What is this thing called love? There are probably more stories, poems and songs written about love than any other subject. And, it would seem that none of us are totally immune to its fascination. There are all kinds of love. There is the love we have for our family and friends as well as the love we feel for a certain person who makes our pulse race, our eyes light up and our temperature rise. That is the love I will be addressing for the duration of this article.
Why is it that out of the hundreds of people we meet in our lifetime, there are only a select few that inspire that warm, fuzzy feeling of romantic love? On what criteria do we base those choices? Given the widespread communication via the internet, people have a choice of mates that has not been possible at any other time in history. Some folks are packing up their belongings and moving across the world to be with the object of their desire. What is it about love that would induce someone to give up everything that they are familiar with and travel into completely unknown territory? And, what is it about certain relationships that allows love to endure even after 60 or more years?
How does one fall in love? It would seem that some people are attracted to one another on a purely physical basis at first. They like the way each other look- and so a conversation ensues. This type of attraction generally only works when both parties are equally attracted. At some point an emotional attachment forms and then love blooms. Other people may start out with an emotional connection to one another, especially in online relationships. Both parties can identify with the feelings of the other and eventually that emotional bond leads to a bond of love. There are even some relationships that start out with both parties actively disliking one another. It would seem that the mental challenge involved in wearing down the opposition can also lead to love.
In any case, the main symptom of love is the urge to spend every waking moment with your potential mate. Your senses are heightened, you feel alive and alert, and even the biggest problem seems surmountable when you are with the person of your dreams. You are on a physical, emotional and mental rollercoaster, hopefully with more highs then lows.
But, what happens when trust is betrayed, one of the parties involved falls out of love, or circumstances prohibit a long term romantic relationship? I guess that it would be safe to say that this is the time when love hurts. The process of grieving a lost love can be just as intense in a break-up as it is if one partner dies. Some people never get past that grief. Yet, others go on to other love relationships often as strong or stronger than their first. Why do some people have the capability to love again and again while others find their fulfillment in one love of a lifetime?
Whatever the case, it would seem that love does indeed make the world go ‘round.