A couple of days back when I was talking to a friend, I was asked, “Are you ready to settle down?”. This question has been bothering me for a while. Like that little piece of food stuck in your teeth. Okay, bad analogy. But it’s been bothering me that much! And this question is the genesis of this blog piece.
Firstly, I questioned myself, what does it mean to be settled? Is only getting married a way of ‘settling’ down? Is a fat bank balance a sign that you are ready to settle down? Is anchoring the ship what it means to settle down? Nope. Not in my mind. For the longest time, I was searching for love, finding love with that one person and riding into our ‘happily ever after’. Being the unfortunate practical person that I am, I knew that there is no such thing like that. But you know how life has these evil ways of making you a hopeless romantic while also being a thorough realist. So that you can tear your mind apart whenever you have some free time deciding whose team you actually are on.
Cut to the chase. I realized very recently that I’m no longer looking for love. I found love! I found love when my colleague leaving work said she’ll miss my hugs. I found love when a stray cat walks me home every night and sleeps outside till morning. I found love when I feel deep inside that I’ve helped build someone up, and not tear them down. I found love when I see a twinkle in my friend’s eyes when I dance. I found love when my mother tells me that she absolutely detests me but she’d rather die and be reborn as my child than go heaven. I found love when he cried while breaking up, because it was too darn difficult to leave. I have found love. It keeps me warm and sometimes it keeps me awake at night. But I’m not looking for love anymore. Because love is not what lasts through the years. Respect – now that is a different story.
In the last 10 years of my life, I’ve seen enough heartbreak (not mine) and I’ve seen enough broken relationships (again not mine). Have I become a cynic? No. I’ve just realized that love can be nurtured and you can learn to love. Hell! You can even teach to love. But I can’t say the same for respect. Relationships – some work out, some don’t. Honestly we only need one to work out fine. But when you lack basic respect for people that’s when you can never really love them completely. When did it become okay to abuse someone for fun? Why did you take someone toying with your life so lightly? Why is it okay for him to make you feel terrible about yourself? What made you think you needed to beg for love or for respect?
Seeing, hearing and experiencing these things makes you question the very fabric of the whole ‘finding someone’ system. And I’ve never been so much at peace, knowing that I’m not looking for love anymore. I already found love. I have enough love already and I know more is coming. I’m looking for a friend to partner up with. Someone who is as lost as me, yet as sure as me that in the end not being alright, is also alright. That might not make sense to a lot of people. But strangely it makes more sense to me than any physics equation that I can prove on paper. I guess now, I’ve settled down. Truly.
Baby, I’ve found love and now I’m home bound. Wherever that is.