Love – No, One Size Fits All!
Say what you need to say…
Yes, I took it from John Mayer’s chorus, but has he copyrighted this phrase that I shouldn’t use it here?
This phrase implies that we need to express ourselves explicitly, in sync with our thoughts and minds, especially the emotions, and in particular when we are in a relationship…, these emotions are like a hot magma (the material that a volcano spits) need to be released when it needs, else it will manifest in a variety of ways: frustration, depression, insecurity, you name it! But my question is how do we do that? Is there a standard way that ‘expressions’ must be ‘expressed’?
As you’re already aware that I’m not only a serious proponent of the natural selection theory postulated by Charles Darwin, but also a supporter of his subsequent work, the sexual selection process. Instead of quoting his long text here, take a look at this (not that long video) Sexual Selection and the Art of Courtship, to get a glimpse of that work.
I think, this sexual selection ‘celestial dance or drama’ complicates our emotional expression – in particular it confuses many folks about certain type of emotional expressions, like this ‘Crazy Little Thing Called Love’ between a man and a woman; be it a dating couple, the married ones or even between ‘friends-with-benefits’ sort of connections! For, my question is, a man, for instance, if he can put a grand colorful show to attract a woman to propagate his genes, shouldn’t the ‘much-sought-after item’, the love, be expressed as well in all its pomp & glory? I came across an article that claims that a man verbally saying “I love you” is the height of expression of his feeling for his woman! Is that true?
Let’s go to the core and take Darwin himself as a test-case and see how he executed his sexual selection process – actually, let’s cut to the chase and see how he expressed his love to his wife, Emma, and she to him , if at all love has a place in the evolution!
Having decided to marry (Emma, his cousin) on July 29, 1838 Darwin visited Emma and told her about his studies and ideas, about mutation of species, and so on. Emma was an unwavering religious woman, but still Darwin was not hesitant to express his contradicting views, and his skepticism about her beliefs openly! So, did she fear about this apparent incompatibility? Of course she did, she even discussed with him at length the differences, and her fears that this would separate them… With all this going on at the foreground, on November 11th the same year he returned back and boldly proposed to her! …and continued to discuss about his radical ideas! This looks like a guaranteed to fail sexual selection drama to me! Well, did she accept his proposal? YES on the same day! 10 days later she wrote a letter to him, a love letter
“When I am with you I think all melancholy thoughts keep out of my head but since you are gone some sad ones have forced themselves in, of fear that our opinions on the most important subject should differ widely… I thank you from my heart for your openness with me & I should dread the feeling that you were concealing your opinions from the fear of giving me pain. It is perhaps foolish of me to say this much but my own dear Charley we now do belong to each other & I cannot help being open with you…”
Who are these people? They were married a month later, January 29, 1839, and had 10 children , and lived for each other, even when the ‘death did its part’ to three of their children, to him and finally to her. When Darwin completed his celebrated work ‘On the origin of Species’ he gave it to her and asked her to read & decide on her own whether to burn it or publish it! She read, fully, and said to him “you have succeeded in making me your accomplice, may the Lord forgive both of us – go publish it”!
Rest is history.
Here is my conclusion that I believe: Every individual has a different way of expressing themselves when it comes to emotions, like love; it also depends on the person who expresses, and the person to whom it is expressed. There is NO such a thing called ‘one size fits all’.
In the above instance:
Emma feared about their strong difference of opinions, because she believed in afterlife, and hence was concerned and desired that they should “belong to each other” for eternity! Isn’t that a beautiful expression of love? Without speaking a word, that which is anxious about separation!
And, “I should dread the feeling that you were concealing your opinions from the fear of giving me pain…”. Isn’t this too a perfect expression of love? That which cares & speaks volumes in a simple sentence!
He laid his life’s worth of discovery on his wife’s hand, whether it be burnt or published. I think, this IS a stunning class-act expression of love; compare it with a cheap $10 bunch of red roses (with a fancy preprinted “I love you note”) that eventually ends up in a trash can, and then to the garbage dumpster!
And finally, the “… go publish” decision by Emma… Does it not scream “ I LOVE YOU my own dear Charley”? I was almost in tears when I wrote this last part!
So, don’t despair anyone out there, who expect the love-of-your-life to put-up a show, like those magnificent ‘celestial dance & tricks’ that the couples do for their sexual selection rituals; if you do, you will be disappointed every time! Love is a different species folks, you know your beloved like no one else does, those unique acts of love, subtle cues, moves, gestures of care, uh man… only you both know!
Bottom line: Love does NOT play by universal rules & standards that we set, my beloved friends, even if it happened to be Darwin!