April Love - #1

This is the first letter in the April Love challenge.  I probably won't have one for each day of the month, but will try my best to make April memorable with a small series of letters.

Viktor Mogliat

Viktor Mogliat

Dear Love,

It wasn't until I neared my late twenties that I realised that finding you in other people had to be a secondary thing.  It had to come as a by-product of finding you in myself.  Before that realisation, I was careful to play small to suit others' preferences, and having you was always conditional.  After a painful crash at 24, I pulled away, determined to encase my heart in protective walls.  There would be no more disappointment if no one got too close, and for a while it was freeing.  There was no judgement, no box of another's making for me to fold myself into.  Instead, people skirted the periphery of my life and I, like a skittishly awkward rabbit, cautiously edged around theirs, our contact limited to necessities.

But slowly it became apparent that the energy, the effort that I spent in keeping my distance was imprisoning me.  I may have escaped the confinement of others' potential betrayals, but I'd created a different sort for myself.  It was one that left me with a constant dull ache in my stomach, and an ever-present tension in my shoulders.  I had to change my view of loving (and protecting) me: it wasn't about holding in constant remembrance those who hadn't, it was about getting to know me. Through creativity. Through solitude.  Through nature.  Through travel.  Through animals.  And when I re-directed my energy, focusing instead on this truth, I found you in a real way for the first time.  With you came an appreciation for the inner strength that got me through the past heartaches and a quiet confidence that what happened was just a stone on my path.  It may have slowed me down, derailing me for a little while, but ultimately it became an arrow, redirecting my journey.