It’s been said that a person can fall in love 3 times in their lifetime. This is a very startling and depressing statistic for me since I’ve already been in love 3 times. (To be honest I usually say 3 and 1/2. The half part is because to this day I’m still not sure about that one. Which most people would say means I wasn’t in love but I couldn’t have felt so tortured and depressed when it went away if I wasn’t.) Why do we only get 3? Why is there a cap on it? Does our heart not have room for more than that? Or do we become too jaded to allow for more? And what happens to those of us who have already exhausted all of our love options?!
The first great love we get is said to be puppy love. The love that looks amazing from the outside and seems to be right in so many ways. This is the high school or college sweetheart love. I had this love and it was such a special and meaningful relationship for me. But he cheated on me and I fell out of love with him and so that was that. I truly believed that I was going to marry him and would’ve felt comfortable with that choice if circumstances hadn’t made me feel otherwise. This is love that you will always look back on and smile about but know that it would’ve never worked out anyway because of how much you’ve changed as a person since then. It was lovely and it taught you how to love and be open but you had to move on.
The second great love is the painful love. The kind where your heart is a mess and you can’t seem to stop thinking about him/her even after they’ve been an asshole to you. It’s when you can never seem to communicate properly and the timing seems off and the fighting is non-stop. But you truly believe that you are meant to be with them. My painful love came in the form of someone who I was convinced was The One. And when it all went to shit I pretty much lost my faith in love all together for a while. My 1/2 love came in this category as well. I think it was just an extension of that previous love, but in a different man. One that I didn’t want as much. And I think I was just confused and projecting. But whatever it was was painful. This kind of love is when you learn all the lesson and what you truly want and need out of a partner.
The third great love is the love you never saw coming. The one that seems to develop so suddenly out of thin air. You weren’t even trying. In fact, you may have tried to fight it off from every angle. I had this with my most recent relationship which lasted 3 years, the longest I’ve ever been in one. He seemed to be all wrong for me on the surface but I gave him a chance and fell so madly, deeply in love that I could never imagine my life without him. But since we’ve been broken up I’ve surmised that he was always meant to be in my life, just not as my boyfriend. I connected on such a deep and intimate level with him and I don’t feel comfortable just letting him become someone I used to know. No. He has to be in my life forever, just in a different capacity.
So, if you don’t end up with any of the people who fell into your great love categories then what’s next? Do you either have to go back and make it work with one of these past lovers or are you destined to be single forever? I’ve decided that the 3 love rule is fucked and I refuse to accept.
Maybe some of just love more easily or more frequently than others. If someone is unmarried for 20 years of their adult life we can’t expect them to have only loved 3 people or less. That’s insane. Maybe the 3 types of love just keep repeating until they stick. So that must mean that another man will come along who will be someone I never saw coming again. And maybe that’s also why I had 2 painful loves. They repeated because I didn’t learn what I was meant to learn. Maybe I wasn’t completely ready for the love I never saw coming and therefore must be repeated. I hope so because otherwise I guess I’ll have to settle for being alone for the rest of my life.