True Love! We all want it...but what is it?

Love is a complex emotion.
Love is a complex emotion.
True love  -  follow your heart?
True love - follow your heart?

Matters of the Heart - Personal Reflections

Welcome friends and followers! Glad you are here. This hub article is a bit different from most of my hubs. Instead of sharing some of my youthful adventures, humorous articles, or on the Bible and Christianity, I am going to explore a new area for me...that dealing with the strongest emotion ever...love! This is a personal experience of mine, not someone else's. It is not something really to discuss and definitely not a debatable issue; just some personal thoughts I have about something occurring in my life at this moment in time. The names are changed to protect the identity of other people, except mine, of course.

Hopefully this will help you...it isn't advice, but just something for you to think about when and if it happens to you!

LOVE - such a powerful emotion and one that is more desirable than any other. Much of our culture is based on this concept. Everywhere you look, love is usually involved. Advertising is directed to make us more attractive to the opposite sex. So many entertainment venues are geared to that wonderful concept. Even God values Love above almost anything...saying, you have nothing if you don't have love.

I don't know about you, but love is very important to anyone's health and well being. Love is such a wide range of feelings. It can create pure joy, or make you totally depressed. Love feels good, can make you cry, get angry, hate...you name it. Almost every emotion we have, love can effect it. I believe love is truly one of the best blessings God can give to a man and woman. True love is rare, but it is possible. But like anything worthwhile, it takes time to sprout, grow, and finally mature if you are fortunate.

Do I believe in true love? If you had asked me that 10 years ago, I probably would have said, not really. Today I would say, yes, and it can be achieved if both partners really want it. But, it will take time to nurture and strengthen it.

Round 1 - Love is betrayed.

Most of you know that I am single, well, actually divorced...not once, but twice. I never really dated much since I was focused on getting a career going and just put matters of the heart on the back burner. I have always wanted to have a wife, have a family, or what we call the American Dream! But until I turned 40, my chances of having that were dwindling fast!

As I was nearing my 40th birthday, even though my teaching career was doing well, there was something missing in my life...a partner, spouse, companion...whatever term you wish to use. By that age, most people have been married for years, have children, etc., but not me. I was late to have the love bug bite me. But it found me, well, I thought it had. The internet age was just starting, so most things were very limited. Love found me first in the most unlikely place I could imagine...a computer bulletin board. It was on a service called Prodigy and they had text games that you could play...online video games were still a thing of the future. I loved Star Trek and there were several groups of people that played this game by posting notes on what they would do in a given situation. Anyway, people played this game and actually began to form real life relationships.

As you know, I love to write, so this game was my cup of tea. I started out as an ensign and worked my way up to command of a starship over many months of play! My writing style was better than most, and my 'crew' loved to play this game since I kept them all involved with our missions.

Well, one girl joined our group and she was a gifted writer also...her name was Christine (not her real name). She eventually became my first wife and it all started on this game. Our characters became romantically involved..even posted some steamy scenes on the BB towards the end. Kind of like long distance role playing. Well, we played this game every night and if any of you have role played...part of your real self starts to come out. Well, it did. When our characters fell in love, Christine and I began to also. Big mistake #1.

Over the next 5 months or so, we grew closer and closer. We began calling each other on the phone...no Instant Messaging or texting back then. I had $400 phone bills...I was really in love with Christine and I never had seen her for real...just a photograph she sent me...so actually I fell in love with a photo...dumb huh? We finally met after talking and playing Star Trek for 5 months and seemed to hit it off. She lived in Washington state and I was 2000 miles away. We had a long distance relationship which was very difficult sometimes. When you are in love, you sure don't want to be away from the other person, as you know. We made mistakes, both of us, and we rushed into marriage way too quickly. We really didn't know each other...you could count the number of times we were together on your hands and feet before I moved to Washington. We started off a serious relationship, marriage, and had no foundation at all, and didn't really know each other either.

Naturally, we learned after some time that we were not compatible. In fact, we were totally different people. She was a party girl and loved to flirt with men. I was happy to just stay home after a long day at work and didn't want to party. Being married, at least in my view, should end partying like a college student. She had two children, both under 10 and I thought her behavior was terrible! We grew further apart as time went by. She continued to flirt with men right in front of me and she knew it really hurt me deeply. She didn't care...she had fun and the hell with anyone else, even her so called husband....me! She even would go somewhere with her friends for a couple days at a time and I had no clue where she was. Very immature and had no sense of what a marriage should be. I really felt bad for the 2 children.

My love was ripped to shreds by that point. What was once wonderful, now had me completely miserable. We grew apart more and more each day, but one day I was totally betrayed in the worst possible way...she cheated on me and I caught her red handed. Everything died at that point. Unless you have experienced this, you have no idea how destructive and horrible it is. Of course I was upset, mad, angry and felt like trash. I wanted to ring both of their necks, but was just too stunned to even say a word. I walked out and never saw her again in person.

Love? Not this time. I gave up so much and got nothing but a betrayal and severe pain. I gave up a good job, moved halfway across the country and gave my heart to a liar and cheat. Who is to blame...myself for not being wise and ignoring many warning signs.

All in the name of love. So, my first experience with 'true' love was a total disaster.

Marriage #1 - Epic Failure

Round 2 - Love is abusive

After Christine, I tried to put my life back together. It was difficult since I had no spouse to help me. I was depressed, angry and withdrawn. Luckily my job pulled me out of it and things were better...until I met future wife #2. It was the new Millennium...a new century that provided new hope and change and in 2000, I met Melissa ( again, not her real name.) It had been almost 8 years since Christine and I went our separate ways....8 years to mend a broken, trampled heart....8 years to even think about dating a woman again. After Christine practically destroyed me in every way, Melissa somehow broke through the barriers I had built up for almost a decade! Melissa was now in my life! How in the world did she do it?

Well, this blasted computer got me into another mess. well, not the computer, but my stupidity. This time I met Ms. Wonderful on a dating service. She did live in the same town, so that was much better than Christine that lived over 2000 miles away. We talked on an Instant Messenger service and things were okay. Slowly my defenses crumbled under her 'magic' touch. We began dating and then...BAM, I got into another mess. You would think I would have learned my lesson with Christine, but when cupid starts using your butt as target practice, all common sense seems to disappear. We jumped into marriage again, way too soon and things started to go wrong. Man, I needed my head examined then.

Melissa was MUCH nicer than Christine, granted, but it wasn't good enough. After time, this sweet lady turned into the Hag from Hades. I was criticized for every little thing I did, and I was never a top priority. Verbal abuse was an understatement of what I put up with. She also had a huge spending problem...addicted to shopping would be an understatement! Spouses are supposed to support each other, not tear them down. Things continued to deteriorate and we separated. I needed time to think and be alone. I hated doing this, but she was driving me nuts! Her abuse continued, her spending totally out of control, she began using sexual intimacy as a weapon...using it to control me to get what she wanted! If I didn't do what she wanted, then nothing in the intimacy department...It was pure torture! If I hadn't separated and got away from this tremendous strain, I would have lost my mind! Even when separated, the abuse continued...intensified now because I wasn't there for her to attack on a daily basis. How did she do this? She used email! Since she could not give me a tongue lashing in person, she used her computer! She was out of control on eBay by this time...just glad she didn't ruin all my credit with her insane spending . She divorced me through the mail so that was that. I again ignored many warning signs prior to marriage, and foolishly had to learn another harsh lesson. So....

Marriage #2 - Epic Failure!

Round 3? Hopefully NOT Strike 3, you are out!

It is now the present, the year 2010, about 8 years since my last divorce. I haven't really dated at all in nearly 10 years. Oh, the occasional date once in a while, but nothing more. I will tell you some were unbelievable and totally bizarre! Another hub perhaps! But that started to change...the itch to find lasting love returned! Drat...that darn love bug is after my tush again! Or is it that little dwarf with a bow and arrow using my butt as target practice? Someone needs to clip his wings! I never would have dreamed I would even consider dating again after the two disasters from the past! If any future relationship ends in disaster this time, it will be STRIKE 3, I am out!!!

It is amazing how something you swore you would never do again, you wind up doing again!! Never say never!...think that was James Bond. Wanting love and not being alone are very strong forces that can get you into trouble quickly. I went on the internet dating services--you would think I would have learned by now wouldn't you?---again and began 'shopping'. But like I said in my other hub about online dating, that wasn't my soul purpose to find a wonderful lady. Dating online kind of reminds me of buying meat at the butcher shop. All these nice Grade A, prime women are there in the window for you to see and then you just pick one or two and begin talking to them. No offense ladies! It did remind me of 'window shopping' LOL

Will the next time be the gold at the end of the rainbow? I have no clue, but I do have hope that the next time, if there is a next time, I will find that special gal I have been searching for so long! It is another risk..YES, but I have to take the risk...the reward is totally worth it...having a genuine relationship with a woman that truly cares and wants to be with me overrides the risk.

Now don't get me wrong. I am not against internet dating. Some people find love and have great relationships and marriage. I think it is rare, but it does happen. My parents had it and guess that is why I desire it so much! I saw what real love was and it wasn't easy sometimes....my mom and dad had some awful times, but their love sustained them and my brother and I also! I know there is true love though I have denied it...I saw it, experienced it with my parents my whole life. If I didn't think true love was possible, I would not have tried it or be trying it again.

I have met a few gals on these websites off an on for a few years now...I go on these sites for a little while and if nothing happens, just stay off for months or more...then I return at a later time and try again. It is frustrating to do this intermittent searching, but I won't stop until I find 'THE ONE'. I am hopeful, a little scared, and sure don't want to be heartbroken again, but the past has taught me many things. Hopefully, I did finally learn the lessons those past relationships taught me. Take my time and not rush! Yep, those lessons got through my thick skull finally! About time, huh? :)

I am doing it right this time.. I should say, my potential lady and I are going to do this right, when and if it happens. This time any future relationship is going to have a firm foundation. Solid ground on which to build a relationship that will have , and hopefully, God willing, TRUE love like my parents had will be the result. Stuff it, Cupid...I am not going to be taken in by your lousy arrows this time! When you want something so badly, it is just so difficult not to abandon all reason and take a huge gamble, but my past is halting my impulsiveness this time, plus some insight.

Here is the 'bottom line'...I don't want to grow older without a mate. I don't want to die alone and not experience a true, earthly love. My parents were married over 43 years until my dad passed away..and I want that too. I know I won't have 40 years, but want that lady to grow old with. Will this happen? I really want it to, but there is no guarantee. I am hoping the next time it will be TRUE love and not some phony imitation. As the Bible says...Love is patient, love is kind, love is forgiving. It does not say, "Jump in with both feet with your eyes closed and hope for the best.

Love...it can be beautiful or ugly, warm and comforting or cold and painful. Love can bring two souls together or destroy them beyond recognition. Extremes yes!...risky yes!, since you have to totally let your defenses down and give your heart and soul, so to speak, to each other. The problem lies with what that other person does with your heart...will he/she treasure and keep it safe and secure, or will they abuse and use it to further some selfish motives? It is a gamble and many times the innocent get severely hurt. I know...I have been in that place many times over the years, but you know....love still is the most desirable thing to me! Even with all the pain and heartache, if I do find love, all the bad things I have endured over my lifetime will be worth it. That is, as the song goes, "The POWER of LOVE!"

So, is there such a thing as...True love? Yes, it is possible and there is such a thing. True love...so wonderful and priceless...definitely worth going after.

If you are in love, respect it and keep it alive. Ignore it and it will fade. If you have love, you have one of God's best gifts you could ever have! Do NOT take it for granted...it is priceless and no value can be placed on it! But, you have to work together and give love attention every day. If you can, love will be the most awesome thing you will ever know!!! My parents showed me it takes effort...they always showed each other love and it just made what they had stronger and stronger. I had good teachers but until my relationships failed, I didn't learn the lessons. I know I am willing to do whatever is necessary to experience true love...I haven't yet, but I am still hopeful. Loneliness is fine for some, but not for me. Been there....done that ....no more. God never meant for man to be alone...He created Eve for that very purpose...to provide Adam an earthly companion and a mate to comfort, encourage, and face life together. True love....yes, it is worth working for but like anything else, it isn't free and takes dedication and determination to achieve. True, everlasting love is what I want...don't you?

Your first love may not be your true love.
You may lose your first love, but you will never lose your TRUE love.
Even when your true love goes away, don’t lose hope, because your true love will always come back to you!

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Comments 16 comments

Dave Mathews profile image

Dave Mathews 5 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

True Love is so difficult to define and even more difficult to find and hold onto.


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

I certainly agree. At least I did see it with my parents...what an example they were to me. Of course, I long for that experience too, but so far it has eluded me completely. I guess it come down to this...many people don't want to make a commitment...no wonder divorce is so prevalent! Too easy to end a marriage, no morality and just plain selfishness. Guess that is why I am alone. I gave to my partners all the time, but got nothing in return but grief and heartache. Me, me, me, not us, us, us! Greed and selfishness...a death sentence for any marriage or relationship. I may have to just accept that I will be alone for the rest of my life, but there is no way I am going to settle for less than God's best....true love. If I can't have that, I don't want anything else..it is inferior and valueless.


Wealthmadehealthy profile image

Wealthmadehealthy 5 years ago from Somewhere in the Lone Star State

Love is God, God is Love, and in our praise and worship of Him, we experience His Love, which I feel is the greatest of all. Blessings today and always Knightheart....


c-bless 5 years ago

My sincere best wishes for you as you build your foundation of love brick by brick. May three times be the charm. Thank you for sharing such a personal story...


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

WMH: Hi there. I appreciate your comment as I always do. You have really been a blessing to me these past 2 months, bringing me here and teaching me the ropes. Love sure has its up and down, but God's perfect love beats all. But, while we here, God wants us to have earthly love as well.

Take care, my friend.


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

C-Bless. Don't think I know you...or maybe I am going senile! LOL Thank you for stopping by my hub and for your sincere wishes. Building brick by brick is the wisest thing anyone can do to form that crucial foundation. Without that firm foundation, love and anything else built on top will come crashing down around our ears. I not only hope, but am praying that this third time is the charm. Take care and thanks again for stopping in!


Wealthmadehealthy profile image

Wealthmadehealthy 5 years ago from Somewhere in the Lone Star State

Good afternoon Knightheart: Yes, this is why God created woman, to be a helpmeet to man. But in this day and age, finding the proper helpmeet for a person should always include the foremost thing.....Love of God and adherence to His Law. Without a solid formation in this rock, I do know many relationships will fail. So in searching, this should be a key point: Does the other person have the same Love for Him as you do? Blessings Knightheart, today and always....my friend in Christ.


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

Hi, my friend. I think this is not the proper place to talk about this private issue, but I am really confused right now about this since something happened today that really upset me and caught me completely by surprise. Thank God friends are around to pick up the pieces when a bomb explodes in your face!


stars439 profile image

stars439 5 years ago from Louisiana, The Magnolia and Pelican State.

It will all work out for you. You are a wonderful person. Good qualities do not go un noticed. Be your sweet self. Enjoy each , and every relationship for what it is. God Bless You precious friend.


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

Hey Stars. Thanks for the comment and the compliment! It sure does seem the saying, "Nice guys finish last" has the ring of truth to it, at least according to the world's standards. Thinking about those worldly standards, sure has driven this world to the brink of disaster, which will come in its ultimate form soon, I believe. Oh well, I am not going to change and if women don't want a real man with some principles, morals, and kindness, well, they are just dumb! If they like the 'bad boy', they can have the abuse, the infidelity, the heartache and the pain! Enjoy gals! LOL Thanks again for your support and kind words, my friend. In Heaven, it won't matter, since the Creator will love us all perfectly and any earthly 'love' will be like rubbish, for the most part. Right now I am praying for the 9/11 memorial service at Ground Zero. I have been hearing rumors that the Mayor is forbidding prayer and any Christian views to be expressed! How outrageous if true. If one Muslim is allowed to speak about their views and lies, I am going to blow a gasket! They have a purpose that history plainly reveals. A 3 stage plan to destroy all non Muslim believers...it is a fact and this country better wake up to the threat before this country is under Sharia Law! The first stage is pretty much in place...tolerance of the Muslim faith, and stage 2 is in progress..infiltration of key positions in our infrastructure to plant their evil motives. They have done this for centuries and the evidence is clear from other countries that are now "Muslim" control. These people are dangerous and this country better get their heads out of their butts and pay attention!


Ingenira profile image

Ingenira 5 years ago

You can really "write" or "talk". This article has more than 3000 words ! Amazing !


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 5 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

Well, I have been known to be very 'long winded'...guess Ingenira: It is true! Being brief is NOT a quality I have... LOL Someone suggested I should be either a pastor or a politician. The first one, perhaps, but I would never want to be a politician...kind of like the same group as lawyers...bottom feeders. Hehe. I know I tend to get wordy, but so many people misunderstand or misread things so I sometimes go overboard to make my meaning 'crystal clear', but of course, when my writing gets too long, people just skim so I guess over explaining is useless. ROFLOL. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!


galfromla 3 years ago

I understand where you are coming from. My first husband was emotionally abusive. He made me feel like I was the worst person on earth. All I ever wanted was his love. The sad thing about it was that I thought this was love. I thought you treated people like this when you loved them. He literally dumped me one day for another woman. I had nothing, but the clothes on my back, a little money, and a few knickknacks. God provided and I made it through my first heart crush. God sent me another man and he was everything I wanted in a man, kind, gentle, soft spoken, and just adorable. He molested my granddaughter. There goes heartache no 2. I believed that I was defective and unloveable just like my first husband told me. I did not believe anyone would love me. I pray one day that I will find that man if it is the Lord's will. I am content to be single or I am content to live my sunset years with the man God sends my way. I agree with everything you have said, but one thing really struck a chord for me. When I was with these men I wanted to spend every minute with them. I enjoyed being around them. The first one I learned to fear, but I wanted to be around him. I am still scared of him. I always had the feelings but they were not returned. Prayerfully, by the grace of God I will find that love before I leave this world. If not, I know I will find it in my final resting place. In fact I have found it here in Christ, but I want the physical touch and someone to tell me that I am special and make me feel that way. Is that too much to ask for? I am tired of the head games as you are. I want someone who is real or no one at all. Maybe I deviated from the topic, but you stirred something inside of me that needed to come out. I was beginning to think that I was odd wanting to spend time with my husbands. Do not mind about being long winded. I am enjoying your comments so very much. They are answering some of the questions I have asked God. Keep them coming. You are blessing my heart.


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 3 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

Hey there and thank your for stopping by. As you can see, I wrote this article nearly 2 years ago, but the memories never go away from the bad experiences, mostly the sadness that seems to linger when you know you went 'above and beyond' for former partners and have nothing but sorrow to show for it.

I appreciate your willingness and courage to mention such personal experiences...I know it isn't easy, but I think by doing so it is part of the healing process. Even though my heartbreakers were 20 years and 10 years ago respectively, those days are still sore spots in my soul since you never fully heal from the hurt and pain caused.

You and I learned valuable lessons...one being that love can never be one way or it will never work. Obvious yes, but when you are in love up to your chin and the other isn't reciprocating, well, it is hard just to let it go. But one fact is that there in NOTHING at all wrong with you...the abusive people are the blame, not you, so judging and condemning yourself is unproductive and even harmful. It took me a LONG time to let go of the guilt and even though I admit I made some mistakes, nobody deserves to be at the receiving end of an abusive partner.

Your abuse is much worse than mine, since I can't even imagine someone hurting a child, much less their own flesh and blood. You said, "I want the physical touch and someone to tell me that I am special and make me feel that way. Is that too much to ask for?"

The answer is definitely NO! God created that need in each of us, but I have learned, from a very special friend here on the hub, Skye2day, that often we rush into a relationship with the wrong person because we don't wait for the Godly partner God has for us! How true that is. I do believe that God has created a special person for each of us and that if we pray, trust Him, and wait for His perfect timing, He will bring that person into our life! That is worth the wait since God knows EXACTLY the right person for me, you, everyone!

Just remember, we can't rush God...He is on his own timetable. No matter what we do, He will bring this blessing to us when He knows it is right. Maybe he won't bring us somebody, that is possible, but He won't leave the need for being wanted, loved, and desired unfulfilled. He will fill it with something better...we can count on that!

So, hang in there and keep on your knees to our all loving Father. Jesus knows our feelings and as you know, Jesus is our High Priest, telling the Father our deepest desires and as long as we are obedient and in God's Will, the message we pray will reach God's ear!

As for being long winded! ROFLOL Well, I have been labeled that and more! Fine with me...better to be long winded than some other negative name! LOL Bless you and remember, "Trust and obey God and leave ALL the consequences to Him!

KH


galfromla 3 years ago

In this area of love, I have put my car in park and I am doing my best only by His grace not to start it until He tells me. I thought with my last relationship that I found the man of my dreams, but I got ahead of God. Not only did I get hurt, but my family was hurt as well. In the end Romans 8:28 kicked in and I saw how the Lord could turn a bad situation into one that glorified Him. I hate because of my emotions and desires I went down the path God had not sent me down. It seemed like this man was God's gift to any woman and he turned out to be a nightmare. My car is in park and will remain that way until God tells me to go.


Knightheart profile image

Knightheart 3 years ago from MIssouri, USA Author

Hey again, GalfromLA!

Sounds like you are doing the right thing. The desires of the heart are powerful motivators, causing even Believers grief and pain. Just look at King David and Bathsheba! David, a man after God's own heart let the lustful desires of his heart practically destroy him. Murder, adultery, and all the rest were David's reward for giving into to his lustful desires for a married woman. Although a terrible price to pay, this event has helped many learn a valuable lesson. If a man, so close to God can sin and fall on his face, and then be forgiven, then we too have that promise. Thank God the Holy Spirit included that story in the Bible!

Be wary of emotions and unchecked desires. They are the tools the Enemy uses to break our relationship with God. I like you analogy of the car in 'Park'. I think in my car, I will have it in Park, the emergency brake set and wheel chocks to prevent me from moving until God gives me the green light! LOL Thank for your comments!

KH

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