When we are young we think romantic love will conquer all.
We want it to dazzle us, overwhelm us, thrill us, glorify us. make us immortal. We long for it to sweep us up, enrapture us, take us in its arms and be happy ever after. We believe it will be the guiding light in our lives.
If we are lucky enough to find it, we discover it is indeed beautiful, magical, and breathtaking. It is pure heaven. We cherish it, nurture it. We want it to go on forever.
We expect too much of it.
We soon discover that it can also be flawed, capricious, one-sided, cruel, jealous, bitter, unforgiving, short-lived and illogical.
Sometimes it barely makes it through the summer.
It hurts us because we believed in it, and we trusted it.
Now we are older, we are wiser. We know that it can fool us, betray us, hurt us. It can tear us apart. So we become cautious, defensive, careful. We maintain our balance. We do not allow ourselves to fall. We distrust it, question it, torture it. No matter how much we desire it, we view it with cynical suspicion.
We compromise it, neuter it, dull it, pack it away in a box, say it is only for others. We let it slip from our lives. We think we are too old.
We deny it.
We become safe in the knowledge that romantic love cannot conquer us.
We believe we have conquered our longing for romance,
And yet we are still afraid of it.
And we still yearn for it.
© the author writing as Romantic Dominant
Art by Massimo Polello