Updated: Feb 13, 2020
I used to think falling in love was this magical experience where you met someone and had this intense physiological reaction. There was a spiritual enlightenment that would produce undeniable confirmation that your search was over. I used to think falling in love was this ethereal experience where you literally fell uncontrollably into a blob of emotions that connected you to this other person. That once you started investing in another person, you couldn’t help but fall and pursue permanency. I was definitely a victim of the Disney effect: the social conditioning that teaches little girls that “someday your prince will come” and when he does, you will be in the wilderness, minding your own business. He will know your favorite song and sweep your off your feet.
This whole set up is a recipe for narcissistic abuse... They are studying your weakness and areas of vulnerability from a distance, so they can use that to control you. But that’s a different blog for a different day.
I don’t believe in falling in love. I don’t believe in the idea of meeting someone and not being in control of the outcome. I will not give anyone the excuse or the luxury of leaving your actions and emotions to chance.
No, I don’t believe in falling in love. I believe in walking into love. Slowly, deliberately, and intentionally. I believe in meeting someone and feeling that spark, that instinctual reaction that tells you “stay with that person and see where it goes”. I believe in signs that light the dark pathway that encourage you to go in their direction. But I believe that you walk that path with your eyes just as open as your heart.
I believe that you walk into love the way you walk around a duck pond in the park. You set your boundaries and intentions and take a few steps. You stop to enjoy the moment and to ensure you are keeping pace with the other person. You move further along and increase your level of vulnerability. You share bits about your past and how that shapes who you are. You share your thoughts about the future, from what size house you want, to business goals, to the many places you want to travel. All the way, you are checking to ensure your partner is still walking in tandem with you.
You show up as your full self. You get angry, you get sad, you get unmotivated. You allow your partner to see your full range of emotions. You allow them to decide for their self if they can handle it. You manage your own fear of them leaving because you’re too much, or too little for them.
This means that before you can walk into love, you must spend time alone with yourself to even figure out who you are and how you can present that to another person. It doesn’t mean you have to be single for some distinct period of time, but it does mean that you have to slow down long enough to eliminate your distractions and figure out who you are. You have to acknowledge your history of trauma in any type of relationship: family, friends, and dating.
[Create 3 lists]
1. Hello, my name is...
2. My partner will be:
3. I am special because...
Walking into love means being comfortable with building the kind of healthy and stable relationship that you desire. It means being patient enough to build it brick by brick, with a sober view of what each brick entails.
It ensures that the feelings you have for this person are genuine and not produced out of fear. It ensures you chose this partner because they are who you desire and not because you can’t tolerate the silence of being alone.
And walking into love means you accept that there will be times where you find what you’re looking for, yet the circumstances don’t support the relationship. It’s being strong enough to walk away from what feels absolutely perfect, but isn’t actually best for you. It’s trusting God enough to listen when He’s telling you it’s time to let it go and trust that what’s for you won’t pass you.
Walking into love means you set healthy boundaries.