Is this love?

Growing up, it is not unusual for us to be taught what we can and cannot, should and should not do. Like, for an instance, it is okay if we do not want to share with someone else ( a neighbor or a person you meet during Sunday church) but we are said to be inconsiderate and selfish if we do not want to share with someone of our “own”

We grow up being told what or how to walk, wear, say or even think. We are brought up, NO, we are conditioned to feel a certain way towards something and when we don’t, that is when the guilt strikes and we feel bad about ourselves.

I was brought up to believe in god, in what my elders say and to believe in my family. Brought up to love my own and doubt who aren’t, to put my countrymen above the others, to love my country and the ones in it irrespective of the circumstances and the history. Brought up to love and cherish all who “teach” me. Brought up to believe that wearing skinny jeans or a deep cut tee was wrong, to believe that whatever hurtful thing said by my family or some high official was a word said in jest or in care. Brought up to believe that there were only certain things that I am capable of, to be a dreamer meant to be a fool. Every word I said, each thought that ran through my mind or the dreams I build upon my aspiration had to be realistic, if not, I would only be asking for a shit load of insults and humiliation.

There is a judgment or two on everything you do. If you were well branded clothes, you are snobby and arrogant but if you don’t, you are either too stingy or poor. If you talk a lot, you are an attention seeker, if not, you are too shy to be social. My point is, you can’t even breathe without having someone breathe judgement down your neck. I used to be a little thick a couple of years ago and was made fun of. There were people telling me how my face was as round as a moon, how my thighs stretched my pants to wide and how my stomach formed “tires” stacked upon one another. Now that I have lost weight, I have people telling me how sick I look, how I should eat more. Have people making sneering comments as to how I must be restricting my food intake or even starving myself. Some one my “own” tell me how much of a pig I am when I eat a lot and when I don’t have much of an appetite, don’t eat as much, I get scolded as to how I eat so little. There is no right thing we can do. How marvelous is the way our brains and thoughts are conditioned? That an external validation of our goodness and smartness is far more important the respect we hold for ourselves? That we feel guilty when we do something we love or want to but is not in line with what we are taught?

The most appealing topic besides sex, is Love. It hurts, doesn’t it? When your friend befriends someone else and leaves you out? When your partner breaks off with you? When someone you held in high regards all those years turns out to be different than you thought? When some celebrity you have/had a crush on dies or is in some deep trouble? When you see a video of  puppy being mistreated? If you have ever asked yourself why, the answer would have either been, “because this is sad/ wrong” or “I feel their pain” or perhaps it was just a moment or two of silence run over by another thought.

You were never taught to feel for people who are not related to you, those who are of no help to you, then why do you? Why does it hurt so bad?

The truest form of love, I believe is the one we feel for someone who was a stranger when we first met them. The love that is not birthed by habit or a inherent mentality but the one that has evolved overtime into an irresistible emotion. One that drives you psychotic but calms you down as well, one that races your beats but stops it as well.  I am not talking about love towards your partner only but also the ones you feel for your friends, best friend (s), celebrities and your pet. Love that is unlikely but plausible. When that happens, we place our trust on someone outside our known circle, in a way we step a little out of our comfort zone. Inherently, it is a very big act of courage when we do things outside our comfort zone. Placing our trusts on someone whom everyone we trust warns us not to is a risk we take on ourselves, a best against ourselves and that is why it hurts when it doesn’t work out. When the counterpart fails to live up to our expectations or ruins it. That is why it hurts.

One question, you know the love you feel for your siblings or your cousins or any other relations? Do you ever wonder if it is because you were taught to love them or if it genuinely is love? Would you have felt the same way about them if they hadn’t been in your life as they are now? What if you meet them the next day, as strangers, would you grow an affection towards them?

Is it love or just the way you are conditioned?


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