the “loving” feeling.

Now, I know that paragraph makes me come across as a savage but I’m not one;truth is I realized that I wanted to be single and be by myself. My attention was drifting, my tolerance was wearing thin, and everything seemed to get old, fast.   

You know in various ways there were a series of events that led me to this realization, for one, there was a lack of real connection, I don’t think we were compatible, and I lost interest.

Was I in love? No, I have never been.

I believe what I experience is being present, when it’s good and going great, I allow myself experience the emotions that go with relational attachments, the infatuation, and the euphoria.

But when it ends I’m left questioning the validity of my emotions, because I seem to move on quickly

But does it mean that when relationships end, they have to be rife with endless hours of sobbing, sadness and brooding for them to hold weight and meanings in our lives, I don’t think so. Must we always be in love with everyone we date, be it two minutes or two years.

Feelings, emotions and love are three very different things. We can have feelings, desires and longings for people, who will share portions of our lives but we will not love all or dare I say any of them.

In our modern society, we see romantic relationships as avenues for gaining experiences about what loving means; I beg to differ. They don’t all teach you about love, some don’t even teach you anything at all, dare I say, they can leave you feeling bitter, frustrated and confused. Sometimes they teach us about ourselves, other times we are just young and we want a boyfriend who knows? Sometimes we have these experiences as a rite of passage into adulthood.

My point is we musn’t always look for love in every relationship, it is impossible to find it. 

We socialize women, from an early age to think we must seek for meaning in romantic relationships, no matter how short lived the affair is or how ill-suited you are as partners. 

Real love takes time, connection, and the willingness to put in the work to achieve that, and sadly most of us don’t know how to, shoot I’m only truly understanding what it takes and I am 30.

I will wrap up this series this week with my last lesson over the weekend.

Love

Ndidi

The girl who lived in the shadows

Do you know her? Have you seen her? She was the girl who lived in the shadows, she didn’t come out very often, she was painfully shy and very self-aware,she loved reading romantic novels, and taking long walks by the beach. She spent her days dreaming about what could be.

She was very quiet, only spoke when she was spoken to, she didn’t like the sound of her own voice, it was too soft for her liking not assertive enough, she didn’t like being around people they made her nervous, they always had something to say.

Although she had grand dreams and ideas that could fill so many pages, she was unsure, she had doubts, she was anxious, she told herself they were just dreams that she was  incapable of fulfilling, she was excited by the possibilities but she was too scared of the disappointments.

I met her once you know, a really long time ago, I remember the first time we spoke, I remember it like it was yesterday, I asked her what was her name and why she was always alone. She said “Josephine, my name is Josephine, I am always alone because I am afraid, I prefer to be the girl in the shadows not seen or heard, I have so much I want to do but I have settled on just passing by”. Why I asked?  Well she said rather sheepishly, ”my voice is too soft no one will hear me, I walk too quietly my footsteps don’t make an impact, I love to sing but I don’t sound too good, I write stories, poems, songs but no one will read them, I am riddled with so much self-doubt it is quite impossible for me to do anything, so I decide to live in the shadows for that is where I find the most comfort, here I am not questioned, I am not ridiculed, there is no criticism, there are no failures, there is only darkness and I love it”.

But my dear I said ”the shadows are not the place for one as beautiful as you, for you have wonderful stories to tell, you have great songs to sing, you have beautiful dresses to make, your voice though soft is pleasing to the ear, your footsteps though unsure are steady, do not waste your time my love living in the shadows, do not fear failure my love, for nothing ventured is nothing gained, not everyone will like or accept you, but that’s okay, you were born to create and express the wonderful gifts that lie inside of you”.

”Really” she said, she smiled at me for the first time, okay she said ”I will no longer live in the shadows, for it possible for me live my dreams in spite of my doubts”. And with that she turned around gave me a hug and walked away. It has been a while since I saw the girl who lived in the shadows, for I do not know what became of her, I wonder sometimes, did she step out of the shadows and become all that she was destined to be, I have a feeling she did and for that I am very glad.

xoxo