Thursday, February 03, 2011

Love With No Expectations

True love begins

The other day I was asked "How did you and Rob make it work?"  I asked my mother the same thing about her marriage, "How did you make it work?"  I thought I knew the answer and what we both discussed, me and my mother, confirmed what I thought.

No expectations.

Oh, except that the relationship will end.  Expect and end.  Either one or both of you end the relationship or, even where there is a lifelong commitment, one of you dies.  All relationships end.  Always.  Inevitably.  And with that expectation in place, the rest is a piece of cake.  I mean, what's the worst that can happen between then and now?  

If you're lucky, there are flowers and chocolates in between.  If you're very lucky neither of you ends up with a debilitating condition that results in one of you wiping the ass of the other and wiping vomit from chins and hair.  And if you're luckier than most, you'll die together, in some freak accident, without pain and suffering.  

But let's face it, most of us are lucky to just fall in love and the worst that can happen?  Well, you already know it's going to end, no matter how perfect it is today, so maybe the key is simply to be here in this moment, not making plans for next month or next year or a lifetime.  

See?   Love.  Piece of cake.  

Image from


  1. Thanks for this great post! (Once again,) I can only wholeheartedly agree.
    The thing I find strangest is that if you say something along these lines, most people are freaked out (or at least call you a pessimist). It's so... incredible. I mean, everyone (well, most) would agree that "everything changes" etc. but as soon as you touch the topic of "relationships" everything suddenly is meaningless unless it's forever - "PROMISE! FOREVER. Or you don't love me". Why is it so difficult for people to just enjoy what is there, now? Where does that giant collective self-deception come from?

  2. Oh, and also, I'd really like to have a piece of that cake. (NOT metaphorically speaking!) *g*

  3. E*phi, Like you, I find this idea of all relationships ending a wonderfully freeing truth, not the least bit pessimistic. When did realism equal pessimism? Or are optimistic people walking around believing that they will not die?

    And the cake . . . when I googled "love cake" images, I came across a few I liked but this one, with the piece sliced out of it, was simply too perfect a metaphor to choose anything else. But what with the weight I've gained, the last thing I need is a piece of cake. Life is cakey enough for me. God knows, loving Rob is about all the "piece of cake" I can stand. (Doctor gave him a clean bill of health, yesterday, recovering quite nicely from his appendectomy. Whew!)

  4. Oh my God, it is so true isn't it. One of the first things Joe and I talked about when our relationship had become official is that neither one of us should assume that we are going to be together forever.
    And this is after a year of talking and months of saying I love you before we became an exclusive couple.
    And we talked about this hard for weeks after we got together.
    We started out as a trial and I don't know at what point we decided it no longer needed to be said that we don't know what's going to happen but it's gonna happen whether we like it or not.
    Am I making sense? I feel like I'm talking in circles.

  5. Thanks for this post. I really loved what you had to say. I'm so thankful that Andre didn't have a huge basketful of expectations when he married me. When I got sick and things got hard this year he totally stuck with me.

  6. Thank you Katie. I see that this post has touched a lot of hearts and that's a pleasant surprise. I have something else simmering in the back of my mind. It may not be as rich with insight and I may not even get around to writing it the way I would like so that it is something I'd want to share. But you never know . . .

    And it is nice to know that, when you are not your best, there's someone there who will still care.

  7. I keep reading things that you write and post and I start looking for that Like button (as in facebook).
    I feel a sense of sadness for women who are giving up hope that great men do exist. Because they really do. It's so nice to know that there are other women who have found some of these great men and can keep inspiring hope for other women in search of the elusive "good man."

  8. I used to have one for nearly a year but nobody ever used it so I just deleted it. I felt like it was taking unnecessary space and I could put something else in its place.