The Migrating Mind

Love isn't yours alone to claim

I loved a girl from school through college, a secret never knew. But, I was okay with it because, I knew she would be mine anyway. Why wouldn't she! Mine was after all 'true love'.

Growing up in 90s India, I believed in the notion of 'true love’. I knew that if my love was pure enough, God would orchestrate a plan to unite us. One-sided or mutual – it didn't matter. True love always wins. At least, that's what the movies taught me.

Even when I came to know that she was in love with another person, I didn't care. Because true love, you know. I believed that the universe will break her away from her existing relationship and bring her to me. My certainty in true love outweighed every other doubt.

But then one day after I joined college, I was sitting on the terrace, and this thought crossed my mind,

“what if her love towards the other guy is also true! In that case, it is only fair that she's with him”.

At that moment, everything changed.

I realized how stupid I’d been all along. I had put zero efforts, the girl had no clue I existed, but I was hoping she would magically love me back. I mean, Wtf!

There was no question of compatibility, acceptance, and compromise. My thought was, “She has to love me because I’m true, and I deserve her.”

And there was no question of failure. If she didn't return my love, no other woman ever could. Because true love, you know.

But, what if we weren't compatible. What if we're different people who want different things. Do we have to force ourselves into a relationship just because I was in true love? And does she have to sacrifice her everything just because my love is true? It made me rethink the question,

What is true love, really?

They say all is fair in Love and war. I think it's bullshit. It maybe fair in war, but it ain't fair in Love.

Love makes us selfish. Love breeds obsession. Love makes us angry and bitter. Love pushes us to justify our ugliest actions.

But, the concept of true love isn't about being toxic. It's the opposite. It's about being compassionate, being real, and being conscious that the other person we love is another human. They have their world, feelings, and love. If that love is you, cherish that. If not, true love means letting go, grateful for the chance to have loved them.

Even if that love now exists only as a bittersweet memory, it will forever be etched into who you are.