Posted by: ~KC~ | May 31, 2008

Expectations and the Pursuit of Love

… But I do believe…

That not everything is gonna be the way
You think it ought to be
It seems like every time I try to make it right
It all comes down on me
Please say honestly you won’t give up on me
And I shall believe
And I shall believe.

~Sheryl Crow, I Shall Believe.

I had this posting on how I don’t believe in love anymore and that the pursuit of it, in our modern day and age… is well… pointless. I also had this whole thing that I don’t believe in it anymore… but I can’t necessarily say that I believe what I wrote in its entirety – it was completely written out of frustation. So I removed my rant about modern love… although it had some good points… it’s not the point I want to make.

I came across Sheryl Crow’s song on a site where a good woman speaks of heartache (and for this reason only, I will not post a link to her site, out of respect for her grieving). And I stopped because the lyrics speak volumes and this is the point I had wanted to make.

I grew up with expectations of what love was to look like (and the absolute worst real life examples of what it actually looked like). Media tells us what love is to look like. Stupid cheesy romance novels talk about knights, saving the broken downtrodden soul. But in true life, it never does. And the more I tried to make it look like the image I had in my mind… I ended up with tremendous heartache. And with each cut, I become more guarded… more jaded… more desensitized to the idea of love. Because I want to believe… which is what keeps me from being completely insensitive and incapable of love.

I’ve loved – and I mean TRULY loved – two men in my life. I’ve been IN love twice. Oh… I’ve loved plenty… but being in love and loving are two different things. At least in my books. But I stand here today… extremely cautious about putting my heart on the line. I’ve done the whole online dating thing – long before Lavalife became elitist and Plenty of Fish became a pond of bottom feeders. But I never got what I signed up for… too many photofinishing, editing, fake promises and lies. It becomes so unnatural to meet face to face… that the only thing that is seemingly real are the online personas that people take on.

So, I gave up on online dating. I have met some great people – but it’s too superficial. It’s too fake. It’s not real. And all a girl really wants at the end of her day… is something real and tangible.

So… listening to Sheryl Crow’s song for the ‘umpteenth time in the last two days, made me stop and reassess – how could I not? Because it never is what we think it ought to be. Because one has to stop every once in a while to reassess what is no longer working… and change… or at least challenge our beliefs. And the hardest part is then doing what is right for us… and sometimes at the cost of hurting others.

My heartache and disappointment doesn’t lie squarely on the shoulders of the men who’ve hurt or betrayed me in some way or another. I’ve left a trail of broken hearts in my day (not tooting my own horn here) and have been the reason to blame for their failure. No. It’s about owning your expectations. Nothing ever really comes painted exactly as you had planned. And yes, everything happens for a reason. Sometimes, the reason doesn’t hold a GRAND scheme other than to remind you that your disappointment is truly your own. That someone didn’t not live up to your expectations but rather that you had expectations that no one could live up too in the first place. The ultimate setup for failure… usually because you can’t even deliver on your own expectations.

I’ve often used the expression… wishing to find someone who is on the same page at the same time… as me. But I’ve come to realize that that isn’t even a remote possibility. At best, I can only hope to find someone who doesn’t mind reading my pages and wants to read more… and not tear out the pages or previous paragraphs because they are what defines me. And vice versa honestly. We all have our own books of life to write. Each of us playing a character in them… but the book isn’t about someone else… but rather our own selves. And if I am lucky enough to find someone who is eager to keep on reading my book… in spite of myself… then Jupiter will have come thru yet again for this Sagittarius.

Love… the pursuit of love… the maintenance of love… is a lost art form. Too many give up on it before it even has a fighting chance. We hide behind disappointment and failure to meet expectations – usually set upon us or our own expectations – and never truly love with abandon. And don’t mistake sex for love… again… they are two very distinct physical demonstrations of two very different things.

…All I want is the wind in my hair
To face the fear but not feel scared

Ooh, wild horses I wanna be like you
Throwing caution to the wind, I’ll run free too
Wish I could recklessly love like I’m longing to
I wanna run with the wild horses…

~Natasha Beddingfield, Wild Horses

But the question is: do we heed the call, open the door to beat of love and keep it open long enough to see if it has a fighting chance… and then work at keeping that door open? I know I want too. I am human… no, not desparate. People assume that because I’m a single chick hoping to find something tangible and real… that I must be desperate… and the advice the never fails to baffle meit’s when you aren’t looking for it… is when it comes knocking… So stop looking. It assumes that love is a game, an immature game of hide and seek, of playing hard to get. If you don’t want it… you will get it.

I don’t play such games. And yet I find myself single… so there’s a bit of irony.

I don’t know… but I do know that it never is what we think it ought to be. The whole pre-packaged thing… isn’t working. And yes, we all have our preferences… but nothing is ever truly written in stone. And, because of someone else’s heartache… I find myself taking a very closer look at my expectations… and opening myself up to the opportunity to change or challenge them.

Because at the end of the day… I want to believe… in spite of my experiences and myself. We are our own worst enemy. And one day… I want to be able to write… I do believe. Because I am human… and it is a real human desire and need… to believe and to love.


Here’s a little funny ditty about modern day romances… technology at its best…



  1. Ah Love, possibly the worlds most complicated subject. I agree that often we let our ideal picture of Love get in the way of just loving each other and being happy. Finding the right balance of give and take. Best advice given to me about Love: Learn to love yourself first.

    The video was funny and yet sad in a way.

  2. Thanks for your comment. I’m glad you stumbled on my blog too because I really like yours. 🙂

    I love how you really put yourself out there in your post. Knowing that my boss and friends read my blog, it’s often hard for me to be 100% out there. I feel like some things I want to keep private, but you verbalized a lot of the sentiments I feel.

    Cheers to that!

  3. There’s a great quote by the main character’s uncle Hub (Robert Duvall) in Secondhand Lions:

    “Sometimes the things that may or may not be true are the things a man needs to believe in the most. That people are basically good; that honor, courage, and virtue mean everything; that power and money, money and power mean nothing; that good always triumphs over evil; and I want you to remember this, that love… true love never dies. You remember that, boy. You remember that. Doesn’t matter if it’s true or not. You see, a man should believe in those things, because those are the things worth believing in.”

    He said that to a teenage boy in the movie, and I think it is part of what every boy should hear. Yeah it was in a movie, but I choose to believe that regardless of it’s source, it has ideas that have value.

    If something has value to you because the concept is inherently noble or right, regardless of the way the world seems to want to work, it is worth believing in.

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