Reconciling to the reality that the love you feel, is not felt in return

Reconciling to the reality that the love you feel, is not felt in return

The dagger is plunged without mercy, piercing the heart. Defying your Minister of Security, you have left battlements and palisades behind and revealed yourself, naked, vulnerable, all defenses down. The wound is near fatal.

The scenarios can vary. You are besotted with love for the man/woman of your wildest dreams. You are the prodigal child now sober and chastened and pleading for forgiveness. You are the father/mother who left children behind in pursuit of your own happiness and face them now as adults to make amends.

You reach out, your feelings fully exposed, the faltering words describing your love leaving you prone to the perilous nature of Damocles sword. The sentiment is pure, the feelings overwhelmingly emotional and guileless. There is no exit from the moment or the verdict.

And you are rejected with a bland stare and a hollow thank-you.

The blade has cut to the core. You stagger from the painful realization that regret and remorse are not always effective solvents for the blemishes of the past.

You wanted to connect on the deepest of levels as you had done perhaps a half dozen times in a lifetime: the last moments on earth with father and sister, eyes locked, no words needed to communicate your all-encompassing love; in the embrace of your teen-aged son crying uncontrollably in a plea for forgiveness; in the dead of the morning with your infant daughter nestled in your arms, soothed by her bottle and your gentle, devoted embrace. The cleansing had left you exalted, your relationship elevated to a symbiotic knowing that transcended time and place.

But it was not to be.

The response was polite, but the message is clear: “Not interested, too late, you had your chance and you abandoned me… you are not to be trusted and I will not give you the love you desire, your entreaties aside.”

What do you do then, after you have acknowledged responsibility for your behavior without qualifications; after you have made your amends without excuse or alibi; when all you ask is to be seen, not as you were, but as you are now?

Acknowledge the bleeding. Take solace in knowing the wound gradually will heal and the pain will lessen in time. Find comfort in sharing your pain - you are not the first to know the ache of offering love and being spurned.

Do not filter the conversation with rationalization; view its finality as welcomed closure; feel the relief that comes when you acquiesce to the realization that you are powerless over others. There is a freedom in concluding that you have done what you can, that it’s out of your hands now.

You will move on when you accept the futility of saying anything more because you have left nothing unsaid. It is no longer your story.

Therein lies the lone hope. Their story has yet to be told, and time is the profound healer.

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