Whether you search for it endlessly, whether you risk everything you have, whether you put yourself out there completely, the truth is, you won’t find love until you’re ready to accept it.
You can make someone feel incredible. You can hold their hand when they feel scared or anxious, you can pull them in close when you know they’re afraid. You can stay up all night talking to them and feel completely exhausted but still not want to go to bed. You can let all of these wonderful things you’re giving to them transform you in ways you never thought possible, but they won’t give them to you in return until you’re truly ready to let them.
You can give what you think is love, but it won’t feel real until it’s reciprocated, and if you’re not ready to accept it, the person you’re handing this ‘love’ to, won’t hand it back to you.
Because it’s possible to be simultaneously willing to give love and not willing to receive it. And the reason you’re not willing to receive it is likely because you don’t think you deserve it. You’ve somehow convinced yourself you’re not worthy of love, and you’ve been so convincing that the person you wish would love you back believes it too. You’ve persuaded them that you’re exceptionally unfit for love because you don’t believe it yourself. You don’t think love is something you deserve.
And since you can’t accept love, you give to them until you’ve got nothing left, and then you wonder why they withdraw from you so quickly. How could they leave you after you emptied yourself into them? Real love isn’t meant to empty you. Real love is meant to fill you with all of the things that are different from the bits and pieces of yourself you’ve given away. It doesn’t fill you entirely, but it fills you with the things you didn’t already have. The truth, however, is that you have to be willing to let it all in.
You won’t find life-changing love until you’re ready to accept it. Until you like yourself enough to let someone else like you. Until you’re ready to let all the heartbreak go only to risk being heartbroken again. Until you accept the fact that every time your heart was broken the rest of you remained intact, and the rest of you pushed through life as usual. You deserve love, no matter what you’ve been through, no matter how many times your heart has been broken, no matter what anyone else has told you or made you believe, you deserve it. Believe that, and the next time someone attempts to give love back to you, you’ll find it much easier to accept.