I feel broken most days. I feel this pull inside me…like I want to want to love, but I don’t know how. Am I afraid? Do I think that if I love something, I will lose it? Or that I will ruin it? I already ruin things, so what would the difference be in this case? A while ago I was reading about “love languages”. Apparently everyone has one. When I picked up the book, I felt doubt swirling inside me. I could hear Ed taunting me, saying “sure, that’s a nice idea, but come on you can’t believe that you have a love language.” I admit, I believed him at the time. But I still looked into the idea a little further.
Here is a list of the five love languages:
- Quality Time
- Words of Affirmation
- Acts of Service
- Physical Touch
If I did have a “love language”, it would probably be “acts of service”. In the past, I had come to the conclusion that I was not capable of having a real language of love. I don’t know how to accept love, or give love. When someone does something nice for me, I am thankful, but I always feel this cloak of guilt around me afterward. I feel bad that they have sacrificed something for me, whether it be time, money, thoughts…I will accept prayers though. I’ll always accept prayers. I suppose I accept gifts under the right circumstances, but often, I find myself thinking that the person shouldn’t have done whatever it was they did for me. I feel like I owe them, or like I don’t deserve their kindness. Why can’t I just accept things and let them be? If a person wants to do something for me, it’s not always because they pity me, I know that. After all, when I do something for someone, that is rarely, if ever the motive behind my actions.
It’s hard to explain how I digest love. How I react and don’t react. I hate it. I wish I could just be and let be. But something in me is always pushing back, always feeling smothered. When I was reading a non-fiction book about body image not long ago, the author mentioned that she, like many other eating disordered patients, had a tough time accepting love. She also had a tough time with trust, and touch. I will be the first to admit I flinch if someone reaches towards me. It’s quite visible. I don’t trust easily, I would just as soon do something for myself, rather than entrust someone else with a task. I am quite content sitting alone for hours. I have actually cried in frustration when someone I love did something nice for me, simply because I was mad they had thought of me. Who am I to say someone can’t do a kind act? Who am I to think that I am better off doing things my way, in an attempt to keep everything from falling apart? I know part of it is OCD. Part of it is anxiety. Part of it is definitely Ed. He is a jealous suitor, one who is not eager to let others step in and show they care. But I can’t help but think that I should stop myself from having these feelings. If I weren’t so selfish, I could. My anti-depressant that I am on has helped a lot, I must admit. Is it evening out my emotions? Feeling my feelings for me? Am I even real? Most days I feel real, but there are always going to be days that I struggle more than others.
I think in the end, I will owe an apology to everyone who has ever known me. If it isn’t because I haven’t loved enough, it is because I have not loved well. I have not trusted others. I have cringed when someone leans in for a hug. There is no way for those around me to not take this personally. And for these things, I am ashamed to admit, I am at fault completely. Please don’t tale these reactions personally. I am trying to fight back. Trying to show Ed that he is so wrong. This is just one more thing I must learn. How to love.