Romantic Love, it is the sweetest thing. A battlefield, a drug. A delusion. A lunacy. Of all various loves romantic love is the most complicated. It can come on when you least expect it, it can send you soaring into ecstasy to the abyss of despair. It can hit you like a ton of bricks, then dissipate as quicky as a breath on glass. Romantic love can be so confusing that sometimes you just want to give up on the whole thing and concentrate on macro-economics, or something else less tiring.
In the first throws of romantic love, you are under the influence of a powerful chemical cocktail, dopamine. If that is not enough, a perfect mixture of vasopressin and Oxycontin, the attachment hormone, are raging around your body. Which is why it is vital to bear in mind that when falling in love and choosing your mate you may be making a decision about the rest of your life based on only a fraction of your cognitive function. The same part of the brain is also the exact same part that response to the ingestion of cocaine. Which means that you may select a partner for life, and decide to make babies, all based on the same area of the cortex which enjoys illegal substances that make you talk accelerated gibberish all night long.
Plato said, that love is a mental disease. Modern researchers agree, categorizing love as a form of madness and echoing what psychologist have been telling tearful patients for years. Can you relate? Have you had that “CRAZY” romantic love? I have… I have been trying to recreate that feeling when my husband for years.
It is only when the insane chemical phase of romantic love dies down that you can tell whether it is the real thing. It is a transition into deep steady love that gets you through rainy days and financial crisis and the everyday task of life. The mysterious thing about real love is that it contains not trace of lunacy. It does not make you want to rip the clothes off at inappropriate moments. It’s times I feel my marriage lacks luster. We once had that chemistry. But now I know, it was when we were both in the throughs of romantic love.
Real consistant stable love is built of the bricks of a hundred small memories and moments in time. It is love but without the crazy. It is rationale less emotional. Romantic love, however deranged is still one of the great delights of life. The most delightful is “The Look” When my husband and I dated, we would dress for a night out on the town. Yes, I was still very much a fashionista… When he would pick me up he would look at me, with “The Look”. The look that said you are the most magical, mysterious, unique creature I have ever seen in my life. Today I look to my husband for that look. I have to chuckle cause I rarely see that look anymore. After stretch marks, mortgages and college tuition that “Look” is few and far between.
As a married women, proud of my ability to compromise and face reality, I sometimes lose all my reasoning and wonder why he never gives that look anymore. Then reasoning and rationale sinks in, I have stable and real love. I am sometimes searching for the exhilaration, that fairy tale but when I think, really think rationally I realize the love that i share is the profound affection that makes me smile at idiosyncrasies that anyone else would find irritating or pointless. But it’s true lasting and stable.