To love, or not to love

Posted on June 6, 2016


“To love, or not to love…”

Sat here in my parent’s place outside the hustle and bustle of the city, i’ve been recalibrating after a stressful period overseas. For two weeks now i’ve been living the life of a 60-something retiree, and I gotta say, it suits me. Leisurely breakfasts with pancakes, fresh coffee and hours spent thumbing through the latest editions of Psychologies and Soul & Spirit magazine. Every now and again I take a walk down to the local village, I stop and look in the window of the property agents like many adults, and sometimes I’ll enjoy a small glass of Malbec at the local pub trying not to balk at the ridiculous prices.

Aside from avoiding thinking about my usual mind quests, I’ve been spending lots of time thinking about my life, looking at my dreams for the future, my longer term goals and working out how to achieve them whilst having lots of room for these thoughts to breath.

But there’s been one lingering thought all this time.

“Is LOVE itself, enough?”

I left a lovely young man in Sri Lanka.

If you’ve ever had to wrestle with this type of love challenge, you’ll resonate when I say this. But boy oh boy, this is a hamster wheel! And I wanna get off!

I’m going round and round and round in circles in my mind wondering whether it’s something I should invest in (emotionally, mostly – but also, it’s not cheap flying to Sri Lanka on a regular basis). One minute i’m thinking ‘fuck yeh I wanna chase this love train!’ and the next i’m flicking onto Tinder to see what alternative options there might be closer to home. Good looking ex-military man Matt, 34, from Lincoln perhaps?

But then i’m reminded about how much it takes to get a new relationship started. It’s emotionally draining and the odds of finding love are rare. 4/5 internet dates move to a 2nd for me, and I just rarely fancy anyone.

And i’m really rather attracted to my gorgeous Sri Lankan man. It’s the kind of attraction that feels a wee bit cosmic. But then just as my day dreaming will run away with me, I quickly recall how our communication can be somewhat lacking . We don’t always understand each other because of the language barrier. Even though his English is great, I often have to ask him to repeat himself and a lot of the time I know he’s given up asking me to the do the same – often the conversation can be a bit stunted between us. It’s a shame, because I can tell when he speaks in Singhala to his friends they’re getting a very different experience of him than I do.

And let’s not forget how long it took me to get him to talk about his feelings. But then now that he’s opened up, he won’t stop telling me how much he loves me. It’s just not peppered with any icing on top . We have to resort to very plain English in order to communicate. There’s no metaphor, wordplay, any kind of creative articulation really except a few in-jokes which rise the banter levels enough to prevent me from being bored.

Thinking about this stuff has been making me question what non-negotiables there are for me in a serious relationship. The other day, when I was writing this out in list format I realised how important it is for me to have deep and meaningfuls with my beau. I need to connect on an intrinsically deep level, to share stories about our lives in good natured, humourful ways and to have a laugh together.

A Viber message popped up with its unique sound and shrilled me to attention “Sweetheart” it said. Accompanied with a cheeky photo of a dark brown man wearing very little with the additional message “Look what I found”. When I clicked on the image and it expanded I was able to see a little more of this wonderfully naughty dark brown man. It brought a big smile to my face and suddenly i’m jumping back into that hamster cage for a four legged ride into the sunset.

It’s confusing. I have felt this enormous pressure to make a decision on whether I go for it with him, even when deep down in my heart of hearts I know that this relationship isn’t going to work in the long term.

I’ve soul searched, asked the universe for a sign, and explored greatly what it is that I want from a partner and I’ve come to the conclusion that this isn’t it. This is just a bit of fun. A lovely, sweet, gorgeous little bit of fun. The universe delivered him to me when I needed him most. I got the gift of a great guy! I’m a lucky son of a gun.

Ready to cut the chord, I started putting up the proverbial walls preparing all parties involved (me mostly) for the inevitable. I ignored a few of his messages, he had been doing the same to me too, and was thinking and feeling very much ‘this is it. here we go.’.

I took a deep breath preparing to tell him it was over…. [and deleted the Viber message i’d composed. Tempting but too cruel].

Then this morning he called me. I’m not coming to visit you anymore babe, I told him. I didn’t get the vibe you wanted me to come I said.

He replied ‘What? I was waiting to speak on the phone. I called you twice and you didn’t pick up’.

I told him that I don’t know if this is something I can do. That it’s too hard. He broke down, telling me that long distance relationships are rough. And then when I asked him how his day was, he said that everything sucks. His friend’s dad died. That he misses me really badly. That he’s fed up of us not understanding each other. That he wishes he could see me.

My heart bled.

I’m now booked on a flight to go and see him in 10 days. Maybe i’m a softy. Maybe i’m just a girl who loves a guy. I have no idea. But I wanna see him and this seems like the right thing to do. Maybe i’ll stop going round in circles in my mind by doing this.


I think for all intents and purposes you can make decisions about who you let into or out of your life based on a set of guiding principles which may or may not work for you until you’ve tried them.

The question around choosing to love someone (or not) can maybe seem less arduous if you consider it more to be about whether you’re choosing to love them right now (or not). Equally you can push love away forever, or you can push love away for right now (and see if it finds it way back again). Both come with risks. But all I know is that in this moment in time, there’s something there between this lovely guy and me.

My head is pointing and shaking it’s finger at my heart…