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Not an eternal optimist, but addicted to hope

I came across a beautiful quote on being addicted to hope and it hit home, perfectly describing what all of us have but very few address. In the context of hope in romance, most of us have a hopeless romantic in us addicted to hope. I used to wonder where is the source of this hope? No matter how many times reality shows otherwise, that hope is unfettered. Logic may bury it for a while but it always finds a way to spring back in action. At times I have thought, will I ever learn, now I realize it was never about learning, it is about experiencing.

In our hurry to reach destinations and milestones in life, especially marriage and commitment, we have successfully ignored the real essence of it all, the real essence of what we term as romance. Romance is seldom given its due importance and how powerful it can be in healing us, just the tiny gestures that the heart craves. Only now when I have stopped and am actually listening to my heart that I realize how little it demands and sadly how difficult it has become to fulfill.

A walk on the beach, a cup of chai in the rain, holding hands in silence, a peck on the lips when no one is looking, a warm hug that stretches a bit longer, that awkward shy smile that creeps up unexpectedly and the butterflies in the tummy when you suddenly see that someone walking towards you, a romantic drive at night, or a soulful trip somewhere new or just a knowing smile across a crowded room.

When I talk to my friends and colleagues, almost all agree that yes, small gestures are far more enriching and yet commitment is what everyone focuses on. Sealing the deal, putting on that ring, setting the date and the next finality goes on, people tick off milestones in life as if life has a checklist. I love checklists by the way and swear by them as a project manager but life does not have checklists, society has checklists. Not all desires stem from evil, desires show us opportunities to fulfill our heart’s yearning. I once had someone tell me that marraige is a marketplace and you need to have a profile that is market ready, it should have a good job and the right body weight in it. I am still reeling from the conversation ha ha ha.

Our heart is a child, a child doesn’t need a lot to be happy, my 2 year old nephew is happy with a spoon and bowl pretending to cook, he doesn’t care for an expensive toy. Our rushing towards milestones called marriage/commitment has made us deaf to the heart’s wishes. Is our worth outlined only by getting married, having children, earning money, saving money, buying a house and then dying? Or is it about enriching our souls with experiences? Look forward to the experiences rather than the destination, be greedy for the companionship rather than the title, slow down and get excited again for that notification sound on your phone, anticipating a text from that someone. Really slow down and notice the power of tiny gestures and fleeting escapades of romance.

Romance can be a great healer, a soothing flow of energies that gives us a chance to be alive and fill our souls. Have you ever listened to a beautiful romantic song and felt your emotions instantly elevated? Any wonder that the majority of poetry, songs, stories, novels and movies are about romance? Going one step deeper, I would say it is not even about the other person, romance is more personal but we are beings that use our senses to perceive this world and hence we need a reciprocating energy to experience this fully.

It is sad to see the fear of commitment keeping so many of us afraid of even exploring romance, of even having a conversation or even giving someone a chance. We want the perfect person to just appear and only then we will even try. I am not for the swipping culture, casual dating just for casual intimacy, nothing wrong in it but I am referring to two mature individuals willing to risk rejection, willing to dip their toes and just give romance a chance, give themselves a chance, without any expectation, without any judgement or preconceived notion. Willing to listen and share their truth and hoping as addicted to hope they can be to find that energy click, it may last for a few days or for a lifetime but open your arms to romance, the good old fashioned way, just for the sake of celebrating life, just for the sake of companionship, just for the sake of drenching yourself in that energy, in the now.

Feed your soul and your heart and you will be rewarded, the addiction to hope is a default setting programmed to ride over the fear or reality of being rejected, use it to your advantage. If you see someone even half as cute as you expect, go ahead and ask them out for a coffee, take that walk down the beach, pick up the phone and have that 10 min phone call or even just send that one text. If you are married or have a partner, schedule out time in your calendar for dates with them, prioritise romance.

The heart does not really yearn for a “Will you marry me?”, it yearns for a “your smile makes my day”, it does not yearn for a diamond ring, it yearns for sharing a cup of tea in the rains, it does not yearn for a destination wedding, it yearns for a short bike ride around town, all the fancy things and the milestones are for our mind and society and have a place in life but that is not all of life. So slow down, try not to sprint to that milestone rather walk down the beach, holding hands in silence, with awkward shy smiles, a peck on the cheek that leads to butterflies in the tummy, romance the mind, body, heart and very soul of that other being. Do not let your fear of rejection or demand for the perfect partner to show up, stop you for living today. Leaving you with a quote from Rumi.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere, they are in each other all along Rumi


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