“The struggles of heartache and loss from childhood, suffered into adulthood.”
If I would ever describe what love physically felt like, I would describe it as a warm and deliciously soft, weighted blanket covering me and shielding me from the harshness of the World. I feel that is how we all see love. We all long to have that weighted blanket on top of us, placed there by somebody we can look up to, respect and trust. Some see their mothers and fathers as their weighted blanket. Some have the weighted blankets from relatives, friends or significant others. If we are lucky, we will have more than one weighted blanket covering us and shielding us with love. I think that the more love we have in our lives, the happier we are. However, I do find certain viewpoints about love to be very compelling. Like:
- The level of importance we put on having love in our life.
- How our most treasured memories, or our deepest pain is because of love.
- How love is the universal language: it is understood and recognized by everyone who witnesses it.
- Love is not a practical need for survival and yet most of us can’t live without it. At some point, we all have risked something to find it, to keep it, or to control it.
- Some sacrifice so much to have it and when they do, they are never the same.
- Love can change people for better or for worse. It can take all that they have, or give them more than they ever dreamt of.
I remember when my point of view about love changed. I was just a small child. And just as any small child, I needed love and nurturing. At the time, my parents were my whole World. They were the epicenter of my life. I loved them more than anyone else because they were all that I knew. But that didn’t last. I was no more than five years old at the time. My parents had taken me to the park to play. I was playing with some other kids enjoying my time, not thinking about anything else. I remember distinctly glancing back toward the direction of the bench I knew my parents were sitting on the last time I saw them. But they weren’t there anymore. They were nowhere in sight. I felt my little heart skip a beat as a wave of panic and terror overcame me. I ran as fast as my small legs could carry me toward that bench, hoping that by the time I got there, I would see where they were. But I didn’t see them. They were gone and I was alone. I felt so frightened that I started to yell for them. I didn’t know anybody else there, and I didn’t know my way back home. All I could do was cry out and yell for my ‘mommy’ and ‘daddy’, hoping they would hear me and come running back towards me. The other parents looked at me in worry and pity. I wished they didn’t because it only made me feel worse. It made me feel even smaller and more vulnerable. A few of the parents came over to comfort me and ask me questions that I could not answer. The more they pestered me, the more I cried, until one of the kind ladies took my hand and reassured me that she would walk around with me until I spotted my parents. We walked for what felt like forever, and eventually my parents saw me and came over to get me. They thanked the lady and I went with my parents. I was grateful to have found them, but I was also angry. I didn’t show my parents my anger because I was afraid if I did, they would just leave me by myself again. I felt distrust toward them. So much so that no matter what I was doing, I would always make sure I never lost sight of them. Their love didn’t feel like a weighted blanket over me anymore. Now it felt more like thin, brittle paper being carried away by the wind.
I was right about their love. My childhood ended shortly after that incident and it only got worse. My parents divorced and their divorce was a vicious one. It was no longer about family and love, but about missed child support payments and my mother and father’s mistakes. They made too many and I hated them for it. My father became indifferent and distant and my mother became an alcoholic. I grew up fast, so I could take care of myself.
Because of the betrayal that I felt when it came to love, I developed a bitterness toward it. I saw it as a trick; a weapon people used to sabotage others and take advantage of them. As an adult, my mind didn’t change when it came to love, but I used it to prey on unsuspecting ‘love victims’ whom I thought were fools when it came to their ideas about what love actually was. I felt I had it all figured out, and therefore I would never be hurt again. I saw love as a game where I only played to win. I broke hearts before they broke mine, and I left them before being left. Love was there for my amusement until it was not amusing anymore. When things got too serious in relationships, or if I felt the relationship become too intimate, I left without a second thought. I dodged those whom wanted to give me their love and cover me up with their weighted blanket because weighted blankets were just an illusion.
My behaviors were all due to my self-denial. I refused to acknowledge all the hurt and the pain I still carried deep within my Soul. I was at the end of my rope with no hope for a happier life when one day I met my best friend. One look at him and I thought he would be another one of my ‘Conquests in Love’. But he wasn’t. He was much more than that. He showed me things about myself that nobody else did. He didn’t offer me his weighted blanket; he just stood next to me and watched me slowly piece together my own.
Over the years, I made my own weighted blanket. To do that, I had to purge a lot of resentments, heartache and pain I had from the past in order to make my blanket strong and durable. It was the most painful process of my life, but also the most rewarding. I did it because I realized how much I really loved myself. I chose to grow and thrive, and to not to give up. Whenever I had lost hope, my best friend stood by me and promised me he would never leave my side. He kept his promise.
I completed my weighted blanket and I always wear it. My best friend never left my side either. After seeing me at my worst so many times over, my best friend is still here like he promised he would be. He believed in me when I didn’t know how to believe in myself. Having somebody believe in me and love me so much helped me become successful in believing and loving myself.
In a way, he did cover me with his weighted blanket, didn’t he?