Sitting on my therapist’s couch, I was comfy and cozy for about 30 to 40 minutes in our one-hour session. She asks me, “Do you think love is a choice or feeling?” I told her, “I think it’s both.”
Like most things, one doesn’t have to be excluded from the other. I know that the fail impact of the choice or feeling leads us down the heartbreak boulevard. I think you should know what love is first.
What Is Love
To me, love is like water. I say that because I can’t figure out how else to explain it. Water can help with growth, but too much of it can lead to destruction. Some people will tell you that love hurts; others will say it is supposed to be harmonious. Water can fill into anything and flow smoothly. But of course, it can also pick up at a vicious pace that will break through anything in its way. It becomes ice cold and scorching hot. It’s hard to control and easy to overflow and drown in. That is the best way I can explain it. It’s beautiful because of how it’s ever-changing but also deadly for the same reason. It is all about how you choose to use it, which is where the complexity is.
Choice vs. Feeling
First off, it should never be a battle between the two, but we’re adults. We know how it goes.
Looking at recreational activities would be an easy web diagram to make for most adults. You choose it because it feels good and vice versa.
My Short Story
Now when it comes to people, that’s a different story. My therapist followed the initial question with, “Do you think you made a bad choice after following the feeling?” I said no. Long story short, the relationship we discussed was healthy, and everything was mutually beneficial. Nothing was toxic. But then — boom, it was gone. It was confusing because it just evaporated out of nowhere. I got ghosted from a relationship, and no one knows or will ever know why. I said no because there were no bad times I spent with her. Nothing I regret or feel terrible about, but it ended in confusion. Either way, I know people are always conflicted between the two.
People love telling you who you should choose because they say, “Don’t they make you feel like ___?” Listen, it’s easy to make a wrong choice regarding love. People are the best promoter for themselves, even if they know it or not. Then love is linked to other feelings and emotions that give off natural, indescribable highs. That’s why it is not difficult to find yourself in a relationship with manipulators or narcissists. Then sometimes or most times, when we are younger, we choose people for reasons that don’t even give us the feeling. Ideas that come from TV or unsolicited advice, or people who are in hidden, toxic relationships.
The feeling is harder to explain. It just happens. A quiet moment arrives, and you look at the other person and say, “Aww, shit! I think I…dammit!” in your head. I’m merely joking, but you get it. If you choose to love the person already, you might not get that. I’m not going to say the feeling should be this or that because we love differently. Who are you putting your love into; do they reciprocate it? The sentiment is going to be like a dam breaking more than a rollercoaster.
The feeling can reoccur because of who you are choosing to love is a ghost from the past. The reason people are scared of love because they don’t want to make the wrong decision again or experienced one-sided love. People are hidden gems or viruses. Unfortunately, the complexity is in the people or person just as much love itself. Everyone trying to surf through the waves of past and present choices and feelings to conjure a real lover. Is it a choice? Yeah, you should choose to love everyone because we all need it to grow. In return, we can hope it is reciprocal. If not, the feeling is going to rain on you one day, and you’re not going to trust if it is about to heal or drown you. The passion can always be traced back to something we thought we had or we thought was missing. But we were chasing other emotions that give a similar euphoria. Don’t be so scared of either, I know that is easier said than done. Also, I’m not going to tell you to jump in with no regard for any relationship. I will say to you love is both a feeling and a choice; it is also an action. Love can feel harmonious and peaceful, but it can be chaotic and stressful, too, if you choose and vice versa. Take time to figure it out because real love will never fade away. I hope one day you find someone or something that makes you experience both with no consequence.