But then what about marriage??? Wow..Murky waters we enter here..I claim to have no first hand experience in the matter..But again..I spoke ..to couples who are within a year of marriage to couples who are around ten years into marriage to expecting couples to twenty year couples to old couples..Yea I spoke to a lot of people..lol.. I became crossed version of Elizabeth Gilbert of Eat ,Pray, Love and Carrie Bradshaw of Sex and the City..Two women with beautiful ideas I must say..But ofcourse the below findings are entirely my own and I take full blame for however blasphemous they may seem to modern or ancient thinking readers of this piece.
Let me begin by saying the glaring truth that stood out to me through the entire journey of my seeking..English is a very shallow language..Yes..That is what I understand..Because we have been looking at Love wrong the whole time or rather defining it wrong the whole time..And I speak of our generation of people alone..The generation heavily influenced by books and movies and so on..
Ideally we must look at it yet again in segregation.. Romantic love on one hand and Married love on the other
.. But I again don’t mean married love to be necessarily in a marriage..It can be in other institutions also like say a live-in relationship..Two individuals who choose to be together for the long haul..Unfortunately, all our art and literature and motion pictures fall short on the exploration of the second type of love i.e., married love. And we have been like fools trying to mash it all up together and wondering what the heck went wrong two years down in marriage , where did all the love go because the biology of it has stopped..the drug in our brain has been withdrawn and atleast in the western culture I understand they say that love is gone..Puff! How sad indeed..That we humans , the highest of all evolved creatures are today clinging so desperately to a biological drive getting us through life.
Again, I don’t mean to sound rude. But it’s true.. I have observed married love to be something altogether different..In the happy couples atleast..It is like still waters..Runs deep..It’s not a shallow brook, slipping and splashing and giggling and gurgling it’s way through..It does not make that kind of noise..It is very quiet..and yet the most nurturing and satisfying kind of love..It gives a certain deep comfort of the familiar and a strong stability through a partnership which can only help the two people involved in it to grow mutually.. And with the strength that comes from that stability and the nurturing environment they create together ,couples choose to bring in more love by willingly and in full awareness pro-creating new life..
Am not saying it is easy at all because we do not have a drug haze to get us through it..It must be a conscious choice everyday to make it beautiful..and gradually it becomes natural..I sort of picture it to be a beautiful house full of sunshine and green meadows and two individuals happily sitting side by side with the sure knowledge of gentle love and strong support for each other with three beautiful children screaming in laughter and running towards them.A Sunday afternoon. Wistful much? Maybe..But that’s just my imagination getting the better of me..Moving on to marriage..
Marriage is mostly never happy always..A lot of couples laugh when they tell me, love or arranged, one year down it’s all the same..Well, ofcourse it is! Because kind sir or madam, romantic love was your brain on overdrive..Like a drug buzz..It is bound to fade or your brain functions will cease! But does that mean that it was unnecessary? Not in the least! It was that beautiful process that lead you to this stage of the relationship..To the married love..The secret of a successful marriage is then a whole another concept of compatibility. Which is why Indian elders of a certain community obsess about astrological compatibility..But that is wrong on so many levels and that is yet another topic I will cover maybe never because it doesn’t interest me.
Marriage is about habit..When in love , in the haze..we adjust and more often than not never see the flaws because well, we are blind in love..like not just poetically but biologically..We change for each other..Try to be what the other person wants and then when the dust all settles and we revert back to who we are..Voila! Comes the blame game of ‘He/ She has changed a lot’. They haven’t changed..They are becoming what they naturally are..Case in point I will take the recent movie ‘Gone Girl’ which disturbing as it was ,does have some take home pointers we could use.
Take a look at the couple..The lady, hard core newyork elite with the finest taste and a city girl through and through..The gentleman(the very hot Ben Affleck) is a small town guy who loves his small circle and is content with the couch and small town fun and way of life( this happens when the couple move to the gentleman’s native place) . How on earth did they even think they had a chance if either of them didn’t consciously work at it? In the Indian society, the woman is just expected to change and no questions are asked or discussed in many cases. But these days women are not as simple as that..And she on the other hand was taking it like the proverbial drama queen and went about it in her psychopathic way of dealing with it..which I would not recommend to all somehow 😛 lol..
But jokes apart..Take a classic example closer home in our Indian scenario. Disclaimer- It is only an example, and most couples figure it out eventually but I have seen how the clashes emerge before they sort it out and hence I present the example.. Any similarities to any person/couple is an absolute coincidence 😉 The guy brought up by a home maker mom who has had everything taken care for him since little ends up marrying a woman who is very self-sufficient , not necessarily ‘career obsessed’ but an average woman who does love what she does. And these days , guys are often looking for self-sufficient women because a normal household would require a double income to sustain it. Arranged or love, after a while, the guy out of force of habit begins to expect things the way it was when his mom was around..And the woman has even higher expectation of the guy understanding how to cope with the situation. (Women and Men and expectations..A whole another topic)
And I say this out of all respect to the guy and the girl..It’s not his or her fault because he was never used to a co-operative household where he was required to help out around the household, or understand that the wife maybe tired after a day’s work and she can’t go out with him to a certain gathering..Or the ultimate, help out once a baby arrives..And she in turn was never told to expect that disparity from the guy because such matters do not surface when you are living apart and meeting now and then and also in the initial stages of a romantic relationship because again, we do it out of Love! It leads to colossal disappointment unless we have a good network of family and friends to discuss the issue with and cope with it..
And again ‘He/ She changed after marriage’.
In married love, unlike in romantic love..I think it’s similarities that should attract..not opposites..Because it then would make for common habits and at the end of the day a better chance at coping with life together..Or if there are clashing qualities, there must be great openness and understanding from both ends to accept each other . This in turn again strengthens each other with unconditional love because again married love is like that of family..Your spouse is not just your lover but sometimes becomes your parent and your child , your best friend and sometimes your worst enemy..How many of us can honestly say that we love our family 24/7 365 days of the year..It’s ridiculous..There are times we would want to throttle them..And yet they are family..Married love is like that..It’s crazy..It’s a roller coaster..There is no love in it in terms of the buzz and euphoric high..But it has a deep nurturing quality to it..Like the roots of a tree..Deep down and yet it’s down there in the muck and mud so that the tree can grow strong and into the sky.
Now then the eternal question, Who then do we marry? To be continued.. Part 4: And Finally