By Kenneth Stepp
How love works… Interesting title, it sounds more like a how to instructional manuel. Perhaps it will be. I never know what I will write until the words are written. Having said that, I will try to convey my thoughts on this very deep subject.
I’m writing this because I am compelled to write about everything that I feel on my journey as a single person who has lived a fair portion of his life already, and I have failed enough times to have learned a thing or two about life.
All of my friends and most of my readers know my story about how and why I became a writer. I got hurt and began putting my feelings on paper. I became single almost 7 years ago. I knew nothing about what to do, red flags, or what relationships looked like these days. I just remembered the way we did it decades before and jumped right in.
I was told by friends that online dating was now the thing. I created a profile and BOOM! It looked never ending. I met some wonderful girls online but one caught my attention, Susan. We shared many texts and emails, calls, and messages. One day it was time to meet. I still talk about our first 3 dates. They will always be amazing memories.
I fell so hard for her. I fell in love, I think she thought she did as well. We didn’t make it and we became a vault wonderful memories. The pain of not having her caused me to write about her. It was my way of dealing with the pain. I wrote about her with tears in my eyes for years. I weaved her into many of my writings. She was the impetus for the ones that went viral.
Unconditional love became more of a caring thing over time. I wrote my first poem about her, “She Is Loved”. When she wrote a comment on it saying that it was beautiful, it made my day. I didn’t know she read my work. I wrote, “A Knight’s Surrender” about how the journey to her was like being on a battlefield. Below are links to both writings. I could go on all day talking about the words penned about her. It was as if as long as my words existed in my life, so did she. Kind of silly really.
I still check her out online from time to time, last week I learned that she got married again. This is where unconditional love kicks in. All I could feel was happiness. Knowing she was out of this sea of unattached people, knowing she was happy, and knowing her life is on a new and exciting journey was something that made me happy. Weird, right?
Love is a complicated thing with many layers. The dynamics are so different depending on the who and where, that I am still amazed by them. I learned a lot from Susan. I learned I could love again, I learned my capacity to love was huge, I learned what real love actually is. That it lasts forever. For these lessons I am so thankful.
I hope everyone experiences real unconditional love some day. I have loved this way 3 times in my life and will always love them. Love really is a life sentence if it’s real. I still write when I hurt. But I write when I’m happy too. I suppose that means I’ve evolved. I’m a guy so evolving isn’t guaranteed.
Finding a love that last means you are vulnerable. It means you have more to lose, because of this, it can also mean you’ll fear it a little. Exposing our hearts this much is frightening and it is also necessary if we want real love in our future. Don’t run from it, embrace it. For me, even though we didn’t make it, we both found happiness again. That’s a win win in my book.
Congratulations, Susan and Jeff. I hope the future rocks for you guys.