“If we’re still in love, why are we torturing ourselves by being apart?”
Answering this question is difficult because essentially it asks, “Why is love not enough?” It calls into question something that so many of us have been taught for decades—that if you love someone enough, everything else will fall into place. As if by magic, all other obstacles melt away through the sheer power of love. It also ignores an important caveat: we don’t always love things that are good for us.
Sometimes the people we fall in love with are reflections of what we lack. We fall in love with what a person can offer. We fall in love with a person’s potential. We’re blinded by the feeling of their arms wrapped around our waists, by the warmth of their presence beneath our blankets, by the scent of their shampoo. They come to know our quirks and how we like our pasta cooked. We come to know their schedules and their favorite chicken marinades. We fall in love with the comfort and the stability and the known.
But sometimes, this isn’t what we need to continue to grow. We can love someone with our whole self and it still won’t be enough if that love isn’t the right love to perpetuate our growth. If we have lessons left to be learned about ourselves that this love doesn’t teach us, it won’t be enough. The hardest pill to swallow in these situations? Sometimes, the lessons this love teaches us is through the heartbreak of its ending.
If we’re still in love, why are we torturing ourselves by being apart? Because this is how we transform. This is how the universe tells us: you aren’t done yet. When we lose those we love the most, we learn about ourselves. We learn what we need in relationships once the rose-colored glasses have been ripped from our noses. We need more than warmth and someone who knows how to cook our pasta, as wonderful as those things feel. The pain transforms us when we learn that it’s purposeful.
Hopefully, we learn that everyone comes into our lives for a reason. There are no coincidental meetings and everyone has a purpose that, somewhere along the spectrum, pushes us closer to the person we’re meant to become. I’ve learned that sometimes, we need our souls to go supernova to unleash our internal strength, to empower us, to spread our light in so many more places than where it originated. For all of the pain, all of the confusion, all of the anger, I know that I have so much left in me to give to the world.
So, if we’re still in love, why are we torturing ourselves by being apart? Because we are still becoming. And we aren’t done yet.