How do you fall in love?
It seems to me that there are two ways of thinking about love:
1. That it is a force, something outside of yourself that comes over you and drives you to actions and choices and people and even a whole big life.
2. That it is a choice, something that comes from within you, that you can control and shape and grow.
First, I’ll tell you what I think. I am a firm believer in #2. I think that love comes from within us, and that we are mostly in control of it. Of course you have to have a certain set of variables in place for love to happen, and even more for it to last: You have to be attracted to someone, you have to have that very real so-called “chemistry” that makes you want to put your face in their neck and just take a whiff of their great whatever-it-is that makes them just right for you. You have to have matching values systems and life goals. All that boring stuff that is less fun to think about that electric kisses and love at first sight, that stuff all matters.
Along those lines, I think we grow what we put our attention upon. Our relationships are like plants. Feed and water them the right way, care for them, they’ll probably grow. Neglect them and they’ll wither away. It makes sense. It’s scientific, even.
But there is a part of me that is actually overwhelming at times that believes that it is a force. That love can come in like weather, like a high pressure system, and overwhelm us and affect us so much that it seems hard to control.
I’m sure that’s just brain chemistry. I’m sure that it’s dopamine and adrenaline and serotonin. But it feels like a real thing, a living entity. Like if it went away a real thing would be dead.
So what do you think? Is there something mystical or magical about love?
Or is it just the magic of brain chemistry combined with the choices we make to sustain relationships and help them grow?
How did you fall in love? Was it like a storm coming across your horizon, or was it like growing a plant over time with proper care and nurturing?