I wasn’t paying much attention to the conversations going on around me, but a few words from a spoken sentence floated into my conscious awareness, “she was looking for love”!
Reflecting later, there is often a desperate edge to that “looking” for love. I think of the men I’ve had coffee with who have bewailed the fact that they cannot find love. After all, they tell me, “I am reasonably good looking, not shabby on the eye, fairly intelligent, I hold down a good job, I’m financially secure and I just don’t understand why I can’t get someone to love ME”
Oblivious to the fact they sound desperate and like a 3 year old throwing a tantrum which is a ‘turn off’ to anyone they are perplexed by their bad luck. I try to be a good counsellor and friend, and resist the urge to grab them by the scruff of the neck and bang their head into the coffee table. Instead I smile weakly and say “I know! Really! And how does that make you feel!” All of which I have learnt from my friend the wolf. Now wolves can say these things with just the right amount of menace in their voice so that men usually decide to quickly stop slobbering about their lack of luck in love. Badgers don’t have the same menace so said men think I really care! (The wolf is trying to teach me the tone of menace).
Yet, it is true we often ‘look for love’ so we don’t have to do the hard work of loving ourselves. If our first priority is not to love ourselves then chances are that our relationships with our lovers, partners, spouse will be difficult, challenging and problematic for we are not looking to love “the other” simply a warm blooded mirror who will send a reflection back to us.
The poem below drawn from the myth of Narcissus reflects the search for that love that is really an excuse to adore ourselves.
Let me gaze into the pool of your eyes
For there I see myself
Let me contemplate my reflection
The ethereal me become solid in your eyes.
Echo for me, my brilliance
Repeat to me my beauty
Reverberate my intelligence back to me
Hold your gaze in unblinking stare
For in blinking you distort my image
Marbled eyed, keep staring
So I can see my substance
I love you so I can worship myself
My affection for you is bounded only by my adoration of myself
I vow to never leave you
Until I find another with more reflective eyes!