Sunday, June 26, 2011

My Life is An Oprah Episode : Boundaries of Love?

Does love have boundaries?  Loving someone is having a relationship, even if it is one sided.....and there are boundaries and rules do apply.  But, before I identify what I think they are, and feel free to agree or disagree, first I will define where I believe no demarcation exists..  the state of falling in love, being in love, and staying in love.  With a partner, or with a friend.

In the past few days, NY State became the sixth state where gay and lesbians couples will be free to wed.  A few years ago, I had minimal opinions about this issue.  As a heterosexual, I did not have any emotional  investment in a decision; I wasn't against the idea, nor did I promote it.  Although I have several close gay friends, we did not speak too much about the freedom to wed.  As this issue became more and more visible to the public, I began to explore my own feelings.  In the spirit of full disclosure, I used to feel that the union of marriage should only be between a man and a woman.  And, with that as my core value, I realized that I, like so many others, were creating boundaries for other individuals, and where did those boundaries end?
Marriage, after all, is simply a legally binding contract, until or unless broken, between two individuals.  Sure, procreation may be part of that, if you believe it to be. But, that is not the only reason to be married.  So, New York State, you got it right.

Most of us, are, at some time or another, very judgmental when it comes to who we love.  Who am I, or anyone else, to decide who someone falls in love with? One doesn't have to search far to find a book, or movie that depicts this scenario.  LOVE KNOWS NO BOUNDARIES.  Why is it so difficult to accept same sex couples, or interracial couples, older man/younger woman, or younger man/older woman? And, dare I say, sometimes a married person falls in love with someone else.  It happens. We really have not evolved as much as we'd like to think we have.   There are so many criticisms; aren't there more important things to focus on?

We really can not identify what "makes" us fall in love with someone.  For me, it's the attraction I feel in the beginning. Others may feel that regardless of how you feel at first, you can learn to love someone.  I say no; you can only enhance what is already there.  I have no preset ideas....I don't care about the size of their bank account or their home, or how they look or dress.  However, having said that, I would not be attracted to someone who is less than well-groomed, and I find laziness a character flaw.  Having met any or all of one's expectations, and you find yourself in love, what are the boundaries?  And why have these boundaries?  A person is not truly free without having something to hang onto.  A balloon usually has a string attached, but, if it is not clutched, it floats away; aimlessly.  Same with love.  The boundaries are pretty basic:  accept love when given, but give love without demanding it be returned.  Love deserves honesty and kindness. Love deserves boundless hope. Love deserves joy, and love should provide a soft place to fall.

 Love has no other desire but to fulfill itself.
But if you love and must needs have desires, let these be your desires:
To melt and be like a running brook that sings its melody to the night.
To know the pain of too much tenderness.
To be wounded by your own understanding of love;
And to bleed willingly and joyfully.
To wake at dawn with a winged heart and give thanks for another day of loving;
To rest at the noon hour and meditate love's ecstasy;
To return home at eventide with gratitude;
And then to sleep with a prayer for the beloved in your heart and a song of praise upon your lips.
 - Kahlil Gibran....my favorite poet.