“Most love stories are about people who fall in love with each other. But what about the rest of us? What about our stories, those of us who fall in love alone? We are the victims of the one-sided affair. We are the cursed of the loved ones. We are the unloved ones, the walking wounded. The handicapped without the advantage of a great parking space!”
This is the cruelest kind of love. I watched Kate Winslet rambling these lines miserably in the 2006 release ‘The Holiday’ and I couldn’t empathize more. This kind of love is heart-breaking, selfless, extra-ordinary yet the most under-rated. The misery is they don’t even want to call it love. Its ‘just a crush’, obsession, phase or just to make you feel worse, ‘a prolonged crush’.
Here’s why it’s a lot more than that:
1. It’s not easy to give when you are not getting anything back
Maybe, that’s why they call it selfless. It’s easy to give, devote and feel when you are being cascaded with attention and squishy love. It is definitely not easy to give without ever being loved back. But we, one-sided lovers, willingly push ourselves into the pit. You know what’s crazy? Even when it hurts like Taylor Swift’s ‘Teardrops on My Guitar’, we would still cross oceans to make them happy.
2.We lean on hope for eternity
Maybe, one day they will wake up and realize it’s been us all this while? Even if we are one of the best friends they’d discuss their girlfriends with or one of the others whose existence stays in oblivion, we have a flickering ray of light deep inside which just doesn’t let us give up yet.
3. We have seen their best in their worst
For every imperfection of their’s the world knocks them down for, we are amazed by their raw perfection. From sighing at them on the school bleachers to being their rock in their darkest times, we have been there even when it served us no good. You know why? Because it only tore us down to see them like that. Being their cheerleader could be the only way we healed our own wounds.
4. We couldn’t fight with them, so we fought with ourselves
Hey, it’s not easy to love unconditionally. There are disappointments, broken hearts, anguished feelings, dreaded fears and self-questioning. “Why me?” “What’s wrong with me?” “God damn, do you even know?” We cannot blurt out, so we stay mum, suffocate ourselves with silent tears and zillions of heart-exploding questions. We act fine – indifferent or happy too.
5. We have let them go when it killed us inside
If it would make them happy, we would happily step back. Be it going to a new person, a new city or a new life, we have always let them go. We know those silent prayers for the life they wanted would kill all our chances of eternal happiness, but we never stopped them.
6. We overcome it all and still find reasons
It’s not like we paused. Over the years, we grew strong, evolved, and managed to find ourselves in the chaos. Still, this person got a hold on our heart in a way that we can still dig out hundred reasons to tell them how we are meant to be!
7. Patience and forgiveness are virtues no one know better than us
For an apology that was never asked and for patience which was never demanded – we have lived through it all. They broke us but that too couldn’t make us hate them. Years passed, but the feeling never faded. If Calvin Harris asked me, “How deep is your love”, all I would say is, “You have no idea!” Because in reality, no one could ever.
8. We have kept a promise no one asked us to make
It feels really stupid to be just here at times. The world has never been kind to us anyway. They have called us ‘too stuck’ or worse, losers. But it’s only us who know how hard we have tried to bury it, run away from it. Every 11:11 and every wishing star has had their name. Yet, we are still here – fearless- falling for them for the 100th time.
It’s selfless, hopeless, unconditional, crazy, devoted and all those adjectives you have ever used to describe ‘love’. Yet, you will just call it a crush. If this is not what you call Love, I don’t know what else you would.